Elon Musk: "I’m a Fucking Idiot"

Hobbes

Incident Manager
Verified
Oct 27, 2017
3,296
United States
Elon Musk admitted he is a “fucking idiot” for smearing a British cave diver that helped save a dozen kids as a “child rapist” in an email to a BuzzFeed reporter, court documents in the ensuing defamation trial show.

A refresher: Last year, 12 kids and their soccer team coach were trapped in a cave in Thailand but emerged alive weeks later thanks to the efforts of rescuers, including British expat and Thailand resident Vernon Unsworth. Later, Unsworth criticized a “mini-sub” that Musk had his engineers build for the rescue effort as worthless and having “absolutely no chance of working.” Musk retaliated by accusing Unsworth of being a “pedo guy” in a tweet to his millions of followers on July 15, 2018.



Musk also doubled down in an August 2018 series of emails to BuzzFeed News in which he referred to Unsworth as a “child rapist” and claimed the diver moved to Chiang Rai to marry a 12-year-old girl, citing a private investigator. (British tabloids later reported Woranan Ratrawiphukkun is 40 and met Unsworth in the UK less than a decade ago.) While Musk could charitably be called ignorant with respect to journalistic norms—he once cited an alleged sex cult’s website as evidence that the media is biased against him—he really took that to the next level in his emails to BuzzFeed, which he assumed would not publish them because he prefaced them with “off the record.”

That nothing one says to a reporter is actually off the record unless they affirmatively agree to it in advance is more or less a kindergarten-level lesson in media literacy. Well, Musk now realizes that he flunked that class. Court documents from Unsworth’s legal team, based on info found during discovery, show he told a PR consultant: “I didn’t expect Buzzfeed to publish an off the record email. My intent was to have them investigate and come to their own conclusions, not publish my email directly. Still, I’m a fucking idiot.”

He added that it was “one of the dumbest things I’ve ever done,” with Unsworth’s legal team helpfully putting both of the quotes in boldface emphasis.
 

Brashnir

Member
Oct 25, 2017
986
Glad he finally realized it. Dude has done some amazing things, but he was one-thousand-percent wrong in every way during that particular exchange.
 

5taquitos

Member
Oct 27, 2017
5,587
OR
He's just calling himself an idiot for thinking BuzzFeed wouldn't publish his emails, not for actually, you know, accusing this dude of being a pedo.
 

Kasey

Member
Nov 1, 2017
4,724
Boise
All of this because a dude criticized his dumbass plan and gave his ego the slightest of bruises.
 

ToddBonzalez

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,877
I thought he was claiming that “pedophile” was just a lighthearted, cheeky insult in South Africa so it was all a big misunderstanding basically. Lol.
 

Akira86

Member
Oct 25, 2017
9,583
ah so this is like when a narcissist says they're an idiot. he made an error, but the failing is still in someone else rude enough to "breach the rules of journalism", lmao

Glad he finally realized it. Dude has done some amazing things, but he was one-thousand-percent wrong in every way during that particular exchange.
well.....he realized something, but not the thing you think he did.
 

FairyEmpire

Member
Oct 25, 2017
15,665
Well, he is. He may be a genius at his job but he needs to have somebody else filter out his thoughts before they go into tweet form, because his unfiltered thoughts about the world are bad.
 
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L Thammy

Spacenoid
Member
Oct 25, 2017
16,203
but only for the buzzfeed thing. i'm still pretty smart for calling someone a pedophile for not letting me gloryhog
 

Messofanego

Member
Oct 25, 2017
7,077
UK
He might be calling himself an idiot for the wrong reason but I'd like to generalise for him and with that I would agree.

Already a couple of Muskies in this thread having to preface their statements before they criticise him that he's a "genius" and doing "amazing things". It's hilarious.
 

Kitsunelaine

My favorite cake is pie
The Fallen
Oct 25, 2017
5,874
Weirdly misleading article. "I'm an idiot for failing at what I intended to do" is not "I'm an idiot for doing what I intended to do".
 

FairyEmpire

Member
Oct 25, 2017
15,665
He might be calling himself an idiot for the wrong reason but I'd like to generalise for him and with that I would agree.

Already a couple of Muskies in this thread having to preface their statements before they criticise him that he's a "genius" and doing "amazing things". It's hilarious.
I am far from a Musky, but thanks for the concern. I don't follow him enough to know how well he handles his company, so I should probably add "he MAY be". He definitely is an idiot when it comes to interacting with people.
 

TokyoJoe

Member
Oct 28, 2017
904
I'm still on the Elon train. People say stupid things and it's great that he knows he said something hurtful and attacked a man trying to help something that could have turned out very tragic. Good on him.
 

Arkanim94

Member
Oct 27, 2017
5,114
You don’t become one of the richest people on earth from scratch by being an idiot. Don’t be silly.
You can be good at having rich parents creating futuristic technology and still be a idiot piece of shit along the way.
Example: Elon Musk.

I'm still on the Elon train. People say stupid things and it's great that he knows he said something hurtful and attacked a man trying to help something that could have turned out very tragic. Good on him.
He didn't apologise FFS.
You people are tools.
 

LewieP

Member
Oct 26, 2017
8,238
Finally he's saying something I can get behind.

Edit: and this idiot is going to have to pay up. The whole trial is a massive embarrassment for him, and I'm going to take pleasure in his comeuppance.
 

Lowrys

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,256
London
...How? It immediately follows him giving an excuse for why he said what he did to Buzzfeed. You can read that "still" as "despite me having that intent" or "despite me thinking that".
It immediately follows the stuff about thinking Buzzfeed wouldn't publish it. So he's saying despite thinking Buzzfeed wouldn't publish it, he's a fucking idiot for saying it at all. That's the most natural interpretation of his words.

If he was just referring to him thinking Buzzfeed wouldn't publish it, the "still" wouldn't be needed.

For the record, I think what he said was despicable and I hope he gets trashed in court.
 

L Thammy

Spacenoid
Member
Oct 25, 2017
16,203
It immediately follows the stuff about thinking Buzzfeed wouldn't publish it. So he's saying despite thinking Buzzfeed wouldn't publish it, he's a fucking idiot for saying it at all. That's the most natural interpretation of his words.

If he was just referring to him thinking Buzzfeed wouldn't publish it, the "still" wouldn't be needed.

For the record, I think what he said was despicable and I hope he gets trashed in court.
The most natural reading is that the "still" is to emphasize that the fault is on him as in that statement and not on Buzzfeed as the preceding statements might suggest. The natural reading is certainly not that "still" changes the entire topic of conversation.
 

danm999

Member
Oct 29, 2017
5,965
Sydney
He really is an idiot. He’s served up so much damaging material for Unsworth’s legal representation to prove malice and shred any defence or mitigating factors for the defamation. Cannot even imagine what Musk must be like as a client.