Economics · Elites

The Implications of Tesla’s Massive 10% Layoff

Today’s big story is that Tesla is going to lay off an incredible 10% (or more) of its workforce. The company employs about 140,000 people, so this means that at least ca. 14,000 people will get the boot. If this story was about some industry dinosaur like IBM or Microsoft, it would be business as usual, but as we are talking about Tesla, I would like to point out a few implications.

1) Tesla is an incorporated grifting scheme.

If you spend some time studying trends in the startup scene, you will notice that there is a sizeable number that only tries to exploit current market follies. When bitcoin was all the rage, the number of downright fraudulent startups was off the charts. The same was true for Artificial Intelligence, the Internet of Things (IoT), Augmented Reality (AR), and all the other bullshit tech bros. dream up. While the aforementioned schemes aim to exploit gullible investors, Tesla has a different angle: this company was backed by the US government via tax incentives. Most certainly, the US strong-armed its vassal states to also incentivize sales of Tesla cars, thus creating artificial demand, perhaps also with the intention to weaken the European car industry.

2) The age of large-scale grifting is nearing its end

A lot of the excesses we have seen in the global economy since the 2007-08 financial crisis was due to excessive money printing. This led to asset-price inflation as well as shocking misallocation of resources. There are companies around that are supposedly worth dozens of billions of dollars, yet never or hardly ever made a profit.  Of course, if you get access to virtually endless amounts of free money, it is very easy to build up a large company while you are lining your own pockets. I do not want to dismiss Elon Musk’s entrepreneurial successes, but Tesla seems like a downright cynical venture. Now that money is no longer free and people need to watch their expenses, they are no longer inclined to splurge on a poorly made battery-powered car.

Speaking of expenses, not only can you get a regular car for a lot less than an EV, they are also easier to maintain and likely keep their value for longer. The battery in an EV will lose its capacity quickly, and good luck selling an old EV! Thus, getting an EV does not make economic sense compared to a regular car that you could easily drive for fifteen or more years if you wanted to. Very few people, though, are in a position to get a second or third car just for the purpose of virtue signalling, so the market is quite limited.

3) People care less about the climate change hoax

It used to be the case that you got kudos for buying an electric vehicle. You were on the right side of history because your car clearly has zero emissions (lol) and you are also a proud environmentalist. Let us, however, ignore the cost of rare-earth mining and how the electricity of your fancy Tesla gets produced. However, if you need to watch your expenses, then the virtue signalling of driving an EV seems like an unaffordable luxury.

There are also practical implications of EV ownership that are not very appealing. For instance, in sub-zero temperatures — remember all this global warming bullshit? — battery-powered cars are quite useless. They take a lot longer to charge and their reach is reduced. Oh, charging is also a real pain in the neck all year round compared to filling the tank with gasoline or diesel. We are talking about two minutes or so at the pump versus forty or fifty minutes for charging, and good luck if you live in a place where chargers are not readily available because this means that charging takes even longer as you have to first get to the charging station, and hope that nobody is using it.

On a side note, I am also interested in the implications on one’s carbon footprint if your EV goes up in flames, which leads to the release of toxic chemicals, and to keeping a fire brigade busy for hours. I wonder if out hostile elites also considered that when looking for lame excuses to subsidize the EV industry. This is the most obvious sign that EVs are not good for the environment and a car that is burning for hours is a lot harder to ignore than laborers somewhere in China mining rare-earth minerals.

4) Empty promises have an expiry date

For probably over a decade Tesla promised fully autonomous driving. It would always happen “next year”. Autonomous driving was a wonderful grift for a lot of startups as well. Yet, the problem with AI is that there are a lot of edge cases and it is not good enough to kind of get it right, almost all the time. Tesla’s autopilot software killed people. Obviously, this was (hopefully) not deliberate, but it nonetheless happened. Autonomous driving may be many decades away and I would not even bet on it appearing ever. AI-skepticism is not a popular stance. It is much easier to dream up some bullshit instead of solving difficult technical problems. Also, people working in this field have a vested interest in promoting their work, so they will keep telling lies until there is no longer any funding left to get.

Elon Musk also promised a cheap entry-level electric car that his company would sell for $25k. This car does not seem to be coming, after all. I wonder if it ever really existed beyond the vaporware stage. Sure, it was a great marketing device to keep interest in the company and boost the stock price. There is a limit with regards to how long you can keep people waiting, though. Tesla reached and possibly exceeded the level of aloof princesses who keep a bunch of thirsty guys around in case they need them for chores, while they are having fun with Chad. Yet, just as those women age and eventually hit the proverbial wall, so did Tesla’s incessant empty promises have to face reality eventually.

On a final note, I am not completely opposed to EV technology. In fact, one of the most interesting recent cars is the 2024 Toyota Prius, a hybrid-EV. I like its look a lot albeit I think that it is pretty expensive. On a related note, unlike Tesla, Toyota has not built their business on hype. I also assume that their cars are of a higher quality, simply based on the fact that Tesla is infamous for its shoddy manufacturing.

9 thoughts on “The Implications of Tesla’s Massive 10% Layoff

  1. Everything fake and gay was fueled by free debt. Look at how awful the job market is for anything related to tech, wokegeld, finance once the money ran out.

    1. „Everything fake and gay was fueled by free debt.“

      Does this include Bitcoin as well?

    2. Yes, cryptocurrencies also took off due to ZIRP. Money was essentially free, so everything looked like a good investment. Also, there is the additional effect that money printing led to inflation. However, because Bitcoin is de-inflationary as its supply is capped, its value also went up because the value of the US dollar went down.

    3. The current situation in tech is quite interesting. It is slowly dawning on people that they were living in a complete fantasy world where some ditz could go from being a barista to bossing nerds around as a “product manager” at Facebook, pulling down $200k, despite a complete lack of skills. This is over now. My LinkedIn feed is full of people in tech-adjacent roles, but also people with a proper tech background, who are lamenting how hard the job market is. On the plus side, ZIRP also got us those “day in the life” videos that showed us yet again how vain women are, and how little they are able to reflect on their life. To them, it seemed normal to make six figures for “vibing with their team members” and “drinking red wine on tap” at Twitter.

    1. This is fantastic news! It seems we are clearly past the peak of leftist grifting. There are a few problems for these people: first, tech companies need to watch their expenses, so they cannot put people on payroll who cannot do the work. Second, and related, tech jobs have gotten a lot more difficult to get. This undermines the entire tech-bootcamp scam. Third, ESG/DIE is on the way out. BlackRock has been losing too much money to keep going.

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