(UPDATED 5/20/2022, 12:15 AM to include a reply tweet from Elon Musk.)
Elon Musk’s pending deal to acquire Twitter has caused an earthquake in the political sphere, with the news industry and the broader left gnashing their teeth at the proposition that there could be one major social media company that isn’t grossly biased against conservatives.
Given that, anyone with any forethought knew that the hits were coming. Musk himself warned on Wednesday that the political attacks were about to escalate.
Political attacks on me will escalate dramatically in coming months
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 18, 2022
Well, on Thursday, they escalated. Business Insider, a far-left rag, published a thinly sourced hit piece accusing Musk of exposing himself to and propositioning a flight attendant. According to the report, she was paid a $250,000 severance after filing a complaint with SpaceX.
SpaceX, the aerospace firm founded by Elon Musk, the world’s wealthiest man, paid a flight attendant $250,000 to settle a sexual misconduct claim against Musk in 2018, Insider has learned.
The attendant worked as a member of the cabin crew on a contract basis for SpaceX’s corporate jet fleet. She accused Musk of exposing his erect penis to her, rubbing her leg without consent, and offering to buy her a horse in exchange for an erotic massage, according to interviews and documents obtained by Insider.
The incident, which took place in 2016, is alleged in a declaration signed by a friend of the attendant and prepared in support of her claim. The details in this story are drawn from the declaration as well as other documents, including email correspondence and other records shared with Insider by the friend.
As per usual with these types of media-led accusations, the documents in question are not shared in the story. The actual source is a single, anonymous “friend” of the woman who was supposedly paid off over the alleged incident. That makes it impossible to ascertain the veracity of the report. Are there missing details? What do the documents actually say? Was the account disputed or admitted to by Musk? What evidence was provided that the encounter happened as described in the story?
The allegations are six years old and were apparently kept under wraps by an NDA until this point. That they are coming to light now, just as Musk is about to take a major weapon away from the left, is hardly a coincidence.
Musk responded by asserting that there’s more to the story.
After Insider contacted Musk for comment, he emailed to ask for more time to respond and said there is “a lot more to this story.”
“If I were inclined to engage in sexual harassment, this is unlikely to be the first time in my entire 30-year career that it comes to light,” he wrote, calling the story a “politically motivated hit piece.”
The timing of this is impossible to ignore, and it mirrors tactics the left has used in the past against figures such as now-Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. More recently, Business Insider attempted to take down Dave Portnoy with a supposed sexual scandal that has now dissipated.
Still, I’ll leave room for the possibility the accusation happened as described. The lack of information complicates matters, though. If this began as a nude, full-body massage, which is what the story says, what exactly did “exposing” himself entail? The report also claims he touched her leg without consent. Did he brush up against it in passing? Or did he actively reach out and touch her?
Again, the lack of details is the problem, and it’s why these stories should never make it to print. Some semblance of journalist ethics should dictate that it takes more to destroy someone’s life than an anonymous source and some undisclosed documents.
As to what this means for the Twitter deal? I have no idea whether there’s some kind of morality clause that could kill things, but my guess is the current Twitter leadership finds a way out, handing the left another victory. Remember, Joe Biden had an on-the-record accuser, and the news media completely ignored it (or actively defended him). But they hate Elon Musk, so the long knives are out. This is just the beginning, and he better be ready with more than some witty social media comments.
A few hours after the story posted, Musk tweeted defiantly that “nothing will deter me from fighting for a good future and your right to free speech.”
The attacks against me should be viewed through a political lens – this is their standard (despicable) playbook – but nothing will deter me from fighting for a good future and your right to free speech
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 20, 2022
If anyone can withstand the Left’s attacks, it’s Elon Musk.
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