Above the Line Below the Line

by | Dec 18, 2023

Last week, Elon Musk said, go F yourself to a bunch of advertisers.

That’s not what this post is about, because that’s been sensationalized already, and I don’t think it’s particularly interesting.

I’m interested in what he said right after that. He said that if X fails, it will have been the fault of his advertisers.

That those companies will be to blame for the end of the business, and that he will be documenting it every step of the way.

That is the most victim blaming mentality I have ever seen. If you are familiar with the OZ principle, you know about a simple framework we use to talk about above the line and below the line Thinking.

Above the line thinking is taking accountability. And below the line thinking is blaming other people, playing the victim, pointing the finger, saying, that’s not my job, that’s not my fault.

And that’s what Elon is doing. He’s basically absolving himself of any responsibility in the outcomes of X.

He’s saying it’s not his fault. It would’ve been his advertisers that it’s not his leadership, it’s not his comments, it’s not his decision making that is to blame for the demise of his company.

It is in fact Bob Iers, who’s probably spending 1% of his time thinking about Twitter and Elon Musk.

So what’s much more interesting to me than the fact that he was cursing on stage and speaking out against cancel culture is the fact that he is a below the line thinker and leader.

And I believe he really thinks that if X fails, it won’t have been his fault.

That’s not the kind of leader that I wanna look up to.