'Don't Go to Mars': Bill Gates Shades Elon Musk's Plans to Spend Money on Mars Missions
The two billionaires have had a longstanding feud after Musk accused Gates of shorting Tesla stocks last spring.
Elon Musk and Bill Gates have never exactly been the best of friends, but now Gates is taking a jab at Musk's Mars aspirations in a new interview with the BBC.
Sitting with Amol Rajan, Gates talked about hot topics like artificial intelligence and its future potential to "pretty dramatically" transform the world, longstanding COVID conspiracy theories, and his divorce from now ex-wife Melinda French.
But one topic that piqued viewers' interest was the mention of Musk — and whether or not Gates foresees the SpaceX CEO becoming more involved with philanthropy later in his life.
Related: Bill Gates Surprisingly Praises Elon Musk Following Leaked Altercation: 'You Wouldn't Want to Underestimate Elon'
"At the end of the day I don't think he'll, other than going to Mars a few times, which might cost a little bit, I don't think he'll want to spend it on himself," Gates said, subtly digging at Musk's very publicized goal to have his space exploration company SpaceX send a crewed flight to Mars by 2030. "So yeah, someday I think he will join the rank of philanthropists using his ingenuity."
Rajan then asked Gates whether or not he thought Musk deciding to go to Mars (whether he was self-funding the mission or using funds from elsewhere) was a "good use of money" to which the billionaire stood firm in his opinion.
"Not in my view," Gates said before agreeing with Rajan's commentary that there are more pressing things to do on Earth first. "It's actually quite expensive to go to Mars. You can buy measles vaccines and save lives for $1,000 per life saved, and so it just kind of grounds you, as in, don't go to Mars."
Related: 'I Give a Lot More Money to Climate Change Than Elon Musk': Bill Gates and Elon Musk Reignite Feud
The dueling billionaires have duked it out several times before. In May 2022, Gates told a French journalist that he donates "a lot more money to climate change than Elon Musk or anyone else." The clip quickly went viral on social media and garnered a "Sigh" reply from Musk on Twitter.
Sigh— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 4, 2022
In April 2022, an unnamed source leaked text messages between the duo to the New York Times, which were then circulated on Twitter, in which Gates had asked Musk to combine efforts and funds with him in a philanthropic effort to help the fight against climate change.
Musk refused Gates' offer after accusing him of shorting Tesla stocks, telling the fellow billionaire that he could not take the offer seriously due to Gates' "massive short position against Tesla," which Musk claims is the "coy doing the most to solve climate change."
So apparently Bill Gates hit up @elonmusk to discuss "philanthropy on climate change" but Elon asked if he still had a half billion dollar short position on $TSLA.— Whole Mars Catalog (@WholeMarsBlog) April 22, 2022
Bill said he hasn't closed it out, so Elon told him to get lost. No idea if this is true lol pic.twitter.com/iuHkDG3bAd
As of Monday afternoon, Gates's net worth was an estimated $117 billion.
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