Eccentric billionaire Elon Musk is no stranger to outrageous remarks.
While already a public figure with legions of fanboys, 2023 was the year that Musk wouldn’t get off of your feed.
Whether it was his attempts at being an edgelord or his slow descent into conspiratorial madness, Musk made many outrageous posts, once known as tweets, this year.
If you can’t quite recall them all (be happy that’s the case), the Daily Dot has rounded up Musk’s most bonkers posts of 2023.
Musk pledges to investigate ‘ghosts’
In late January, popular podcaster Brett Weinstein complained that despite Musk’s takeover, his engagement on X had flatlined.
The logical explanation, according to Weinstein, was that figments of left-wing employees or “ghosts,” were lurking in the office and code and purposely sabotaging his account’s ability to get faces.
While much of the platform laughed at Weinstein’s assertion, Musk actually agreed to “investigate” the potential woke ghosts.
“Will investigate,” he wrote.
It’s unclear what ever came of the investigation or if Musk was able to locate and fire any of the pesky ghosts supposedly manipulating the algorithm.
Because like many of Musk’s words online, his follow-through frequently seems to be lacking.
Musk disses disabilities
In March, as supporters of the billionaire cheered his gutting of Twitter’s employee roster, Musk made the genius move of accusing a former employee of using a disability as an excuse to do less work.
It began when Haraldur Thorleifsson tweeted at Musk that he had been locked out of his work computer for more than a week. Despite contacting Human Resources and Musk over email, Thorleifsson said that he had never received a reply.
After responding to Thorleifsson to demand to know what he did at the company, Musk proceeded to bring up the ex-employee’s disability in response to a random user.
“The reality is that this guy (who is independently wealthy) did no actual work, claimed as his excuse that he had a disability that prevented him from typing, yet was simultaneously tweeting up a storm,” Musk said. “Can’t say I have a lot of respect for that.”
In a lengthy thread, Thorleifsson detailed his years-long struggle with muscular dystrophy, which causes, among countless other issues, severe cramping in his hands. Thorleifsson said that he was able to tweet on his phone as it only required the use of one finger.
“But as I told HR (I’m assuming that’s the confidential health information you are sharing) I can’t work as a hands on designer for the reasons outlined above,” he said to Musk. “I’m typing this on my phone btw. It’s easier because I only need to use one finger.”
Musk later admitted fault, apologized, and offered Thorleifsson a position back at Twitter.
Musk hypes ‘false flag’ following mass shooting
In May, Musk once again showcased his level-headed leadership abilities by helping push claims that a mass shooting in Texas may have been perpetrated by the government.
After a gunman shot and killed eight people at a suburban Dallas shopping mall that month, conspiracy theorists began spreading claims that the shooting was likely orchestrated after it was revealed that the shooter held far-right views.
Despite months worth of damning evidence found online, right-wing figures deemed the entire event “suspect” and argued that a “psy-op” to smear the right was underway. Instead of ignoring the ridiculous claims, Musk responded in agreement with the Redheaded Libertarian.
“This gets weirder by the moment,” he said.
Musk blames vaccines on Bronny James’ heart attack
In July, Musk opted to amplify a baseless and conspiratorial claim that NBA superstar LeBron James’ 18-year-old son suffered a cardiac arrest from the COVID-19 vaccine.
Despite countless studies showing the vaccine’s safety and that nearly all of the few complications occur within two weeks after a dose, Musk suggested that we must keep the shot on the table as the cause of James’ cardiac arrest.
“We cannot ascribe everything to the vaccine, but, by the same token, we cannot ascribe nothing,” Musk tweeted. “Myocarditis is a known side-effect. The only question is whether it is rare or common.”
The 18-year-old’s vaccination status was unknown. A Community Note was quickly placed on Musk’s tweet to note that “the risk of myocarditis is significantly higher after an actual COVID infection than with the vaccine.”
Interestingly enough, the Community Note was deleted shortly after. Musk never commented on the removal, which could have only been done by a Twitter employee.
Musk admits conspiracy pusher shared child sex material
What happens when one of X’s biggest spreaders of misinformation shares images of child exploitation? Musk admits they did it, then keeps them on the platform.
In July, the conspiracy theorist known as Dom Lucre was rightfully suspended after sharing an image from a child exploitation video.
But given the suspension happened rapidly, people were left wondering. Musk, though, was there to explain it.
“I’m told that this account was suspended for posting child exploitation pictures associated with the criminal conviction of an Australian man in the Philippines,” Musk admitted.
Was the conspiracy crowd upset at Lucre for spreading child abuse material? Not at all. Instead, they demanded his reinstatement.
Lucre was reinstated. After making his way back to the platform, Lucre told his followers that he never shared such an image despite evidence to the contrary.
Musk said he did, then said he’d be reinstated regardless.
“Only people on our CSE team have seen those pictures. For now, we will delete those posts and reinstate the account,” he wrote, ignoring that with Lucre’s 800,000 others surely saw it, too.
Musk claims he ‘may require surgery’ to get out of Zuckerberg cage match
In June, Musk challenged Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to a cage match after the tech titan launched a rival app to X, Threads.
Despite Zuckerberg training and competing in jiu-jitsu, Musk claimed that his size alone would secure him a victory. When Zuckerberg agreed to the fight, Musk said that the pair would grapple in Vegas in August.
Yet as the date grew closer, Musk, who had repeatedly called Zuckerberg a chicken, kept making excuses. Musk suddenly claimed that he might need unexpected neck surgery.
Zuckerberg eventually grew tired and stated, “Elon isn’t serious and it’s time to move on.”
Musk has continued to suggest that it was Zuckerberg who chickened out.
Musk suggests Cybertruck is bulletproof
Musk in October decided it was a good idea to shoot his Cybertruck with a Thompson machine gun.
The battery-powered vehicle was then paraded through Southern California as Musk boasted that his latest project was bulletproof.
“We emptied the entire drum magazine of a Tommy gun into the driver door Al Capone style,” Musk wrote. “No bullets penetrated into the passenger compartment.”
Of course, such a publicity stunt at best is arguably irresponsible. Those unfamiliar with firearms could attempt to recreate the feat, resulting in serious injuries.
The blog autoevolution summed up the entire issue quite nicely: “Above all, these thick panels provide no safety to occupants, especially if the shots hit vulnerable areas such as the columns or the windows. The overreliance induced by a false safety feeling is the real danger here—just like it is with people who think they have an autonomous Tesla.”
In other words, don’t trust Musk and try to test whether your Cybertruck’s door can withstand machine gun fire.
Musk dives into anti-Jewish rhetoric
In November, Musk thought it would be a good idea to weigh in on a debate surrounding prejudice against Jews.
After a user on X complained about others stating “Hitler was right” on the platform, @breakingbaht went on to state that “Jewish communities have been pushing the exact kind of dialectical hatred against whites.”
“I’m deeply disinterested in giving the tiniest shit now about western Jewish populations coming to the disturbing realization that those hordes of minorities that support flooding their country don’t exactly like them too much,” he wrote.
Musk seemingly felt it was his duty to reply by stating: “You have said the actual truth.”
Musk’s remark immediately sparked a backlash online, which led the billionaire to visit Israel in what many saw as a public relations stunt.
You’d think at that point Musk would learn to keep quiet. But 2023 wasn’t quite yet over.
Musk shares Pizzagate meme
Pizzagate was the conspiracy theory that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was involved in a child sex trafficking ring held in the basement of a pizza shop in Washington, D.C.
That pizza shop was eventually shot up by a crazed gunman who was looking to free children from the alleged basement, which didn’t actually exist.
Musk, who had fallen for a fake claim from a conspiracy theorist that a journalist arrested for child abuse material was the chief debunker of Pizzagate, decided to share a meme stating exactly that.
In reality, the journalist had nothing to do with Pizzagate. Musk eventually deleted his tweet as a result.
Every Musk tweet is shown
In February, just months following his acquisition of the platform, Musk began addressing a serious issue: His tweets weren’t reaching enough people.
Musk argued that something must be wrong with X. An engineer reportedly responded by telling Musk that he simply wasn’t as popular as he once was. Musk was said to have fired the engineer in response, according to the Platformer.
Shortly after, users noticed a stark difference on X: Musk was everywhere.
Few felt the apparent algorithm change was coincidental. Reporting from the Verge later claimed that Musk had ordered the algorithm alteration after becoming upset over a tweet from President Joe Biden that received more attention than his.
While this may not be a specific Musk tweet, it is undoubtedly the move that ushered us into the era of seeing his tweets much more often than we’d like.
And despite X hemorrhaging profits from advertisers fleeing the platform due to Musk’s erratic behavior, the billionaire just can’t seem to help himself. With 2024 on the horizon, Musk will almost certainly continue making strange and disturbing posts online.
To read more of the Daily Dot’s Best of 2023 stories, click here.