Elon Musk, the billionaire space entrepreneur and CEO of SpaceX and Tesla Inc., was named the latest ‘Person of the Year by Time Magazine yesterday. According to Time, Elon Musk exemplified the dramatic shifts in technology this year, and his inventive ideas aided people all across the world.
Time editor-in-chief Edward Felsenthal noted, “Musk’s ascension coincides with bigger trends, of which he and his fellow technological magnates are part cause and part effect.”
Felsenthal identified some of these tendencies “the erosion of conventional institutions in favor of people; government dysfunction that has given businesses more authority and responsibility; and wealth and opportunity disparities.
“The honor, which went to President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris last year, was previously defined by Time editors as going to persons who “embodied what was important about the year, for better or worse.”
Musk’s electric car company was valued at over a trillion dollars in October, and SpaceX has partnered with NASA to launch numerous missions, including a test flight to defend Earth from an asteroid.
According to Forbes’ real-time billionaire’s list, the arrogant South African-born 50-year-old has seen his wealth jump to nearly $250 billion during the pandemic. He’s also courted controversy with his inflammatory Twitter feed, which can criticize, joke, and provoke, including a poll in November asking if he should sell a 10% stake in Tesla.
Musk’s radical vision is accompanied by a character that is a “blank instrument that frequently seems to revel in divisiveness and hostile mocking as he offers the world access to his id via social media,” according to Felsenthal.
Musk has become increasingly visible in American culture in recent years, garnering 66 million Twitter followers and guest-hosting Saturday Night Live in May. Musk has expressed an interest in settling Mars and is planning orbital flights as part of SpaceX’s planned American return to the Moon next year.
“Overall, the goal has been to make life multi-planetary and enable mankind to become a spacefaring civilization,” Musk said in an interview with Time that coincided with the announcement of the Person of the Year.
— TIME (@TIME) December 13, 2021
“SpaceX has begun a program to remove CO2 from the atmosphere and convert it to rocket fuel. If you’re interested, please join “Later Monday, he tweeted an announcement that was both eye-catching and light on details.
Musk has been known to impact markets and the value of cryptocurrencies with a single tweet, but his greatest terrestrial effect, for the time being, is through his electric automobiles.
“Our goal with Tesla has always been to set an example for the auto industry, and we hope that others will follow suit and build electric cars as well so that we can expedite the transition to sustainable energy,” Musk told Time.
Interplanetary travel was formerly a collaborative enterprise that leaders used to unify their nations, but now private firms are increasingly involved, according to Time.
“To Musk, it is progress,” Felsenthal wrote, “guiding capital allocation away from the government and toward people who will be good custodians of it.” “To others, it is a testament to capitalism’s failures,” he continued, “as staggeringly affluent, primarily white men play by their own rules while the rest of society is left behind.”
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