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Tesla CEO Elon Musk tests positive and negative for COVID-19, casts doubts on seriousness of pandemic

Tesla CEO Elon Musk said that he tested both positive and negative for COVID-19 in a series of four tests yesterday.

The CEO, who has often made skeptical and inaccurate comments about the pandemic, used the occasion to again cast doubts on the seriousness of the coronavirus pandemic.

Musk said that he was experiencing the symptoms of a “typical cold” and he tested positive on a rapid COVID-19 antigen test from BD.

He took three subsequent tests and reported tht he tested both positive and negative:

Something extremely bogus is going on. Was tested for covid four times today. Two tests came back negative, two came back positive. Same machine, same test, same nurse. Rapid antigen test from BD.

In followup tweets, The CEO said that these mixed results could explain the spike in cases, and he added that he is getting different tests:

In another tweet, Musk insinuated that it’s a way to create more revenue from testing:

That’s a narrative that he has been pushing over the last few months after being wrong about the pandemic going away.

Back in March, he claimed that the trends showed there would be no new cases in the US by the end of April:

At this point, it’s not clear whether the CEO is quarantining himself, and whether other members of his team at Tesla or SpaceX tested positive.

Over the last week, the CEO was in Germany and Sweden, a jurisdiction Musk recently praised for its response to the pandemic even though its death count is 20x neighboring Norway and Finland.

via worldodometers

More recently his plane was spotted in Austin, Texas, where Tesla is currently building a factory, from Monday through Wednesday.

Then it went to Los Angeles and yesterday it landed in the Bay Area, where Tesla Fremont plant and Palo Alto HQ is located..

Electrek’s Take

First of all, I hope everyone is OK and being safe about the situation. If Elon does have COVID-19, hopefully, it is a mild case of it and he recovers quickly without any long-lasting side effects.

With this said, he really needs to stop casting doubts about the seriousness of the situation.

There’s nothing bogus about this situation. The FDA has warned of the possibility of false positives with antigen tests. This is not new information.

It is normal to get PCR testing (also known as polymerase chain reaction testing) if someone tested positive on an antigen test.

While it does affect the data, it can’t in itself explain the surge in cases many regions are seeing.

This is still a very real problem that is killing many people and sending many others to the hospital, often leaving survivors with long-lasting symptoms

I find it hard to believe that Elon can still be skeptical about this and feeding the conspiracy theorists, considering how this is a global issue. Is every single country in on it?

The ICU units overflowing in places like Saskatchewan and Oklahoma, is that the result of bogus tests?

I think people not taking it seriously and prominent and influential people casting doubts, like Elon has been doing since the beginning, is a big problem that is contributing to the spread, and as a big fan of his work, I am sad to see it.

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