Dec 13, 2021
Elon Musk, the wealthiest human being in history, is Time's Person of the Year, and on Monday progressives reacted by mocking the magazine's selection and renewing calls for changing the U.S. tax code so that the Tesla co-founder and other plutocrats like him pay their fair share.
"Let's change the rigged tax code so the Person of the Year will actually pay taxes and stop freeloading off everyone else."
"Innovative of them to choose the worst person on the planet for this!" American Postal Workers' Union National senior digital strategist Jack Califano tweeted in response to the news.
In their Person of the Year profile, Time's editors swoon that Musk is a "man-god" who "dreams of Mars as he bestrides Earth, square-jawed and indomitable."
Readers also learn that "Elon Musk also likes to live-tweet his poops."
"'Just dropping some friends off at the pool,' the 50-year-old zillionaire informed his 66 million Twitter followers," the scatological scribes relate. "After an interval--21 minutes, if you must know--an update: 'Splish splash.'"
\u201cElon Musk has profiteered $184.8 billion during the pandemic, a 751% wealth increase. He coerced his workers into breaking state health rules to go back to the factories.\n\nBillionaires like him deserve no accolades.\n\nWe should uplift those who really build this country: Workers.\u201d— Institute for Policy Studies (@Institute for Policy Studies) 1639411171
The authors assure that while "Musk is easily cast as a hubristic supervillain, lumped in with the tech bros and space playboys, for whom money is scorekeeping and rockets are the ultimate toy," he is actually "different":
He's a manufacturing magnate--moving metal, not bytes. His rockets... reinvigorated America's space dreams and are launching satellites to expand Internet access across the globe... The man from the future where technology makes all things possible is a throwback to our glorious industrial past, before America stagnated and stopped producing anything but rules, restrictions, limits, obstacles, and Facebook.
The article does note that "Musk and many others in his tax bracket paid no individual federal taxes as recently as 2018 because they had no income, only assets." But it also claims he's "saved taxpayers billions" by privatizing what was once NASA's purview.
The advocacy group Americans for Tax Fairness offered a cover correction:
"Let's change the rigged tax code so the Person of the Year will actually pay taxes and stop freeloading off everyone else," suggested Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), lead sponsor of the Ultra-Millionaire Tax Act of 2021.
The bill's primary House sponsor, Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), tweeted, "It's *TIME* for Elon Musk to pay his fair share in taxes."
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