Elon Musk gave assistant 2-week test when she asked for raise, and she failed





Assholes who make a product or thing or art are often given passes because one likes what they produce.

So Musk and Jobs might be dicks, but their products are world changing.

Lots of actors, musicians, artists etc are horrible people, but we enjoy the art they produce. Sports figures too.

This of course doesn’t mean we should EXCUSE such behavior, but it explains we we tolerate it. Again it falls under separating the art (or product) from the artist. Though one if one is defending them just because one likes them, one should step back and realize that one can acknowledge their faults and still support the good things they are doing. You don’t have to have pure heroes - as they don’t exist.

Isn’t there some saying about being careful about meeting your idols?


Meh. There is something wrong with our society that we prize high end gadgets and the makers of high end gadgets.


If you’re rich and white, you’re not an asshole, you’re “eccentric” and “curmudgeonly”.


Privilege; it’s a helluva drug.

Piss poor reasoning, that; even though you’re correct, IMO.

Again, it speaks to many people’s true core values, methinks; and those ‘values’ seem to be highly materialistic and self-centered in nature.



I agree we fetish gadgets too much. And I am not really a big fan of either person. Smart phones have revolutionized how we see the world and interact (though if Jobs hadn’t popularized it, someone else would have).

Given the importance of getting off CO2 emitting gas engines for our main modes of transportation, I think the work at Tesla is very important, though still too early to be world changing.

It shows how complicated the world is. If you dig around you can find bad things most people have done. Some of my favorite modern artists were horrible drunks. David Bowie is fondly remembered, even though he deflowered an underage girl, and wasn’t a very good dad. Dave Chappelle’s new shows struggle with the dichotomy that Bill Cosby is a horrible person it turns out, even though he is a hero and pioneer to many black comics including himself. How many of us have parents or siblings who have done horrible things to us/our families yet you still love them?

I guess I approach it from condemning the actions, making it clear something is not ok, with out condemning everything they have ever done. Anyone defending something bad because they also did something good isn’t being honest nor helpful. I mean my mom taught me early on, two wrong don’t make a right, and two rights don’t right a wrong.


As you note, it was coming. The “genius” was in the breathless marketing methods employed by apple. It traded on the cult of personality around Jobs and his supposed genius.

We can say much of Musk regarding EVs. They are coming, several companies are selling EVs and the more that companies put out EVs, the more common they will be, and the faster the battery technology will evolve. Teslas are still high end status symbols, if you ask me. I’d guess that which ever car company makes an affordable electric car that a working class family can afford and make effective use of will be the winners. not everyone wants a car that’s fast and exciting… most of us want a car that will get us where we need to go, can get the kids to and from school, carry what we need it to carry, with a minimum of problems and a long life. I don’t think that’s Tesla, frankly. But we’ll see. Maybe I’m wrong and Tesla will begin to put out lower costs minivans for families. At this point, they are aimed squarely at men with cash to burn who wish to signal how hip they are.

I don’t think that’s the same thing, though. Our personal ties aren’t the same thing as publicly celebrating individuals who contributed to our culture, but may also be jerks. It’s hard to break ties with family members sometimes, for any number of reasons. We often feel obligated to care for our family members, no matter what they’ve done to us, especially if we are the ones keeping them from falling apart.


This is my third post this morning to say this, but finding out that the story didn’t happen has made me exponentially more irritated with the sucking up.

According to Musk (again, I’m taking him at his word because it would be easy to find out he was lying and he’s not Trump) the real story is that at some point he realized he needed several specialists instead of one generalist, so he ended up parting with a fantastic personal assistant who received 52 weeks of severance and went on to work at another firm in a role similar to the one she performed for him.

So Musk’s supporters in this thread have been arguing arguing that after 12 years of working for a fantastically wealthy person while they run successful businesses, you are owed nothing more than a “Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.” because you serve at your employer’s pleasure. Meanwhile, Musk himself thinks that after 12 years of dedicated service you deserve an opportunity to put your skills to use elsewhere in the company and, if you turn that down, 52 weeks of severance and glowing references.

What the fictional-Musk defenders don’t seem to get is just how against norms the (apparently apocryphal) story about the firing of the assistant is. It’s a philosophy 101 problem come to life. Like if we were praising Musk for pushing the fat man onto the trolley tracks instead of saying, “What the fuck?!? He pushed a guy in front of a speeding trolley?!?”. That’s not having the genius to know how to save the other five people, that’s murder.

I don’t know Musk personally. I’ve always thought he seemed okay as people go based on what I’d heard about him. I read this story and thought, “Wow, what a dick.” I read his correction of the story and think, “Oh yeah, that makes a lot more sense.” If his former assistant comes out in the next couple of days and says, “No, it really happened like it was written, the man is a fucking psycho,” then I’ll go back to “Wow, what a dick.”

Updating your beliefs when you encounter new facts. That’s a helluva drug.


No one is perfect or infallible; that goes without saying.

To err is to be human, they say; because fucking up comes naturally to our species.

My issue isn’t that otherwise talented people are often very flawed; it’s when society is so very prone to overlooking those flaws completely, often to the point of enabling bad/unethical behavior.

(Case in point: Joe Paterno.)


I’m totally on board, but I’d like to replace “talented” with “rich”. Musk may be both, but we are awash in examples of people with no talents to speak of who seem to be held as infallible by many.


If his defense is accurate, that’s great. It certainly makes him look like much less of a dick, which could also be his spin. As you note, it looks like the assistant hasn’t said publicly if the story is true (or did I miss that?).

But as you note, it appears that if people thought it was/had been true, they were still willing to step up and defend him none the less.

Indeed. We all fall victim to our internal biases that make us immune to facts sometimes.




It seems to me that both attributes are some seriously superficial reasons for allowing someone to ‘slide’ on standards to which other “regular” people are rigidly held.


From Twitter (now deleted) in regards to Chris Brown beating up Rihanna:

I know Rihanna didn’t like it much, but Chris brown you can punch me in the face all you want. #sorrynotsorry #sexy

And it’s just one of many. Chris Brown still has a fairly lively career and a lot of his fans had zero problem with him beating up a woman. There’s loads of examples like this with other celebrities, obviously this is not a secret but i do find it frustrating that the public and the court system is very lenient towards the rich and famous.


Don’t even get me started on that over-hyped douchebag.

The girl (presumably) who wrote that foolish shit, likely thinking it was edgy, would probably be the first one to sue him if Brown even breathed on her wrong, let alone punched her in the face.

I guess that’s what’s most bothersome to me about this disturbing trend of defending the indefensible; it seems like it’s often just for the negative attention.

While I’m sure that some people are legitimately serious in their support, many people who lept to Musk’s/Patterno’s/Cosby’s/Brown’s/Whoever’s defense would change their tunes in a heartbeat if it was them or someone they cared about who was adversely affected.



I’ll be the first to agree that Jobs was overrated. Hell, Musk may be too. While Tesla and SpaceX may become viable, the Hyperloop idea is pure folly. I am not here really to defend specific people, rather just pointing out we compartmentalize all the time. People we like and respect we give way more leeway against people we don’t.

It isn’t exactly the same thing, but it shows how much shit we can tolerate with people because of personal bonds. The bonds between one and celebrities or idols or people we are fans of are real too (in our minds) and its an example of how we excuse so much of their behavior. And vise versa.

Yeah, that really highlights apologetics gone astray.

I agree that’s an issue and we shouldn’t be so enamored with someone to not condemn their bad behavior.

Of course popular people - for what ever reason - often get more free passes. I bet if one thought about people they knew they could think of people who could get away with things others couldn’t. Their bad behavior was accepted as, “Ah, that’s Pat for you!”


Just how long do you think it took for Musk to hire a new assistant?


“the real story is that at some point he realized he needed several specialists instead of one generalist”

And that just happened to coincide with the woman asking for a raise?

It seems possible that both versions are true, but Musk is thinking of another assistant he let go.


That’s pretty much what’s always said about my older sister (aka ‘the antichrist’) anytime she does something fucked up, which is often; “Well, you know how 'Vita is!”


I agree; it’s rather unsettling to know how much our own individual biases impact our supposed moral compasses.


I have been in a Tesla; there’s a storefront at the local mall. It’s a beautiful car. And when it first came out it literally broke the safety rating scale because the whole front end of the car is a crumple zone. So it’s a great vehicle.

But it’s not one that most people probably need. There’s a ton of them where I live, it’s a rich area and they’re status symbols. There’s also about 90,000 Nissan Leafs; a much more affordable fully-electric vehicle.

Tesla did it really well, but other car companies are doing perfectly adequate cars at a fraction of the price. An EV under $30,000 has no sales tax in Washington, that’s one reason we went with a Leaf.