The communications chief for SpaceX, the space launch company created by politically well-connected billionaire businessman Elon Musk, posted on Twitter and Facebook, the statement, “Donald Trump, we will tear down your wall. I promise.” This came from Dex Torricke-Barton, the Head of Communications for SpaceX. Clearly this statement indicates that SpaceX and Musk intend to strongly oppose the agenda of the president-elect, Donald Trump.
Musk himself has come out against Trump. Interviewed last week by CNBC, he said, “I feel a bit stronger that [Trump] is not the right guy. He doesn’t seem to have the sort of character that reflects well on the United States.” Yet Musk doesn’t seem to worry how it looks when he donated to the campaign of Hillary Clinton, who has been under FBI investigation for alleged improper handling of classified and top secret email communications while she was Secretary of State.
Musk is the creator of three companies, built almost entirely on government money in the amount of more than $4.9 billion, that include SpaceX, the luxury electric car maker Tesla, and the solar panel company SolarCity that is about to be merged into Tesla. Musk has strong ties to well-established politicians. He has donated numerous times in the past to President Obama and most recently gave contributions to the campaign of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Musk has donated $7300 to Hillary Clinton since 2008, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. Additionally, Bloomberg news reported in 2015 the headline “Elon Musk Helps California Rank No. 1 for Hillary Clinton Fundraising. Musk, along with actor Leonardo DiCaprio and producer Steven Spielberg, helped raise money in California for Clinton in 2015.
Between the years of 2007 and 2011, Musk gave donations of $7300 to the presidential campaign of Barack Obama. The Center for Responsive Politics reports he gave two contributions of $2500 in April of 2011 as well as another $2300 in July of 2007. Not only has he donated to Obama’s campaign, but White House records show Musk has visited there a dozen times between the period of time from 2010 to 2015.
Musk also joined about a dozen big names from the tech industry to have dinner with President Barack Obama “at Michelin-Starred Restaurant” in Presidio Heights, Business Insider reported. He also attended a fundraiser for Obama in 2011 that cost $35,800 for each attendee.
Musk is well connected to the political establishment, and he’s leveraged his crony capitalist status to convince politicians to sink almost $5 billion of taxpayer money into his corporate empire. But that pales in comparison with what he plans to do next. He wants to spend more than $10 billion in taxpayer money, according to Vanity Fair, to colonize Mars by the 2020s. SpaceX can’t even consistently launch rockets carrying satellites without often having them blow up. How does Musk think his company will complete manned space flights to Mars with sustaining unacceptable human casualties?
Musk’s unrealistic dreams are largely failures, and they’ve come at heavy expense to American taxpayers. Nearly five billion has yet to lead to long-term profitability, or any substantial public demand in the open market, for any of the product Musk’s companies are making. President-Elect Trump, and the leadership of Congress, should seriously think about it before granting another dollar of taxpayer money to Musk’s companies.