Musk Pledged $6B to Solve World Hunger But Gave It to His Own Foundation Instead

As an alternative of giving the cash to charity, Musk possible “donated” the cash for tax-dodging functions.

Just lately uncovered monetary paperwork reveal that final 12 months, as Elon Musk was taunting the United Nations over his option to withhold $6 billion that he mentioned he would donate to resolve world starvation, the right-wing billionaire gave the cash to a special supply: his personal basis.

Late final 12 months, Musk donated roughly $5.7 billion worth of Tesla shares, as many rich individuals do through donor-advised funds to avoid paying capital positive aspects and revenue taxes. The recipient of that donation was unknown till this week, when Bloomberg revealed that a tax filing shows that the donation went to the Musk Basis, “immediately making it one of many largest foundations within the U.S.,” as Bloomberg reported.

The donation got here as Musk was stirring up controversy on-line, arguing with Senators Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) over the fact that billionaires are severely under-taxed compared to most people.

Simply a few weeks earlier than that, Musk had pledged the cash to a different trigger. In late October, director of the United Nations World Food Program (WFP) David Beasley pointed out that billionaires like Musk might donate only a fraction of their wealth, which has skyrocketed throughout the pandemic, to handle world starvation.

In response, Musk tweeted in a reply to a deceptive tweet about Beasley’s comment that he would donate $6 billion — simply 2 % of his web price on the time — if the UN might show that the cash would clear up world starvation, ignoring that Beasley by no means talked about fixing world starvation altogether with that amount of cash.

“If WFP can describe on this Twitter thread precisely how $6B will clear up world starvation, I’ll promote Tesla inventory proper now and do it,” Musk mentioned.

The WFP took Musk up on his problem and issued a report just three days later detailing the way it might use the funds to feed 42 million of the individuals the world over who had been most prone to hunger for a 12 months. After all, the cash from Musk, who’s notorious for pledging to do good together with his cash and affect after which backing out, by no means materialized — not for the WFP, anyway.

As an alternative, the cash went to the Musk Basis, which seems to be arrange in a method that’s just like different foundations began by billionaires; basically, the sole purpose of those foundations is permitting the wealthy to dodge taxes whereas portray themselves as charitable.

Such foundations typically sit on giant quantities of cash whereas charities look ahead to donations to reach; certainly, regardless that the Musk Basis had about $9.4 billion in property by the tip of final 12 months, it gave solely $160 million to charities in 2021. Equally, the biggest basis within the U.S., the Invoice and Melinda Gates Basis — which is by no means innocent of tax-dodging schemes itself — had property price $55 billion on the finish of 2021 whereas distributing $6.2 billion in grants, in line with a basis spokesperson.

Across the similar time final 12 months, Musk sold billions of dollars worth of Tesla inventory. Whereas he posted a ballot on Twitter asking whether or not or not he ought to promote the inventory, pretending that he was merely listening to the general public, journalists and consultants have famous that he possible offered the inventory to assist meet billions of {dollars} of tax obligations that had the potential to extend if he put them off, or for other stock-related reasons that he possible in the end profited from.

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