Elon Musk Catches Flak For Allegedly Using Mafia Tactics To Silence A Tesla Critic
A prominent Tesla critic is accusing tech entrepreneur Elon Musk of threatening to sue his employer and ruin his career if the financial analyst continues shorting the electric vehicle company.
A self-proclaimed investment strategist known online only as “Montana Skeptic” claimed in a blog post Wednesday that Musk obtained his private information after Tesla devotees doxed him and published the information online. Montana voluntarily stepped away from publishing about Tesla to protect his employer from possible legal ramifications if Musk did decide to sue.
“My colleague then spoke with me about the phone call. We both agreed that Mr. Musk’s phone call and threatened lawsuit were actions that would tend to involve our employer in matters in which he has had no part,” he explained before noting that his time as a contributor at Seeking Alpha was ending. “I offered to immediately cease writing.”
Montana made the accusation less than a week after Twitter user @shortshorterhmm published his person information online. He has tangled with Tesla fans in the past, including inserting himself into a drawn out social media spat with journalist Dan Neil, who gave the Tesla Model 3 a positive review in a July 19 editorial for The Wall Street Journal. Neil dinged his Twitter account shortly after the July 20 interaction.
Musk also reacted to the back and forth between Neil and Montana. “Worth another retweet. Hope Dan Neil returns to Twitter,” Musk said in a tweet Thursday. “He (Neil) left due to relentless attacks from short-sellers, who constantly peddle fear, uncertainty & doubt about Tesla. Dan won the Pulitzer & is considered by many to be the best car critic in the world.”
Montana also mixed it up with YouTube personality Galileo Russell during a July 17 episode of Quoth the Raven, a podcast hosted by Christopher Irons to discuss news about Tesla. Russell and Montana argued for more than an hour about issues ranging from Tesla’s financial status to the company’s future
Russel, a Tesla acolyte and host of the “HyperChange TV,” is perhaps best-known as the internet celebrity who managed to ask Musk a series of questions during a bizarre June 3 earnings call with members of the press. (RELATED: ‘Thin-Skinned Bully’: Elon Musk Is Owning The Media And CNN Does Not Like It)
“Excuse me. Next. Boring, bonehead questions are not cool. Next?” Musk said after an analyst from Bernstein lobbed a volley of questions at Deepak Ahuja, Tesla’s chief financial officer, about capital expenditures. He went on to knock down questions from other analysts and journalists present on the call.
“We’re gonna go to YouTube. Sorry. These questions are so dry. They’re killing me,” he said before giving the floor to Russell whose YouTube show has more than 9,000 subscribers. He posed several questions regarding Tesla’s willingness to allow other electric vehicle companies to plug into the Silicon Valley automaker’s charging stations.
Tesla has meanwhile struggled to hit crucial deadlines for the Model 3, a vehicle many believe could make or break Musk’s foray into the automotive industry. Analysts and credit agencies have not so far been impressed with Tesla’s output.
Moody’s dropped Tesla’s credit rating in March and changed the company’s outlook to negative as the fledgling Model 3’s production dwindles while the automaker’s financial situation grows dim. (RELATED: ‘Unusual’: Elon Musk Appears To Have Nervous Breakdown During Bizarre Tesla Earnings Call)
Tesla will need to raise more money in the near future to meet its cash needs, the credit rating agency claimed. Moody’s labeled the electric car marker a substantial risk for investors willing to dive headfirst into the auto market.
Tesla has not responded to questions about Moody’s downgrade, according to a CNBC report. S&P adjusted the company’s credit down to a negative B rating in April 2017 — it also holds a negative outlook for Tesla going forward.
Neither Montana nor Tesla have responded to The Daily Caller News Foundation’s repeated request for comment for this article.