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Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said Tuesday that Joe Biden’s Build Back Better plan should be “canned” by Congress and recommended that representatives “don’t pass it.”
While the tech mogul admitted that “no one at Tesla (…) thinks about it at all, really,” he said during the Wall Street Journal‘s CEO Council Summit that “it might be better” for Congress not to pass it given that the federal budget and national debt “is insane.”
Musk believes that the government’s role should be that of “referee” instead of acting as “a player on the field”, given that its intervention in the economy only fulfills a regulatory role.
In that sense, the businessman believes that “the government should get out of the way and not impede progress”, and that the increasing intervention of the State in economic matters is one of the main problems in the United States.
“Rules and regulations are immortal,” Musk continued. “The vast majority of rules and regulations live forever. And so, if more rules and regulations are applied every year and they just keep growing and growing, eventually it just takes longer and longer and gets harder to do things (…) there’s not really an effective garbage collection system for removing rules and regulations.”
Regarding subsidies, Musk said Tesla has not been the recipient of any federal tax subsidies in the past two years. When moderator Joanna Stern pointed out that Build Back Better includes funds to expand electric vehicle charging infrastructure, the Tesla CEO’s response was direct: “Unnecessary.”
“Do we need support for gas stations? We don’t,” Musk continued. “I’m literally saying get rid of all subsidies. Also for oil and gas.”
When Stern wanted to close the Build Back Better issue, Musk quickly interjected, insisting, “Seriously, we shouldn’t pass. If we don’t cut Government spending, something really bad’s going to happen.”
Musk sees the state as a huge corporation
The creator of Starlink thinks that even if the American government “zero out” of all the billionaires, it would not be able to fix the fiscal deficit.
In fact, the tycoon believes that the state is the largest and most powerful businessman there is, and yet it has demonstrated “very poor skills” in capital allocation.
“The government is simply the biggest corporation, with a monopoly on violence and where you have no recourse,” he said. “It’s the only one that’s allowed to legally do violence.”
The businessman clarified that he does not believe that the government “should do anything”, but that the purpose is to “minimize” the action of the State in the economy, given that its efficiency with respect to spending will always be “lower (…) by a lot” than that of a competent commercial company.