SECOND TAKE: FT'S LEX
THE LEX COLUMN: Elon Musk is online, off message
Tesla chief turns to the US constitution as he backs away from settlement with regulator
Give me liberty or give me censure from America’s securities regulator? Elon Musk aspires to be the Patrick Henry of the C-suite, it seems. Musk late on Monday responded to the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) previous move to find him in contempt. He denied allegations that he had violated the terms he had previously accepted about his conduct on social media. Musk is in hot water over a February tweet where he wrote that Tesla would produce 500,000 electric vehicles in 2019. That figure was not totally precise and required him to clarify it (of course on Twitter) a few hours later. Among his defences now are that his tweet was not “material” and that he has generally cleaned up his act on Twitter since last year’s firestorm over “funding secured”. Not content with straightforward responses to the SEC charges, Musk claims the SEC’s oversight infringes on his First Amendment rights to express himself freely. He goes as far as to cite James Madison. In October, Musk paid a...