Credit: CNBC

While it probably was never true, a lot of people used to see Elon Musk as an unsolvable enigma.

He’s since been revealed as just another petulant rich guy with big divorced dad energy who is mad at the world because everyone won’t just do whatever he wants. And he’s an antisemite and conspiracy nutjob.

It’s been a tough few weeks for Musk as he’s single-handily turned his $44 billion investment in X, formerly Twitter, into wads of wet toilet paper. After reports that advertiser campaigns were appearing on accounts featuring white supremacist and neo-Nazi content followed by Musk himself endorsing an antisemitic viewpoint, several companies announced they would be pausing their ad spending with the platform, including ESPN parent company Disney, Warner Bros. Discovery, and Fox Sports. Disney even briefly paused all posting on many of their brand accounts for one day. Musk then debased himself further by jumping on the QAnon Pizzagate conspiracy a good seven years after it was relevant. A PR trip to Israel to save face didn’t pan out the way he’d hoped either.

All of which brings us to Wednesday when Musk appeared at The New York Times’ DealBook Summit, a yearly conference featuring titans of the business, tech, and political worlds. The Tesla and SpaceX boss sat on stage with Andrew Ross Sorkin to discuss the state of his affairs and, for whatever it’s worth, he certainly didn’t pull punches.

After Musk attempted to clarify his antisemitic post (“a mistake”) and claimed that the Israel trip was unrelated, Sorkins started discussing the situation and how it may have impacted advertisers leaving the platform. Musk cut him off and made it pretty clear how he feels about it.

“Don’t advertise,” said Musk.

“You don’t want them to advertise?” asked Sorkin quizzically.

“No,” Musk reiterated. “If someone is gonna try to blackmail me with advertising, blackmail me with money, go f*** yourself.”

“Go. F***. Yourself,” he added as a stunned Sorkin attempted to figure out where to go next. “Is that clear? I hope it is.”

Musk then added, “Hey Bob, if you’re in the audience,” presumably in reference to Disney CEO Bob Iger, who was in attendance at the summit.

If Musk and X CEO Linda Yaccarino had any hopes of getting companies like Disney, Warner Bros. Discovery, IBM, and Apple to change their minds about spending money with their company, those are probably dead now. As Musk becomes more odious, he drags the sagging social media network down with him, making it less relevant and easier for companies looking to promote their wares to spend their money elsewhere.

The X owner seems to be aware of this, for what it’s worth. He went on to say that the current advertiser pause is likely to end the company, though he seems to have a funny idea about who is at fault.

“What this advertising boycott is going to do, it’s gonna kill the company,” Musk said. “The whole world will know that those advertisers killed the company. And we will document it in great detail.”

When Sorkin pushed back on Musk’s view that those companies would be blamed for the end of X, instead of him, he refused to see it that way.

“Let’s see how Earth responds to that,” said Musk as Sorkin seemed to lose the will to proceed any further on this line of questioning.

Just another day in which we’re all at the mercy of the most divorced man on the planet.

[CNBC, Alex Thompson]

About Sean Keeley

Along with writing for Awful Announcing and The Comeback, Sean is the Editorial Strategy Director for Comeback Media. Previously, he created the Syracuse blog Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician and wrote 'How To Grow An Orange: The Right Way to Brainwash Your Child Into Rooting for Syracuse.' He has also written non-Syracuse-related things for SB Nation, Curbed, and other outlets. He currently lives in Seattle where he is complaining about bagels. Send tips/comments/complaints to