Published on November 12th, 2018 | by Zachary Shahan0
November 12th, 2018 by Zachary Shahan
Editor’s note: For many moons and months, TeslaMondo was perhaps my favorite thing on the internet. It is a blog that offers insightful and hilarious commentary on Tesla. Hold on, let me rephrase that — it offers tremendously insightful and insanely hilarious commentary on Tesla. Alas, for more than one year, the person* behind TeslaMondo stepped deeper into the shadows and TeslaMondo went silent. (*No, that person isn’t me, despite what some people have claimed and how much I wish that were the case, just as certain Tesla-enthusiast forum members with a preference for facts and proper journalism aren’t Elon Musk or his staff — a ridiculous topic I’m not going to get into beyond this short aside.)
I was sad. Would TeslaMondo ever return? Did the writer leave the stock and move onto other things? Did he get bored of blogging about Tesla and leave his captive readership distraught, lonely, and questioning the meaning of life, humor, and blogging? (For the record, I do have proof the writer is male and am not assuming that out of totally unwoke sexism.)
All of a sudden, strolling through my aggregated news feeds on Feedly, I saw a new piece from Tesla Mondo last week! How thrilled I was. Below is that article, original TeslaMondo graphics and all. — Zach
The last post, a rhapsody about Tesla cranking out the $35,000 car, turned out to be premature. The company wasn’t financially ready for that car yet. More than a year later, the “affordable Tesla” is finally edging toward the on-deck circle.
Stuck with a post about an imminent car that wasn’t imminent, TeslaMondo had two choices:
- Modify or delete the post to reflect reality, and then continue writing more articles as if no misstep had happened. That would have been the easy route. Too easy.
- Freeze the site and wait for reality to catch up to the post. Only an utter shmegegge would entertain that option. Perfect!
So TeslaMondo has been quietly observing the game from the bleachers this whole time, watching as Tesla’s dirty opponents, their bookies, their beholden cheering squads, and a posse of crooked referees try to disallow a Team Tesla victory in Model 3 and profitability. The default metaphor is “moving the goalposts,” but that doesn’t capture the desperation of these nincompoops. They’ve installed a row of exact-change-only tollbooths at the goal line. And they’ve covered the end zone with a tarp that makes it look like more gridiron to conquer. So a Tesla touchdown, like, totally can’t happen.
- Model 3 backlog is swelling? Tesla has no supply.
- The backlog is shrinking? Tesla has no demand.
- Production hits 2,500/week? A fluke.
- Production hits 4,000/week? Another fluke.
- Tesla becomes profitable in 2018? Another fluke.
- And if this stuff isn’t a fluke? Then the company is doomed.
- Tesla is stealing customers from the Germans? Only until the Germans catch up.
- The Germans aren’t catching up? The Japanese are.
- The Japanese aren’t? The Americans are.
- The Americans aren’t? The Chinese are.
- The Chinese aren’t? The FBI is.
And so Tesla will never get a cheer even in victory, and even on home turf. The crowd is stacked. This is why Musk can employ dirty tactics, such as jolting the stock market to rattle short sellers, without looking like a bully. This isn’t a mere game. It’s a dirty theater of war with no rules of engagement, and everyone knows it.
Let’s check in on TeslaMondo’s cast of characters. It’s been a while.
Darth Dieter is stepping down as Daimler CEO next spring. He’s open to another duet with Tesla, like the plug-in Smart and Benz cars of yesteryear. But at this point, what could Tesla possibly gain from collaborating with anyone?
Sergio Marchionne, CEO of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, died this summer. While other Big Auto CEOs tried to belittle Tesla, Sergio gave credit to Elon Musk. He also begged everyone not to buy his compliance car, the electric Fiat 500. So he was honest, at least.
A couple years ago, Nissan chief Count Carlos surveyed the walls of his castle and laughed at the notion of a raid. “I know the media love to say we have a new superman coming here, and it’s going to make all of you look like dinosaurs,” Ghosn said. “But, frankly, the likelihood that this is going to happen in our industry, in my opinion, is very limited.” Musk would be the first to agree. Yet it’s happening.
Germany’s diesel weasel scandal culminated with Audi’s CEO going to jail. But nobody knows or cares. This is the car business. A rap sheet comes with the territory.
The climax of his multi-year Tesla Sux media tour came late September, when he said Tesla was headed for the graveyard. A month later, Tesla’s Q3 results proved it’s hardly moribund, while reinforcing the suspicion that Lutz and his old-school mindset are exactly that.
Speaking of moribund, here’s Faraday Future digging its own grave along with Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval, who somehow missed the ground with his shovel. He also missed the abundant clues that this company consisted of boring people who could never break into a padlocked industry like autos. It’s now common knowledge that a successful auto startup in the 21st century must be led by an insomniac, manic-depressive, verbally abusive, sociopathic, megalomaniacal, narcissistic, schizophrenic, substance-abusing, autistic savant who whips up brilliant products in between bouts of head-butting a wall and kicking a cat.
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