Elon Musk uses his influence to sway public opinion and does not hide it.
The billionaire and CEO of Tesla (TSLA) regularly shares with his more than 102 million followers on Twitter his positions, his emotions and his anger. Sometimes when he's down, those millions of die-hard fans and admirers ask him what they can do to help.
Such was the case recently when Musk dismissed the Wall Street Journal revelations that he had allegedly had an affair with Nicole Shanahan, the wife of Google co-founder and friend Sergey Brin. According to the WSJ, this alleged affair would have caused a breakdown in the friendship between the two tech tycoons.
Musk Has a Passionate Fan Base
"This is total bs," Musk reacted on Twitter on July 24. "Sergey and I are friends and were at a party together last night! I’ve only seen Nicole twice in three years, both times with many other people around. Nothing romantic."
"The character assassination attacks have reached a new level this year, but the articles are all nothing-burgers. I work crazy hours, so there just isn’t much time for shenanigans," Musk also said. "None of the key people involved in these alleged wrongdoings were even interviewed!"
"Is there anything we can do?" then asked another user.
"Call them out on it, I guess. WSJ is supposed to have a high standard for journalism and, right now, they are way sub tabloid," Musk responded. "WSJ should be running stories that actually matter to their readers and have solid factual basis, not third-party random hearsay."
This exchange shows the power that Musk wields on millions of people around the world. He is aware of this influence which now extends beyond economic circles. He wants to transform the world. The mogul does not see himself as a business leader but more as a visionary whose mission is to do, as he said himself, "useful things for civilization."
One of those useful things probably also includes a new philosophy at a time when most of the dominant ideologies (capitalism, communism, liberalism, social democracy, socialism etc) are failing. The covid-19 pandemic showed their limits, while the emergence of new ideologies such as wokism and its various counterparts such as ESG (social, environment and governance) are hotly contested. Opponents, including Musk, of the latter ideology consider it discriminating and say it is cancel culture.
'Curiosity About The Universe'
In the absence of a unifying ideology, the serial entrepreneur believes it is time for a new philosophy to emerge. And he has an idea of what this one could be: "curiosity about the Universe."
He outlined it on Twitter following a message posted by young entrepreneur, investor and blogger Sam Altman.
"The cultural arc over the past few years from wokism to pessimism to nihilism is racist, sucks, and doesn’t even matter anyway," Altman lamented in his tweet on July 27. "On a serious note, at least the first two cultural movements had some real positives. I fear that nihilism is going to poison a generation for no gain."
That's when Musk stepped in.
"A new philosophy of the future is needed," he commented.
He then repeated this idea in a separate post and he then gave the main guidelines.
"A new philosophy of the future is needed," he insisted. "I believe it should be curiosity about the Universe – expand humanity to become a multiplanet, then interstellar, species to see what’s out there."
Basically, this ideology is impermeable and independent of cultural and political influences. It ignores ideological differences and current divisions in America and beyond. It seems that this philosophy transcends these issues to impose one thing: curiosity.
It's almost a post-current or post-divisional philosophy. Musk seems to be betting that the urge to discover other planets could heal current wounds and bring people together.
It is important to note that he uses the word "philosophy", which arouses less passion than "ideology".
What About God?
And to reach and convince the widest possible audience, the billionaire then added that this philosophy was not incompatible with God or religion.
"This is compatible with existing religions – surely God would want us to see Creation?"
This addition is not insignificant. Since announcing that he will vote Republican in the mid-terms and that his favorite candidate for the 2024 presidential election is Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis, Musk has become a star among conservatives.
His recurring criticisms of the progressive wing of the Democratic Party have greatly increased his popularity in conservative ranks even though Musk, the man of science, has never really spoken about faith publicly.
"Elon, do you believe in God or some sort of a 'creator'?" one of his fans asked on July 27.
Musk did not respond but in May when a similar remark was made, the billionaire made the comment.
"Thank you for the blessing, but I’m ok with going to hell, if that is indeed my destination, since the vast majority of all humans ever born will be there."