The once venerable Time magazine has announced it’s 2021 Person of the Year. And it’s Elon Musk.
ARE. YOU. FUCKING. KIDDING. ME.
Rep. Pramila Jayapal (WA-7) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (MA) both emailed me, appalled. Here’s Warren:
This year, so many people have worked so hard to help our communities get through this pandemic.
Doctors. Nurses. Scientists, researchers, everyone who’s gotten vaccines into arms. Educators and staff who’ve gotten kids safely into school. All the people who’ve taken care of loved ones, gone to work day after day, and pitched in to keep our country running.
But you know who’s gracing the cover of Time Magazine as their “Person of the Year”?
Elon Musk — a poster child for how our rigged tax code lets billionaires pay hardly any taxes at all. Let’s take a spin through some of his greatest hits:
In 2018, he paid zero dollars in federal income taxes.
From 2014 to 2018, he got $13.9 billion richer but only paid 3.27% of that new wealth in taxes.
During the first year of the pandemic, he got about $143 billion richer while millions of Americans struggled to put food on the table and keep a roof over their heads.
Jayapal points out much the same thing:
We can’t believe Time Magazine just named Elon Musk its “Person of the Year.” Musk is the richest person in the world and yet he avoids paying his taxes while working families struggle to put food on the table and pay rent.
While so many have lost their jobs and health insurance during this pandemic, the rich have only gotten richer and the wealthy have watched their profits skyrocket. National magazines should be honoring frontline heroes and those working towards a fairer, more just society. Not a billionaire who paid nothing — not a single penny — in federal taxes in 2018.
[emphasis in original]
Warren and Jayapal (and other Dem congresscritters the party hates and disempowers in favor of its conservatives) are working on an Ultra-Millionaire Tax Act, which would slap a minimum tax on wealth over $50 million, i.e. not just income, and plug up the more egregious tax loopholes that allow the super rich to avoid paying any taxes at all. It’s a lovely idea, but I’m certain that even if it passes into law with some teeth still in it – a huuuuge IF – the super rich will find a way around it, with eager assistance from Big Banksters.
But there are many other reasons to despise Mr. Musk that are at least as compelling. I mean hell, he is hardly alone up at that altitude in the non-existent tax bracket.
Why, just one day after the exciting Person of the Year reveal, I saw this:
Six additional women file suits against Tesla alleging sexual harassment
The workers suing the electric vehicle company allege that it fostered a culture of sexual harassment at its Fremont, Calif., plant and other facilities. They say they were subjected to lewd comments and cat-calling, physically intimate touching and discrimination. The complaints follow a similar lawsuit filed last month in which a factory employee alleged “rampant sexual harassment at Tesla” and “nightmarish conditions” in its factories.
Read more (@WaPo)
It’s not like Time could not have known about such allegations before yesterday, because there’s also this:
A Tesla employee alleges sexual harassment is rampant at the California factory in a rare lawsuit
Jessica Barraza said she was subjected to near-daily catcalls and aggressive physical touching while working at the company’s Fremont, Calif., factory. She is suing the electric vehicle maker, alleging that the company’s hostile work environment triggered her anxiety, leading her to take medical leave. Multiple women have told The Post that they had been harassed at the factory.
Read more (@WaPo)
For those who require translation from Liberal-Media-Speak, “aggressive physical touching” means sexual assault. In California specifically, it means sexual battery, a misdemeanor punishable by up to six months in county jail and/or a fine up to $2,000.
Strangely, I haven’t heard about any prosecutions of Tesla employees. I wonder whether Time would put that story on its cover? LOL no, I’m kidding: I do not wonder whether Time would put that story on its cover. Everyone in the Western world now knows the answer to that.
Meanwhile, in totally unrelated news:
Senate approves massive defense bill directing independent review of Afghanistan errors, some military justice reforms
The legislation, which the House passed earlier this month, directs an independent review of the Afghanistan war’s legacy, and establishes a new means for the military to prosecute sexual assault and related crimes. President Biden is expected to sign the legislation into law quickly.
Read more (@WaPo)
How massive? $768 billion. When the House passed it, Politico reported “In a bipartisan blowout, 181 Democrats teamed with 135 Republicans to push the bill across the finish line.”
Lest we forget, this is The Richest Country Ever In The World Ever™. You know, the one where homeless rates have been rising for four years, 12 million children are going hungry, nearly one in a hundred people are incarcerated, and medical debt is a growing problem that already afflicts one in four USians, with one in three delaying medical care due to cost. And of course all of those numbers are heavily skewed by race.
But never mind all that! Time magazine has spoken. The richest person in the world – coincidentally, a USian white dude – is Person of the Year! So the only question of importance today is what to send him, as an appropriate token of congratulations!
I’m thinking of a giant, custom glass golden dildo (<-um, NSFW) in the shape of his own rocket ship, with a handwritten note that says simply:
Go fuck yourself.
Or, ooh! Ooh! I know! Even better! Maybe we can all chip in and get him one of Jeff Bezos’ actual 60 ft. space penis rockets?
Same note, naturally.
And we need a second one for Time.