Time magazine chose this Monday the founder of Tesla and SpaceX, Elon Musk, “the richest man in the world,” as the most influential person of 2021.
The publication highlights Musk’s aeronautical company with which he “puts satellites into orbit” and his electric vehicles, in addition to his ability to make the shares of the New York Stock Exchange rise or fall by a simple comment of his, usually through Twitter.
“With a flick of his finger, the stock market soars or swoons. An army of devotees hangs on his every utterance,” the magazine wrote.
Time describes him as unparalleled, “the man who aspires to save our planet and get us a new one to inhabit,” also as a genius, as an entrepreneur and a showman.
The magazine emphasizes that 2021 has been Musk’s year, as in April his company SpaceX won an exclusive contract with the NASA space agency to return American astronauts to the Moon for the first time since 1972.
In May, he hosted the famous TV show Saturday Night Live and in October, the car rental company Hertz announced that it planned to buy 100 Tesla vehicles to add to its catalog.
Among other seismic movements triggered by his tweets this year, the revaluation of the Dogecoin cryptocurrency stands out, which soared after Musk wrote a couple of messages about this currency that was born in 2013 as a joke.
“A few short years ago, Musk was roundly mocked as a crazy con artist on the verge of going broke. Now this shy South African with Asperger’s syndrome, who escaped a brutal childhood and overcame personal tragedy, bends governments and industry to the force of his ambition,” writes Time in the article accompanying the billionaire’s designation as the “Person of the Year.”
The publication, which for nearly 100 years has been designating the person of the year based on the influence they have exerted for better or worse during the current year, notes with irony “few individuals have had more influence than Musk on life on Earth, and potentially life off Earth too.”