As people compare the character of Meryl Streep in Don’t Look Up (Adam McKay, 2021) with a US president who used to deny scientific evidence and with a certain Spanish regional president known for doing absolutely nothing to combat the coronavirus crisis, the character that interests me the most is that of a multimillionaire technological businessman. that gives life Mark Rylance.
Although they look more like Apple’s leaders, Tim Cook Y Steve Jobs, his rhetoric about the power of technology to solve humanity’s problems is more in line with the speech of the Tesla, SpaceX and Neuralink businessman, Elon Musk, chosen as the magazine’s Person of the Year Time.
Continuing with the parallels with the film, the rejection generated by the character of Rylance is at the height of the criticism that the medium received for choosing Musk. In addition to his well-known haughtiness, his eccentricities and his own tantrums of a child under 10 years old, his companies have touched bankruptcy on several occasions and have faced legal problems of all kinds, from labor exploitation to unfair competition.
However, unlike other recognitions focused exclusively on the positive, such as the Nobel, Time warns that his is directed to who, “for better or for worse … has been the one that has most influenced the events of the year”, something that we seemed to have forgotten after he elected the climate activist in 2019 Greta Thunberg and, in 2017, to the leaders of the movement Me Too.
But, since their recognition has also gone to guys of the ilk of Hitler Y Stalin, Musk’s selection shouldn’t surprise us so much. In fact, if there is anyone on Earth minimally capable of defending us from a planet-destroying asteroid like the one in Don’t Look Up that is undoubtedly the founder of SpaceX.
The rejection generated by the character of Rylance is at the height of the criticism that the media received for choosing Musk
In addition to revolutionizing the space industry from head to toe with its reusable, low-cost rockets with enormous payload capacities, just over a month ago, one of them was launched to carry out the first attempt in the history of humanity from deflecting the trajectory of an asteroid, the DART mission.
But this is not the only spatial feat with which we could compare Musk to the character of Rylance. As in the post-credits scene of the film (alert spoiler), the billionaire’s main space ambition is to colonize Mars and turn humanity into a multiplanetary species.
It is a target of such caliber that you laugh at the Metaverse of Marck Zuckerberg, who, by the way, was also voted Person of the Year by Time in 2010. But again, there are many differences between the impact of one and the other, as the astronaut made clear Buzz Aldrin in one of his most famous quotes: “You promised me colonies on Mars, but instead I have Facebook.”
The second man to step on the Moon made it clear what it means to contribute to the world and what it doesn’t. And while Musk still has a lot of work ahead of him to create a human settlement on the red planet, he also had it when he decided to embark on the space business. In fact, part of its success in this sector is based on a decision that many initially called crazy: the grouping of engines.
How it counts TimeBefore taking an interest in the space industry, the prevailing opinion was that many engines should not be put together in a single spacecraft, since the high number of moving parts increased the risks of failure. And, of course, no one had even raised the possibility that a rocket could be reused.
However, after countless criticisms and launches that ended up exploding and burning, its latest rocket model, the Falcon Heavy, made up of three groups of nine engines in total, has already been successfully shipped and returned to Earth on several occasions.
But Musk’s space audacity isn’t the only one that has made him Person of the Year. In October, the stock market valuation of its electric car company, Tesla, topped $ 1 billion for the first time, putting it ahead of bigger, but also more boring, competitors like Toyota.
Of course, Tesla has also been embroiled in countless crises And, in its early days, it was ruthlessly attacked by those who claimed that Musk would never be able to make such a company profitable. However, her vision for the future, her financial affairs and her legion of fans have managed to make her the sixth unicorn in American history.
And, more importantly, Tesla has emerged as the spearhead of the industry, as there is no longer a self-respecting car company that is not working on its own line of electric cars and its own autonomous driving systems.
So, if after this string of feats you still think that Musk did not deserve to be the Person of the Year for 2021, perhaps you are the one who most closely resembles the characters in the film who do not want to see reality despite having it in front of their nose. Musk has been looking up all his life, and I am looking forward to seeing what wonders he offers us thanks to his eyes always on the future.
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‘Don’t look up’ or the year of Elon Musk