Tesla/SpaceX CEO Elon Musk suffers no fools in his ranks, and when they expose themselves he gets out ye ol’ chopping block.
According to The Verge, a few SpaceX employees who were aghast by Musk openly pushing Republicans on his Twitter feed and decided to get together and write an open letter denouncing Musk’s “behavior” on Twitter:
“Elon’s behavior in the public sphere is a frequent source of distraction and embarrassment for us, particularly in recent weeks,” the letter states. “As our CEO and most prominent spokesperson, Elon is seen as the face of SpaceX — every Tweet that Elon sends is a de facto public statement by the company. It is critical to make clear to our teams and to our potential talent pool that his messaging does not reflect our work, our mission, or our values.”
The company’s “mission” and its “values” are not theirs to declare. Musk is the owner of the company and those kinds of decisions belong to him. The employees who wrote this letter seem to not understand this.
Oh, but it gets better. These employees had a list of demands too. They were as follows.
- Publicy address and condemn Elon’s harmful Twitter behavior
- Hold all leadership equally accountable to making SpaceX a great place to work for everyone
- Define and uniformly respond to all forms of unnacceptable behavior
The employees effectively wanted SpaceX to denounce its own owner and also somehow bring Elon down a peg.
Any competent leader would immediately respond, and respond Musk did. These employees are now fired according to Axios:
Gwynne Shotwell, SpaceX’s president and COO, said in an email to employees on Thursday first obtained by the Times that the company investigated and “terminated a number of employees involved” with the letter, though it was unclear how many employees were fired.
According to Shotwell, the letter made employees feel uncomfortable beacuse it “intimidated and bullied” other employees that “pressured them to sign onto something that did not reflect their views.” It was, according to Shotwell, wholly inappropriate.
She’s right. This was an attempted mutiny by people who had watched success with this kind of strategy happen at places like Disney. The only difference is that SpaceX isn’t led by incompetents who view politics as more important than product and results. These employees finding themselvs jobless was the only proper response.
In any other time in our history this would have been the only possible outcome, but in today’s world, people have been taught that activists hold more power than everyone.
Noam Blum described this mentality perfectly in a series of tweets:
“The internet has made these activist idiots way too f***ing comfortable s***ting where they eat and it’s nice to see the increasingly ensuing coprophagy. Career pro-tip: Don’t trash your boss in public if you want to keep working there. Felicia’s Razor,” he tweeted.
Blum is right. These employees weren’t trying to make SpaceX a better place to work at for everyone, they wanted to make SpaceX a place that worked for them. Like every other entitled ideologist, they wanted the company to carry their political message and make people who disagreed with their message look dumb. They probably thought they would be lauded as heroes and would affect real change.
They did. They exposed themselves as political activists within the company, allowing management to clean house and make the business stronger. Now, it can fully focus on building rockets that take us to incredible places instead of focusing on divisive political posturing like so many other corporations have fallen into.
Musk and Shotwell made the right move. Like Red Bull before them, they got rid of the political terrorists in their midst with a quick swing of a figurative ax.