On Twitter, Elon Musk is at it again, this time criticizing the White House’s plan to impose a “billionaires’ tax” in the United States. Musk agreed with another tweeter, stating, “SpaceX & Tesla would have probably died” if a comparable tax scheme had been in place in 2008, as “both narrowly survived bankruptcy in 2008.”
Elon Musk May Have To Pay An Extra $50 Billion In Taxes
The White House’s “Billionaire Minimum Income Tax,” which is included in Biden’s fiscal budget proposal for 2023, proposes a 20% minimum tax on households worth more than $100 million in the United States. Importantly, the approach focuses on both unrealized and declared capital gains. According to calculations by University of California Berkeley economist Gabriel Zucman, if the current proposal becomes law, Musk will pay an additional $50 billion in taxes, while Jeff Bezos will pay an additional $35 billion.
Though Biden’s proposal emphasizes this additional tax revenue as a source of revenue for large-scale social spending programs, American Enterprise Institute fellow James Pethokoukis, who wrote a blog on the subject, believes the benefits are outweighed by the harm it can cause businesses and the economic consequences. Musk’s reply was in response to a blog article by Pethokoukis, which explains University of Chicago economist Steven Kaplan’s claim that both SpaceX and Tesla would have collapsed in 2008 if Elon Musk had to pay $60 million billionaires’ tax.
Elon Musk has a personal net worth of about $300 billion at the time of writing. According to a recent analysis by Tipalti Approve, Elon Musk, the CEO of SpaceX and Tesla, is on track to become the world’s first trillionaire by 2024. Things didn’t always go as planned. Musk was trying to keep Tesla and SpaceX afloat in 2008, after investing the entire $180 million profit from the sale of PayPal into the two companies. Musk claims that he paid “more taxes than any other American” last year.
While Musk is the world’s richest man, he isn’t the only billionaire in the United States, and not every billionaire is out to save the world by mobilizing the electric vehicle sector and transforming humans into multi-planetary beings.
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Even among supporters of Biden’s proposal, a disproportionate amount of attention is paid to Musk. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, a vocal opponent of SpaceX’s CEO, stated this week in an interview with CNBC, “I’m glad to see success, but let’s not forget that Elon Musk didn’t achieve it on his own. He was able to secure significant funding from the government, taxpayers, public school instructors, and minimum wage workers who had been paying their taxes all along in order to get the business up and operating and see it through difficult times.”
During a Twitter exchange with Warren last year, Musk reacted by stating that he was on track to pay more than $11 billion in taxes, which he said was “more than any other American.”