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Elon Musk, CEO and CTO of SpaceX, listens to a question from the media in front of the SpaceX Dragon V2 spaceship at the headquarters on Thursday, May 29, 2014, in Hawthorne, Calif. SpaceX, which has flown unmanned cargo capsules to the International Space Station, unveiled the new spacecraft Thursday designed to ferry astronauts to low-Earth orbit. )
AP Photo/Jae C. Hong
Evil genius?
QUOTE-UNQUOTE

Is Elon Musk the world’s most demanding boss?

By John McDuling

Elon Musk took to Twitter this morning to deny widespread reports (taken from excerpts of a new book about him) that he had scolded an employee who skipped a meeting to attend the birth of his child.

Musk also denied he’s ever compared himself to a Samurai. So there’s that.

But Musk, who was responding specifically to this summary in the Washington Post, hasn’t disputed any other quotes from the book that are making the rounds today—none of which are quite as distressing as the supposed birth-over-meeting dustup, but suggest nonetheless that he is a maniacally demanding boss and utter workaholic. They include such gems as:

That’s my lesson for taking a vacation: vacation will kill you.”

Musk’s disdain for vacation time is well documented. “The idea of lying on the beach…sounds like the worst,” he has also been quoted as saying.

“I would tell those people they will get to see their families a lot when we go bankrupt.”

This comment was reportedly made in response to an employee complaint about long work hours.

“We’ve grown [expletive] soft.”

Musk apparently made this comment when not enough people turned up for work on a Saturday.

Perhaps it’s not that surprising that work-life balance is not a huge priority for someone trying to colonize Mars or change the way the world consumes energy. Unlike some other executives running companies in Silicon Valley, at least he’s honest about it.