Robert F. Kennedy Jr. compares Elon Musk to patriots who died fighting in the American Revolution, blames anti-depressants for mass shootings

Robert F. Kennedy Jr.
Robert F. Kennedy Jr. speaks at the New York State Capitol, May 14, 2019, in Albany, New York.Hans Pennink/AP Photo
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  • Elon Musk hosted RFK Jr. in a bizarre Twitter Spaces conversation littered with falsehoods and conspiracy theories.

  • Kennedy compared Musk to patriots who died in the Revolutionary War.

  • He also claimed that "prior to the introduction of Prozac" there were no mass shootings in the US.

Robert F. Kennedy Jr. thanked Elon Musk for his service to the nation and compared him to the thousands of patriots who died fighting in the American Revolution today in a bizarre Twitter Spaces conversation littered with falsehoods and conspiracy theories.

"Thank you for your service to our country, Elon," Kennedy said. "We lost between 25,000 and 70,000 people during the Revolution who died to give us our Constitution. And those people also put their livelihoods on the line, they put their property on the line, they put their financial status and their social status on the line for principles. I've watched you do the same thing."

Kennedy, the son of former attorney general and liberal icon Robert F. Kennedy, announced last month that he intends to challenge President Joe Biden for the Democratic presidential nomination next year.

Musk, who is attempting to turn his flailing social media platform into a political launching pad for candidates who oppose the Biden Administration, hosted Kennedy for a two-hour-plus conversation designed to promote his candidacy. Unlike the disastrous Ron DeSantis campaign launch on Twitter last month, during which the platform repeatedly collapsed, today's conversation went relatively smoothly, garnering a manageable 64,000 listeners.

Which may be just as well for Kennedy's campaign, given the odd and occasionally incoherent policy positions he announced during the conversation. Kennedy finished heaping praise on his right-wing billionaire host with a backward compliment of sorts, framing Musk as a foreigner whose purchase of Twitter was more of a public-minded sacrifice than a wise financial move.

"What is it in your background that you think gave you such firm convictions," Kennedy asked Musk, "where you'd be willing to take this huge, massive, unspeakable economic hit on behalf of a principle for a country in which you weren't even born?" Musk, who is South African but has American citizenship, bought Twitter last year for $44 billion. A recent estimate puts the company's current value at $15 billion.

"Well," Musk replied after a long pause, "I should say I do very much consider myself an American."

After he was done thanking his host, Kennedy unleashed a string of seemingly off-the-cuff policy pronouncements in conversation with a gaggle of right-wing Twitter stars, including Tulse Gabbard, Balaji Srinivasan, and Michael Shellenberger. Most of them seemed unlikely to inspire much support in the Democratic electorate.

Kennedy repeated his opposition to U.S. support for Ukrainians — who, he said, are "almost equally" as victimized by American policies as they are by the Russian invasion.

Musk agreed that the deaths on both sides of the war in Ukraine should be laid at the feet of America: "We are sending the flower of Ukrainian youth and Russian youth to die in the trenches, and it's morally reprehensible," he said.

Gabbard said that the U.S. had turned Ukraine into a "slaughterhouse" and blamed the conflict on an "elitist cabal of war-mongers" who had seized control of the Democratic Party.

Those war-mongers, Kennedy warned, hadn't just taken control of the Democratic party: They were in control of the Deep State as well. He recalled a conversation with former CIA Director Mike Pompeo, in which the Trump ally told him, "The top layer of that agency is made up almost entirely of people who do not believe in the American institutions of democracy."

Kennedy also sought to portray Biden as seeking conflict with China, claiming that he has forbidden meetings with senior Chinese officials. (China's foreign minister met with the American ambassador to China last month.)

While there may be traction in the anti-war wing of the Democratic Party, some of Kennedy's other positions are unlikely to play well. He pronounced himself a "free-market absolutist," and announced a willingness to install metal detectors, bag screeners, and bans on sharp objects at schools rather than pursue gun control.

"If it comes down to protecting schools the way we protect our airlines," he said, "I will do that."

He also laid the blame for the massive increase in mass shootings not on guns, but on pharmaceutical companies for marketing antidepressants. "Prior to the introduction of Prozac we had almost none of these events in our country," he said.


Read the original article on Business Insider