I Wish that I Had Some Tesla Stock to Short

Matthew G. Saroff
5 min readMay 11, 2022


Tesla’s success right now is due to one thing, hype over Elon and the ferocity of his stans.

The technology that they use, AC propulsion and LiIon batteries, is now wide spread, and their competitors do not have the issues with poor manufacturing quality and abysmal customer service that Tesla does.

They also do not lie about the semi-autonomous driving capabilities of their cars, and come much closer to actual self-driving that Tesla does.

It used to be that it was just the short sellers were hating on Tesla and Musk, but now, with his impending takeover of Twitter, and today’s statement that he would allow Donald Trump to return to Twitter, hating Musk has gone mainstream in a big way.

Elon Musk said he would reverse Twitter’s ban on former president Donald Trump, articulating for the first time his stance on one of the most consequential decisions before him at the social media site he is acquiring.

“I do think it was not correct to ban Donald Trump. I think that was a mistake,” Musk said at an event Tuesday hosted by the Financial Times. “It alienated a large part of the country and did not ultimately result in Donald Trump not having a voice.”

He is referring to, “Truth Social,” Trump’s attempt to recreate Twitter.

It’s a ghost town, because people won’t go there to be trolled, and the trolls won’t go there because there is no one to troll.

The ban, he added, “was a morally bad decision, to be clear, and foolish in the extreme.” Twitter had banned Trump’s account shortly after a mob of Trump supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, citing the “risk of further incitement of violence.”

Donald Trump attempted to execute a coup, this was not a bad decision.

I get that Musk likes coups against democratically elected governments, he’s said so on (where else?) Twitter.

Musk — one of Twitter’s most prolific users, with more than 90 million followers — has agreed to purchase the social media company for roughly $44 billion, arguing that the site should host unfettered free speech and function as a “de facto town square.” He has broadly criticized Twitter’s content moderation decisions, arguing that the company’s permanent bans for rule-breaking accounts should have instead been temporary removals, so as not to suppress their use of the site long-term.

Meanwhile his plans for Twitter are incoherent, and it looks that he may have to use large portion of his share of Tesla shares will be security for his purchase of Twitter, which is tanking Tesla stock.

He figures that he can make the already-profitable-but-not-hugely-so Twitter a powerhouse by charging for the “Hellsite” for corporate and media users, and adding the premium feature of an edit button. (OK, I would like an edit button, but still.)

It won’t work, for the same reasons that Truth Social is a dud. (see above)

Ignoring the ideological stuff, and his promise to make the workplace hell for his future employees, we have this:

Elon Musk has never been accused of dreaming small. He has reinvented at least two industries with Tesla, his electronic vehicle company, and SpaceX, the rocket company — and now his ambitions are carrying over to his $44 billion acquisition of Twitter.

Mr. Musk, the world’s richest man, has presented a pitch deck to investors in recent days outlining his grand — some might say incredible — plans for Twitter and its financial targets. The New York Times obtained the presentation. Here’s a peek into what Mr. Musk sees for the social media service in the years ahead.

In his pitch deck, Mr. Musk claimed he would increase Twitter’s annual revenue to $26.4 billion by 2028, up from $5 billion last year.

Under Mr. Musk, advertising would fall to 45 percent of total revenue, down from around 90 percent in 2020. In 2028, advertising would generate $12 billion in revenue and subscriptions nearly $10 billion, according to the document. Other revenue would come from businesses such as data licensing.

So, he’s saying that advertising revenue will fall from $4.5 billion now (90% of $5 billion) to $11.8 billion (45% of $26.4 billion).

So he is saying that he expects advertising revenue to increase by 2⅝ times over the next 6 years.

Ummm, how?

He also expects to generate $10 billion from subscriptions because ……… Businesses will want to pay him money? Given that (as Cory Doctorow notes) social media is already robbing news organizations blind, (Money, not content) I do not thing that media organizations will continue to push their reporters to tweet if it costs them money.

As to the data licensing. the EU has already expressed concerns, both about inflammatory content and user privacy protections, this one seems a bit less likely.

Twitter would bring in $15 million from a payments business in 2023, according to the document, which would grow to about $1.3 billion by 2028. The company’s payments business today, which includes tipping and shopping, is negligible. There has been speculation that Mr. Musk may introduce payment abilities to Twitter given that he helped popularize PayPal, the digital payments service.

The environment is much less friendly to such an endeavor than it was when he founded X.com (later merged and became PayPal), because regulators are now far less tolerant of the regulatory arbitrage (lawbreaking) used by early payment services to get a competitive leg up on banks.

You can’t run these operations under Scorsese rules (Goodfellas) any more.

He also anticipates a 30% increase in revenue per user, and a 330% increase in the total number of users, because ……… I dunno, freedum?

Also, he’s planning a product called “X”, which will be amazing.

Sounds a lot like “Ginger” the revolutionary invention from Dean Kamen that turned out to be the Segway scooter, best known as Kevin James ride in Paul Blart Mall Cop.

I do not understand why people keep buying his sh%$.

More evidence of a prion based brain disease, is being spread among the hyper-wealthy, I guess. (Not that there is anything wrong about that)



Matthew G. Saroff

Husband, father, pinko, slave to cats