The Washington Post’s Faiz Siddiqui published a report on Tuesday about how the demands on Musk’s time — including his travel schedule, personal life, and focus on SpaceX, his rocket company — were affecting Tesla, leading to criticism of his management of the business.
While reporting the story — which The Post said was based on interviews with a dozen current and former Tesla employees, investors, and analysts — the publication reached out to Musk by email and received a brief response.
“Give my regards to your puppet master,” Musk said.
Both Bezos and The Post have repeatedly said he has no influence on editorial decisions. But that hasn’t stopped critics from conflating the billionaire tech founder and the nearly 150-year-old publication, the most vocal among them former President Donald Trump. As president, Trump frequently targeted Bezos and The Post, tweeting that the paper spread “fake news” and served as Amazon’s “chief lobbyist.”
With this latest barb, Musk is adding fuel to a rivalry with Bezos that dates back to at least 2004. Over the past 15 years, Musk has leveled a string of criticisms at Bezos and his rocket company, Blue Origin. He’s called Bezos a copycat over some of his business ventures, described Amazon as a monopoly, and appeared to make some digs at Bezos’ age.
For his part, Bezos has repeatedly critiqued SpaceX and Musk’s goal of sending humans to Mars — Bezos has described the idea as “un-motivating.”
“Go live on the top of Mount Everest for a year first and see if you like it, because it’s a garden paradise compared to Mars,” Bezos said in 2019.