Oct 12, 2022 • 1HR 27M

Elon Musk, Twitter, and the Future of American Oligarchy

First ever cross-over episode, with Isaac Simpson of The Carousel Podcast

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What are the implications of Elon Musks’ purchase of Twitter? Is it just another Oligarch pissing his money into the wind like Zuckerberg is doing with Meta? Or does Musk have much grander political machinations in mind? Isaac and I discuss this and more in the first ever cross-over episode, to be published here and on his pod at The Carousel.

Note: I said Bill Gates was able to get the contract with American schools to put Dell laptops in every classroom, when in fact what he did was get Microsoft Windows on the laptops used in Americas schools. I also said OnlyFans “went public.” It never went public, it simply rapidly expanded (we covered a lot and I was drinking cider, these snafus happen on episodes that are off the top of our heads, as this one was). The wider point still stands: being an “oligarch” means two things, potentially: using your money and influence to get your company sweet deals with the government, thereby eradicating the variable of competition in the market. All oligarchs, including Musk, are good at this. Tesla is such a good bet because the “green new deal” means tax payer money producing batteries for the vehicles, Bezos gets massive tax breaks for building warehouses around the country, and Gates…well gates deserves his own episode.

But the other thing being an oligarch means is holding power directly. America is in its new phase of oligarchy, as we all know, with this generation of tech billionaires. Currently, none of them seem to have direct aspirations for political office or naked power. But Musk looks poised to go that direction with his purchase of twitter and his recent comments on politics. Only time will tell if we have a situation analogous to the First Triumvirate of Rome, or just a bunch of attention hungry, spoiled rich kids with too much money to play with.

Music at the end by @pulp_vril on twitter. Give him and Isaac a follow, Isaac is @disgracedprop.

I’m off twitter for now, but if you’re on telegram follow me at https://t.me/astralplanewalker