JVL Rule #5: The Bad Guys Always Find Each Other
On Elon Musk’s embrace of antisemites.
Programing notes: No TNB tonight. We’ll be back at it next week with a very special guest you’re going to love.
We dropped a new Next Level episode last night. Sarah, Tim, and I talked a lot about the Biden age problem. Then we talked about The Discourse on the Biden age problem. Then we talked about Cletus and Foghorn Leghorn. It’s a pretty good show this week.
1. Elon and the Jews
Because capitalism is amazing, Elon Musk became the richest man in the world collecting government subsidies, selling a few hundred thousand cars a year,1 getting good at memes, and (allegedly) manipulating cryptocurrencies.
The free market is so good at allocating capital efficiently!
Anyway, this super normal guy who has nine children by three different women (funding secured?) and uses a lot of drugs is also sort of obsessed with the Jews.
Because of course.and put together a helpful primer on the situation. Here’s the basic shape of the story:
After buying Twitter in November 2022, Musk met with the Anti-Defamation League and promised that he would not let anyone the previous ownership had kicked off the platform come back unless a “content moderation council” went through a transparent process of re-evaluation.
Musk never created a “content moderation council.”
Instead, he declared a “general amnesty,” let all of the Nazis and antisemites back onto Twitter, and fired the company’s content moderation division.
Twitter’s advertising revenue cratered. Musk now claims that advertisers left Twitter because of the ADL’s criticisms of Twitter.
Elon says he is a “free speech absolutist.”
He claims he is going to sue the ADL for defamation.
You have to understand that everything about Musk (aside from his money) is bullshit. He was never going to create a “content moderation council.” He isn’t a “free speech absolutist.” He isn’t actually going to sue the ADL any more than he’s actually going to Mars.
Musk is just a guy who says things. Sometimes for attention. Sometimes because he’s mad. Sometimes because he’s high. None of it means anything. Don’t take him literally or seriously.
What’s meaningful about this story isn’t that Musk is playing footsie with Jew-hating Twitter users. It’s that Musk is an exemplar of JVL Rule #5: The bad guys always find each other.