Tesla CEO Elon Musk did not hold back his disdain of the Securities and Exchange Commission during a “60 Minutes” interview Sunday as the Silicon Valley company battles investigations targeting its founder.
“I want to be clear. I do not respect the SEC,” Musk told the program’s host, Lesley Stahl. His comments come less than three months after Tesla was made to pay down a $20 million fine with the SEC over allegations Musk committed fraud.
Musk has gone after federal agency in the past on Twitter. He appeared to poke fun at the SEC on the social media platform in October after the agency punished him in September for fraud. (RELATED: ‘Twitter Is A War Zone’: Elon Musk Explains Why He Uses Social Media To Troll His Critics)
“Just want to [sic] that the Shortseller Enrichment Commission is doing incredible work. And the name change is so on point!” Musk wrote in a tweet less than a week after agreeing to pay a fine for suggesting in an August tweet that he obtained funds to take Tesla private.
The mercurial CEO also explained his belligerent Twitter behavior. “I use my tweets to express myself,” he told Stahl. “Some people use their hair. I tweet.” He also noted that “Twitter is a war zone” where only the toughest survive.
Journalists are often on the receiving end of Musk’s barbs.
He accused reporters of defending “child rapists” in September for supposedly going after him instead of fleshing out whether British caver Vernon Unsworth is a pedophile. Unsworth, who lives in Thailand, dinged Musk at the time for giving Thai officials a small submarine to help rescue several children stuck in a cave.
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