In April, Tesla CEO Elon Musk took to Twitter to insult Microsoft founder Bill Gates by sharing a post comparing the latter to the pregnant man emoji with the caption “in case u need to lose a boner fast.”
The tweet was a response to accusations made the previous day by the SpaceX entrepreneur that Gates was shorting Tesla after leaked texts surfaced of him turning down a philanthropic opportunity with Gates.
Musk further tweeted at the time: “I heard from multiple people at TED that Gates still had half-billion short against Tesla, which is why I asked him, so it’s not exactly top secret,” explaining his offensive tweet of Saturday morning. Now, Bill Gates has responded, and as usual, he has done it in a much more graceful way.
A new interview surfaces
In an interview with French YouTuber HugoDécrypte published Thursday, Gates said: “Tesla’s not short of capital. Tesla’s done a fantastic job. The cars are great.” A very noble approach if you consider Musk’s Tweets on the philanthropist.
He went on to say: “I give a lot more money to climate change than Elon or anyone else. I give lots of philanthropic dollars. I back companies. Electric cars are about 16% of emissions. We need to solve that other 84%.”
Gates added: “He’s done a great job, but somebody shorting the stock doesn’t slow him down or hurt him in any way.”
Musk then replied on Twitter by simply writing the word “sigh.” We guess that’s a step up from a pregnant man emoji and an insult.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 4, 2022
At the time, when Musk accused Gates of shorting Tesla stocks, there were also rumors of leaked texts circulating of Gates reaching out to Musk for a philanthropic opportunity, an offer the latter had refused.
The leaked texts showed the following conversations between the two powerful men:
“Do you still have a half-billion-dollar short position against Tesla?” texted Musk.
“Sorry to say I haven’t closed it out. I would like to discuss philanthropy possibilities,” Gates replied.
Musk fired back: “Sorry, I cannot take your philanthropy on climate change seriously when you have a massive short position against Tesla, the company doing the most to solve climate change.”
Gates has always had a more positive approach than Musk to the relationship between the two. In the past, he has often even flattered Musk.
In an NYT opinion piece published last year, he said: “It’s important to say that what Elon did with Tesla is one of the greatest contributions to climate change anyone’s ever made. And you know, underestimating Elon is not a good idea.”
One has to wonder if they put the feud aside and worked together what good two of the richest man in the world could do for humanity.