Elon Musk has threatened to pull Tesla out of California due to restrictions surrounding the pandemic virus outbreak in the United States. Texas or Nevada are potential relocation destinations.
California Governor Gavin Newsom recently updated restrictions to exclude manufacturing. Elon Musk, of course, was happy to hear this news. Tesla can now get back to full operations. The problem is that Newsom gave leeway to individual municipalities (counties and cities) when it comes to re-opening. Tesla is located in Fremont, California. Surrounding Alameda County decided to keep manufacturing shut down until the end of May.
This deals a massive blow to Tesla. No manufacturing can happen at Tesla until June if the restriction is kept. If manufacturing initially shut down in March, extending the shutdown to June would make nearly 2.5 months. And there is no guarantee that the shutdown is going to be lifted in June.
Cities, counties, and even some states around the nation have declared no re-opening until a virus remedy is prepared and safe. Experts around the world say the virus pandemic may last for another two years. Are any nations on planet Earth prepared to stay shut down, or at least… semi-shutdown, for another two years? That seems doubtful, at best.
The eccentric billionaire automaker has been vocal about re-opening the nation. Elon, like many Americans, is having doubts about the virus. He does not appear to be some sort of “right-wing conspiracy theorist” (whatever that means) but he does have doubts. Is the virus as bad as they say? How long can a nation remain unproductive without disastrous consequences?
The current restrictions on the United States are unsustainable. Unemployment is projected to hit 20% sooner rather than later. That is a number not seen since the Great Depression. Although the current economic “pause” is not equivalent to the Great Depression, it’s hard to tell the difference with the people on the ground.
Elon and his company, Tesla, may have some quirky issues. But one thing is for certain, Elon Musk is correct to question the status quo as it relates to the virus.