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FILE PHOTO: FILE PHOTO: Tesla CEO and X owner Elon Musk attends the VivaTech conference in Paris
FILE PHOTO: FILE PHOTO: Elon Musk, Chief Executive Officer of SpaceX and Tesla and owner of X, formerly known as Twitter, gestures as he attends the Viva Technology conference dedicated to innovation and startups at the Porte de Versailles exhibition centre in Paris, France, June 16, 2023. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes/File Photo Image: Reuters/Gonzalo Fuentes
world

Musk targets Australian senator, gun laws in deepening dispute over X stabbing content

33 Comments
By Byron Kaye

Elon Musk said an Australian senator should be jailed and suggested the country's gun laws were meant to stop resistance against its "fascist government", escalating his battle over a court order to remove video posts of a bishop being stabbed.

After Australia's federal court told Musk's platform X to temporarily stop showing video of a knife attack on an Assyrian bishop during a church service in Sydney a week earlier, Musk accused the country's leaders of trying to censor the internet, prompting an outpouring of condemnation from lawmakers.

One senator, Jacqui Lambie, deleted her X account to protest publication of the footage and called for other politicians to do the same, saying Musk had "no social conscience or conscience whatsoever". She added Musk should be jailed.

When an unnamed X user posted overnight that it was Lambie who "should be in jail for censoring free speech on X", Musk replied to his 181 million followers, "Absolutely. She is an enemy of the people of Australia".

A representative for Lambie, an independent senator for the small island state of Tasmania, declined to comment.

Targeting individuals is a regular strategy of Musk, the world's third-wealthiest person, as he goes after governments which try to exert more oversight of content on social media.

In Brazil, Musk has been singling out a judge who told X to block some accounts as part of an investigation into digital militias, calling him a "dictator".

Musk widened his attacks on Australia, including promoting a post from an unnamed but verified X user which said the country "disarmed all of their citizens in 1996 so that they cannot resist their fascist government", a reference to a gun buy-back and registration scheme after the country's worst mass shooting.

Musk responded with an exclamation mark.

Another anonymous, verified X account posted a screenshot of a text message purporting to be from a "friend living in Sydney", saying "Evil has penetrated Australia's government hard". "Whoa!" Musk replied.

Home Affairs Minster Clare O'Neill said social media companies created "civil division, social unrest ... and we're not seeing a skerrick of responsibility taken".

"Instead, we're seeing megalomaniacs like Elon Musk going to court to fight for the right to show alleged terrorist content on his platform," she added.

Police have charged a 16-year-old with a terrorism offence in the church attack. Videos online showed the youth, restrained by the congregation, shouting at the bishop for insulting Islam.

X and Musk have said they complied with the temporary takedown order by blocking it for Australians, but that they would appeal it. The footage remained visible on X in Australia on Wednesday.

At a hearing to decide whether the order should be permanent, a lawyer for regulator the e-Safety Commissioner said X appeared to have failed to comply with the temporary order but "the consequences of any non-compliance are for another day".

A lawyer for X said the global takedown order involved "exorbitant jurisdiction", and added that the company had received a statement from the Assyrian bishop attacked in the footage who wanted the video to remain online.

The federal court judge, Geoffrey Kennett, extended the temporary takedown order until another hearing on May 10.

© Thomson Reuters 2024.

©2024 GPlusMedia Inc.

33 Comments

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Not your country, Elon. Stuff like this is why Americans get a bad rap.

9 ( +16 / -7 )

Elon Musk said an Australian senator should be jailed and suggested the country's gun laws were meant to stop resistance against its "fascist government",

So, let the Aussies have floods of guns freely available - just like in Musks homes of South Africa and The US. Because gun crime is going so well there, eh wig boy?

Still waiting for Musk to tweet any criticism of the Chinese Communist Party and their leaders, control of guns, censorship etc.

10 ( +13 / -3 )

Problem is here folks, Musk is pretty much right on this one. No matter how much of the kitchen sink of trigger words ( guns, Pauline Hanson really? ) you can throw into one article the sheer fact of the matter is Aussies don’t want , nor need censorship by any arrogant, holier than thou class of do gooding narcissists. It’s a slippery slope. We can deal with reality despite your need to protect us. Thanks.

It really is that simple.

We all know it in our bones by now, the road to hell is paved with good intentions.

-8 ( +5 / -13 )

Not your country, Elon. Stuff like this is why Americans get a bad rap.

This is absolutely mountains out of molehills stuff. That bad rap has more serious causes than this.

One senator, Jacqui Lambie, deleted her X account on Tuesday to protest publication of the footage and called for other politicians to do the same, saying Musk had "no social conscience or conscience whatsoever". She added Musk should be jailed.

Well, how to say this delicately...Lambie is widely known as being a rude idiot.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

That bad rap has more serious causes than this.

Same root cause, though - Americans thinking they know what is best for others.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

That bad rap has more serious causes than this.

Same root cause, though - Americans thinking they know what is best for others.

True, fair enough.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

And the history repeats itself.

This guy was praised and loved by everyone just a few years ago.

Until he got in the way of the West hating forces.

He's the only one with guts to hightlight what's been happening in South Africa since forever.

I really want him speaking in the next American Renaissance Conference.

-10 ( +5 / -15 )

Aussies think "Seppos" (Americans) are crazy with their gun laws. The Aussies are no more likely to change their current gun laws than the Americans are.

This guy was praised and loved by everyone just a few years ago.

And then a few years ago, he took a hard right turn. There is a direct correlation between these two incidents.

4 ( +10 / -6 )

Not his country, but it is his company.

Same as Japanese telling Google to stop providing links.

Same as calling Apple store and Google Play a monopoly.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Glad I sold most of my TESLA shares recently. Musk is becoming a worry.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Still waiting for Musk to tweet any criticism of the Chinese Communist Party and their leaders, control of guns, censorship etc.

Exactly! He has a habit of speaking his "non-biased mind" but has yet to say anything negative about the Communist party.

When an unnamed X user posted overnight that it was Lambie who "should be in jail for censoring free speech on X", Musk replied to his 181 million followers, "Absolutely. She is an enemy of the people of Australia".

I'm pretty sure in some way this is illegal, Musk is a dangerous loony bird that uses real life events as his form of amusement.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

Ricky Kaminski13

Problem is here folks, Musk is pretty much right on this one. 

No. Completely wrong again Ricky.

The one useful word in your post was narcissist, but unfortunately you weren't able to draw the simple line in pencil between the two big words in the story book: "Musk" and (clueless) "narcissist"

7 ( +10 / -3 )

Musk has spent his whole life desperately searching for fools that didn't see him as a spoilt weirdo. I guess he's found them.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Same root cause, though - Americans thinking they know what is best for others.

To clarify for people who may not know but Musk isn't American he was born in South Africa but because of his right wing influence he sounds similar to certain people in politics that turn a blind eye to specific issues, people, and morals.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Ricky Kaminski13Today  12:44 pm JST

Problem is here folks, Musk is pretty much right on this one. No matter how much of the kitchen sink of trigger words ( guns, Pauline Hanson really? ) you can throw into one article the sheer fact of the matter is Aussies don’t want , nor need censorship by any arrogant, holier than thou class of do gooding narcissists. It’s a slippery slope. We can deal with reality despite your need to protect us. Thanks.

Any time a mainstream opinion piece masquerading as a news article whacks "far right [politician's name]" into an article, it's safe to dismiss it as butcher's floor sweepings. Pauline Hanson is completely correct on this matter.

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

Chairman Rexton

Ricky Kaminski13Today  12:44 pm JST

Problem is here folks, Musk is pretty much right on this one. No matter how much of the kitchen sink of trigger words ( guns, Pauline Hanson really? ) you can throw into one article the sheer fact of the matter is Aussies don’t want , nor need censorship by any arrogant, holier than thou class of do gooding narcissists. It’s a slippery slope. We can deal with reality despite your need to protect us. Thanks.

Any time a mainstream opinion piece masquerading as a news article whacks "far right [politician's name]" into an article, it's safe to dismiss it as butcher's floor sweepings. Pauline Hanson is completely correct on this matter.

Pauline Hanson is not mentioned in this article. What are you talking about?

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Musk is correct.

-7 ( +3 / -10 )

Blackstar, here's an excerpt from earlier version of the article that's since been changed by Reuters:

Police have charged a 16-year-old with a terrorism offence in the attack on Assyrian bishop Mar Mari Emmanuel. Videos online showed the attacker, restrained by the congregation, shouting at the bishop for insulting Islam.

Far right Senator Pauline Hanson supported Musk, saying the takedown order was the centre-left Labor government's "convenient excuse to increase their power to control what truths, ideas, information, and opinions you are able to share".

X and Musk have said they had complied with the temporary takedown order but would appeal it. The footage remained visible on X in Australia on Wednesday.

https://www.tbsnews.net/world/musk-targets-australian-senator-gun-laws-deepening-dispute-over-x-stabbing-content-835151

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

For a businessman who wants folks to buy his cars, Musk sure does his best to insult people and turn prospective customers off...

Still can't figure out why MAGA-world loves a guy that builds cars that Trump said are "hoaxes" and made in China with the support of the CCP...

5 ( +9 / -4 )

Musk replied to his 181 million followers, "Absolutely. She is an enemy of the people of Australia".

I'm pretty sure in some way this is illegal.

Why, what's "illegal " about it?

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

""Home Affairs Minster Clare O'Neill said social media companies created "civil division, social unrest ... and we're not seeing a skerrick of responsibility taken".""

Wrong Sir,

Social Media has improved the lives of millions across the globe, Social Media brought Tyrants and Dictators to their knees and ended the grip on power of so many like them.

One can't imagine life without it anymore, people are operating business, running factories, building a future for their kids and familied using it.

Only those who hate Freedom and Prosperity to the disadvantaged will stand in the face of Social Media and the internet.

-7 ( +3 / -10 )

Go Musk Go.

-8 ( +2 / -10 )

I really want him speaking in the next American Renaissance Conference.

The American Renaissance Conference: A conference for neo-nazis, white supremacists, and the alt-right to gather. Nice.

https://www.splcenter.org/fighting-hate/extremist-files/group/american-renaissance

Musk certainly fit right in.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Elon Musk said an Australian senator should be jailed and suggested the country's gun laws were meant to stop resistance against its "fascist government",

A statement providing clear proof Musk knows absolutely nothing about Australia or its people. He is turning into a bit of a loser nutcase in his old age. Still very rich which enables his stupid comments to gain traction with other foolish people around the globe.

Australia does not have a "fascist government" and thanks to our open and fair elections, we quickly dump governments we dont like or that do not preform to the requirements of the majority.

For every good thing Musk does, and he has done a few, he seems to make a stuff up as well. As he ages the numbers dont seem to be in his favor any more.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Musk wants to be liked by others. His weakness and motivation is his ego. He falsely demands that he is the smartest person in the room thinking he should be loved and respected. He is neither.

Tesla layoffs: Company plans to cut nearly 2,700 workers at Austin, Texas factory

https://www.yahoo.com/finance/news/tesla-layoffs-company-plans-cut-175432021.html

He is trying to cash out from TESLA to move on to the next scam. TESLA is just another car company and not a tech company.

Like Trump, whenever some bad news comes out, they try to counter it with some distracting media attention. All those layoffs are bad for the stock

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Many Aussies and others agree with Musk. The Australian Govt has become a Big Brother with a Thought Police mindset - regardless of the political stripe. This is the result of 80 years of obsequiousness in lapdog foreign policy, particularly amplified in the last two decades when it gained a power-drunk addiction with the abuses of the "war on terrorism", which it is still obsessed with using like a bad hangover. This is from a government which is strangely silent on the legal torturing/killing of publisher Julian Assange.

Talk about having it all back-to-front.

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

@Woody Lee

Social Media has improved the lives of millions across the globe, Social Media brought Tyrants and Dictators to their knees and ended the grip on power of so many like them.

I couldn't disagree more! How naive you are. Are Xi and Putin on their knees?

As someone who spent half his life in the pre-Internet era and has lived the second half with it (a perspective you probably don't have), I yearn for (an impossible) return to the days when the loudest voices on important issues were those who were most qualified to comment, most knowledgeable, experienced, directly involved etc.

Nowadays, the voice of experts is drowned out by the daily rants of idiots on social media, who in turn influence the even more severely mentally-challenged in droves. The result: a cacophony of garbage passed on and on by nut jobs with varying degrees of mental illness, which is seriously paralyzing the ability of democracies to function as healthily as they should.

Meanwhile, authoritarian states such as China and Russia, which are efficiently focused on limiting the access of their citizens to only "information" that they approve of, are benefiting from all this, laughing their heads off while the West circles the drain hole to the tune of "Pizzagate", "democracies are fascist states unless they're primitive anti-vaxx regimes", and countless other nonsense of the type.

Trump and Musk are just two of the most obvious toxic symptoms of this madness of self-love, lust for power and attention, no matter the scale of the damage they do to the societies that raised them.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

@JJE makes my point.

If you were on drugs you might think his post was interesting, but on closer inspection it's semi-literate nonsense, equating Assange's leaks of government secrets related to international policy to the current topic-the government's desire to keep domestic social/religious tensions from boiling over.

We know the stabbings happened. What do we gain by viewing them?? Answer: Nothing.

What do we lose by publishing the footage? Answer: We encourage those most personally affected by the violence to potentially be violent/vindictive in response.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Update: In Federal Court in Australia where this issue is being heard, lawyers for X have told the Federal Court they have a statement from Bishop Mar Mari Emmanuel, saying he wants footage of the attack to remain online, and submitted a signed affidavit to that effect.

The victim is supporting Musk is this matter (and vice versa). People fail to learn Musk always does his homework and comes prepared (unlike the Aust Govt, which is notorious for ineptness).

Let's see the Musk haters turn their fire on the victim. A bit of victim blaming could be in order.

-9 ( +2 / -11 )

Many Aussies and others agree with Musk.

Not a majority, or anywhere close to a majority do. What does "many" even mean?

Only the lowlife types attending events such as the American Renaissance conference agree.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

@JJE

A bit of victim blaming could be in order.

You accidentally said something that made sense. Yes, victim blaming is in order. Emmanuel shamelessly baited the Muslim community over an extended period of time, insulting Islam time and again. He was disowned by the most senior ranks of his church in Ethiopia for his outlandish comments/behaviour. Yes, he got what he was asking for!

And yes, of course he wants the footage to remain online. He wants anti-Muslim violence to erupt. That's what he's been about for some time. Ideally, once he recovers from his wounds he should do an extended period in jail. It won't happen, unfortunately.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

When an unnamed X user posted overnight that it was Lambie who "should be in jail for censoring free speech on X", Musk replied to his 181 million followers, "Absolutely. She is an enemy of the people of Australia".

Behaving like the CPC?

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

Behaving like the CPC?

Behaving like the jerk off he is.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

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