Brain electrodes. NOTE this is not a picture from the actual experiment. Chris Hope, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Elon Musk Offers Chinese Censors his Vision of Clean Energy, Space Launch & Brain Computer Links

Essay by Eric Worrall

According to Breitbart, Elon Musk’s article was published in China Cyberspace, the magazine run the the repressive Chinese internet censorship and regulation agency.

Elon Musk’s article in China Cyberspace, exclusive digital version & translation

Yang Liu
Aug 14 1613

As previously announced by Pekingnology, this newsletter will offer you an exclusive digital version of Elon Musk’s essay in China Cyberspace, a monthly magazine run by the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC), the central agency for internet control and regulation.

Musk’s piece was carried in the fourth issue of the magazine, published in July, under the column “Global Vision”.

Believing in technology for a better future

Thank you for the invitation from China Cyberspace magazine. I am pleased to share with my Chinese friends some of my thoughts on the vision of technology and humanity.

As technology accelerates, it may one day surpass human understanding and control. Some are optimistic and some are pessimistic. But I believe that as long as we are not complacent and always maintain a sense of urgency, the future of humanity will be bright, driven by the power of technology. It is like a self-fulfilling prophecy: if humans want to make the future good, they should take action to make it good.

The world is on track for a sustainable energy transition, and humanity should continue to accelerate the process. The faster this transition is achieved, the less risk humanity poses to the environment and the more it will gain. When clean energy is available, carbon sequestration and desalination will be cheaper, climate change and water shortages will be solved, and when fossil fuels are out of the picture, the skies will be cleaner, the world will be quieter, the air will be fresher, and the future will be brighter.

Neuralink: Empowering the Disabled

Some of our Chinese friends may not be as familiar with Neuralink as with electric cars. These companies focus on developing computer-human brain fusion technologies, developing brain chips the size of coins, similar to wearable devices such as smartphones, except that they integrate more deeply with the user’s body—recording and stimulating brain activity through implants in the cerebral cortex.

pace exploration: the possibility of cross-planet habitats

Finally, my greatest hope is that humans create a self-sustaining city on Mars. Many people ask me why I want to explore outer space and turn humans into multi-planetary creatures. In the vast universe, human civilization is like a faint little candle, like a little shimmering light in the void. When the sun expands one day and the Earth is no longer habitable, we can fly to a new home in a spaceship. If humans can inhabit other planets, it means that they have passed one of the conditions of the great screening of the universe, then we will become interplanetary citizens, and human civilization will be able to continue.

Read more:

Elon Musk isn’t the first engineering genius to be on over friendly terms with a tyranny.

Gerald Bull was an engineering genius who revolutionised modern artillery. Artillery pieces designed by Bull defended Israel, South Africa and NATO, and proved very effective in regional conflicts.

But what Bull wanted more than anything was to revolutionise access to space – sound familiar Elon?

Bull had an idea for a space launch system he knew would work, based on his research into long range artillery.

The USA provided funding for a while, Project HARP, then the USA lost interest, even though Bull provided plentiful evidence he was on the right track.

In desperation, Gerald Bull turned to Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, the only person willing to put up money for further development. And thus was born Project Babylon, the notorious Iraqi Supergun.

Saddam of course cared nothing about cheap civilian access to space.

We’ll never know exactly what went wrong, but we know how Bull met his end, someone assassinated him outside his apartment in Brussels in 1990.

A lot of people have speculated Bull was killed by the Israeli intelligence agency Mossad. But there are other theories. The most colorful theory, advanced by author Frederick Forsyth in his fiction novel “The Fist of God“, is Bull was assassinated by Saddam Hussein’s agents, because Bull had finally figured out what Saddam wanted to do with Bull’s gun.

The point is, whatever Saddam wanted to do with the supergun had nothing to do with peace or the advancement of mankind. But Gerald Bull was blinded by his desire to help mankind, to make his breakthrough, and simply wasn’t careful enough about choosing his friends and partners.

Elon Musk, please consider the story of Gerald Bull, before you make your next move. I think you know in your heart what China would do with your mind link technology, and the other jewels you are dangling before them. And I think we know who the first victim would be, once the Chinese perfect their militarised version of your visions.

Update (EW): Scott Adams / Dilbert read my mind

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Gordon A. Dressler
August 17, 2022 2:25 pm

“I am pleased to share with my Chinese friends . . .”
— Elon Musk

In that simple statement is all you need to know about Musk.

His ego, selling his soul out to a nation with:
— despicable human rights abuses
— an oppressive, totalitarian government
— a nation engaged in active military and industrial espionage against the United States
— a nation engaged in active cyber warfare against the United States
— a nation that befriends, and actively funds, other nations hostile to the US, such as North Korea
— a nation actively destroying atolls and reefs to build military bases in the South China Sea
— a nation that claims “ownership” of the independent nation of Taiwan

Oh, wait, did I not mention that Musk has located on of his major Tesla production facilities in Red China (Shanghai)? . . . if not, how careless of me.

What? . . . you think that Musk is so stupid that he does not recognize that he is speaking to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) when he comments to China Cyberspace and when referring to them as “my Chinese friends”?

It bears repeating: just despicable.

Reply to  Gordon A. Dressler
August 17, 2022 4:38 pm

I hear you. That’s why when Trump said…
“One of the many great things about our just signed giant Trade Deal with China is that it will bring both the USA & China closer together in so many other ways. Terrific working with President Xi, a man who truly loves his country. Much more to come!”
And … “Our relationship with China has now probably never, ever been better,” I get on well with President Xi Jinping. “He’s for China, I’m for the U.S., but other than that, we love each other.”
… I lost all respect for him.

Last edited 1 month ago by Simon
Tom Abbott
Reply to  Simon
August 18, 2022 11:31 am

You don’t understand Trump.

Reply to  Tom Abbott
August 18, 2022 12:52 pm

Tom…. I’m just printing what he said. But I guess most here (Given China is not their favourite place) will be happy the US is entering in to a trade deal with Taiwan given it has sent China into a spin.

Reply to  Simon
August 18, 2022 1:58 pm

Presidents have to make nice with bad people.

Of course you never had any respect for Trump, so why the need for that extra little lie at the bottom.

Reply to  MarkW
August 18, 2022 2:57 pm

Presidents have to be diplomatic most of the time, I do get that. But that was not my point. It was… how is what Musk said different to what Trump said? Answer it is not. Both are sucking up to a nation that violates human rights. But one is a villain here and the other a messiah.

Reply to  MarkW
August 18, 2022 2:58 pm

And every now and then Trump would do something I thought was good. It’s just the stuff in between that I found hard to take.

Reply to  Gordon A. Dressler
August 17, 2022 4:45 pm

“…you think that Musk is so stupid that he does not recognize that he is speaking to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) when he comments to China Cyberspace and when referring to them as “my Chinese friends” You don’t understand Chinese speak. There is nothing to be gained by referring to them otherwise, whether he believes it or not.

Reply to  Eric Worrall
August 17, 2022 10:57 pm

Well, it’s unlikely anyone knows Gerald Bull story. But the gun wouldn’t work to increase access to Space.
I doubt anyone knows Musk story, but the Starship could increase access to space.
China is not going to win world dominance- even with Joe Biden being the US President.
It seems China is run on coal and China going to run out of coal.
There is not much more to talk about.

And it’s not like Musk could keep whatever he doing secret from China in terms brain implants.
It sort like Starship, details about Starship will not be openly given, but he can’t hide that he making the Starship- and people could try to copy it.
China of course will try get “trade secrets”. Soviets stole the idea of Space Shuttle and probably got very detail plans of it. And Spviets built Buran- but one can’t say it helped them, much:
Even CIA couldn’t keep secerts- and I don’t think Musk is CIA agent, so
where is the there, there.
Since Musk has huge car plant in China- how can not engage in direct dialogue with Chinese. And likely Chinese leadership would rather that Musk not say anything.
I don’t think it’s good idea to have car plant in China- but my reasons are not, because he must engage with Chinese. I rather Musk do that. than the idiot US State Dept doing that.

Reply to  gbaikie
August 17, 2022 11:26 pm

The Russian govt are paying Russian women 1 million roubles if women will have 10 children.
That is a secret the China leadership need to know about.
Musk has 8 children, and says world faces a serious problem of future under population.
China failing to address it’s problem with this, is one of major reasons, China will fail to even manage to keep it’s country together.

Reply to  gbaikie
August 17, 2022 11:42 pm

Or I have question, why are Chinese buying coal at $400 per ton and
US can mine coal at $20 per ton?

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  gbaikie
August 18, 2022 9:38 am

“It seems China is run on coal and China going to run out of coal.
There is not much more to talk about.”

Oh, I think that is debatable.

China can likely “run on coal” for more than the next 100 years . . . who can say what damage they will inflict upon the world over that time, and I’m not referring to the meme of CO2 emissions “creating” global warming.

During this time, there is NOTHING that prevents China from transitioning to a nuclear fission energy supply plan if they want to go there for energy independence long term. China certainly won’t be concerned over the attendant problem of processing/storage of radioactive waste produced by nuclear reactors.

Reply to  Gordon A. Dressler
August 18, 2022 10:44 pm

Nothing prevents China from using nuclear energy, yet they are continuing to buy coal at $400 per US ton.
4 billion tons, 1.6 trillion dollars of coal use and part of that is imported:
say around 300 million US tons of ocean coal cargo shipment or importing 1.2 billion dollars of this imported coal per year.

“China is rich in coal, which accounts for 95 percent of the country’s fossil fuel endowments. According to the Chinese Ministry of Land and Resources, China’s proven coal reserves of 170 billion tons correspond to 19 percent of the global total, ranking second in the world after the United States (figure 1*).”
*2011 AD
170 / 4 = 42.5 years and that was 10 years ago.
reserves are only meaningful at some at some price point or one
shouldn’t count as reserve if cost some high cost of say $1000 per ton to mine it. But one would select the cheapest to mine
Peak, oil or coal is where you can’t mine more of it per year.
And Peak oil or coal usually means cost go up and eventual lower
production rates with more exteme skyrocketing prices.

I would guess China has already reached peak Coal

Erast Van Doren
Reply to  Eric Worrall
August 18, 2022 4:37 am

Without a major revolution in physics, we won’t go anywhere. A few flights to the moon, Mars, whatever won’t change anything.

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  Erast Van Doren
August 18, 2022 9:43 am

“Revolutions” in physics, have occurred semi-regularly in the past and are continuing even today.

I would estimate that major significant revolutions in physics happen at a rate of about once per human generation (i.e., about one every 20 years).

Richard Page
Reply to  Erast Van Doren
August 18, 2022 1:41 pm

Those revolutions in Physics tend to occur in response to a particular problem or obstacle, I have never heard of one occurring 2 or 3 steps in advance of a problem. Once we get going routinely out into space, let’s then see how we solve the next problem? First things first.

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  Richard Page
August 18, 2022 5:37 pm

Einstein’s famous revolution, summarized by the simple equation E=mc^2, happened well in advance of the need for nuclear fission power plants and well in advance of any “need” for nuclear weapons.

Historians and military scholars have concluded that it is inevitable that the US would have defeated Japan during WWII, although with great casualties on both sides.

It was literally only serendipitous timing of Einstein’s theory, and its reduction to practice by Oppenheimer and others as the end result of the Manhattan Project, that the US was able to use atomic bombs to quickly end WWII.

Reply to  Erast Van Doren
August 18, 2022 11:00 pm

A few flights to Moon could find mineable lunar water. If they don’t find mineable lunar water- the Moon wouldn’t go anywhere.
The lunar polar region is small, a few flight to mars is less likely to find mineable Mars water, as Mars is vast region to explore.

Chris Hanley
August 17, 2022 3:18 pm

When [if] clean energy is available, carbon sequestration and desalination will be cheaper, climate change and water shortages will be solved, and when fossil fuels are out of the picture, the skies will be cleaner, the world will be quieter, the air will be fresher, and the future will be brighter (Elon Musk).

As Manhattan Contrarian wrote (WUTW three weeks ago): “The single most astounding universal failure of all jurisdictions pursuing Net Zero is the failure to pursue any sort of working prototype”.
As Thomas Edison did under the Holborn Viaduct in London.
There you go Mr Musk, how about emulating Edison by actually building a working prototype.

Last edited 1 month ago by Chris Hanley
Rud Istvan
Reply to  Chris Hanley
August 17, 2022 3:57 pm

Musk is the world’s richest man for just three reasons.

  1. His Tesla is the world’s greatest green subsidy miner.
  2. His green Schtick plays well everywhere, as here in China.
  3. SpaceX actually works as advertised at present. He only funded it. But will eventually lose all that value with his wacko Mars ambitions.
Reply to  Rud Istvan
August 17, 2022 5:16 pm

Crazy ideas don’t seem to stop him. Details don’t seem to get in his way. Remember his mini-submarine that was to help rescue the scouts trapped in a Thai cave?

Perhaps his Mars ambitions are aspirational only.

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  Scissor
August 18, 2022 10:45 am

Even Musk’s wealth in not sufficient to develop and execute a plan and associated necessary technology to send humans to the surface of Mars . . . unless it is a one-way trip only and the astronauts volunteer to be “expendable”.

First problem to overcome: there is no single launch vehicle currently available (or even in planning) that has the payload capability needed for a manned trip to land on Mars and perform a return flight from such.

LEO assembly of multiple payloads to make a larger spacecraft and the propellant/propellant tanks (almost certainly to be cryogenic) to fuel an out-and-back mission? . . . you kidding me, right?

Reply to  Gordon A. Dressler
August 18, 2022 11:11 pm

Musk current wealth is not sufficient, but going to use the cheaper Starship to launch bigger an better Starlink satellites.
So he launched 3000 with Falcon 9 and wants to launch his version starlink of 30,000 with Starship.
That his plan, fund his Mars city, with could be 20 or 30 years from
now {though obviously he would like to do it quicker}. But probably
take 5 years to finish launching verison II and Spacex would be company worth trillions.

Reply to  Rud Istvan
August 18, 2022 5:13 am

Actually if he gets Starship working, he will be launching anything and everything into orbit at a fraction of the current costs, regardless if he goes past earth orbit. That will make it a commercial success.

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  rbabcock
August 18, 2022 10:45 am

Any facts to go with that?

Reply to  Gordon A. Dressler
August 18, 2022 6:56 pm

I said if he gets it working .. Musk estimates a launch will be in the $10M range (Falcon is $62M) 100 tons to LEO per launch on a reusable booster is a game changer. I wouldn’t count SpaceX out. The latest Raptor engine is pretty remarkable.

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  rbabcock
August 20, 2022 11:53 am

The Starship Super Heavy (the launch vehicle plus payload/capsule) that is able to launch 100 tons to LEO will use 33—yes, thirty-three—of the newly-developed Raptor 2 engines).

Despite how remarkable the Raptor 2 engine is, getting 33 engines to ignite successfully at the same time and run off a common propellant feed manifold will be even more remarkable.

The difference between 9 engines on the Falcon 9 and 33 engines on the planned Starship Super Heavy is, well, remarkable.

Now, as to the credibility of Musk’s asserted (according to you) $10 M estimate for the total Starship Super Heavy launch vehicle: that would mean each engine could not cost more than 0.6*$10M/33 = $180,000, using the standard rule-of-thumb that engine costs are about 60% of total cost of a launch vehicle.

Even it there was ZERO cost for the rest of the Starship Super Heavy launch vehicle, each engine could not cost more than $10M/33 = $300,000.

Anyone that believes a high performance, dual turbopump-fed, full-flow staged combustion engine designed for 4,400 psi chamber pressure will cost less than $300,000 (even less than $180,000) per unit—even in mass production using 3D printing technology—is, well, naive, to be charitable.

Last edited 1 month ago by Gordon A. Dressler
August 17, 2022 4:01 pm

It is becoming more clear that only nuclear has proven capable of producing practical and reliable ‘clean’ electricity required to run our world. But that doesn’t mean mining oil and gasses will stop by any means as they will be required to build and sustain the nuclear plants as well as many other current uses in medicine, manufacturing, and the myriad of applications most people don’t know about. How long will we go down the wind and solar rabbit hole before we realize the inevitable?

Richard Page
August 17, 2022 4:12 pm

Elon Musk is hailed as a comedy genius in China. This is the only explanation that fits – I’m sure his chinese readers laughed so hard at his comedy routines.

August 17, 2022 4:47 pm

alt headline: World’s Richest Battery Jobber Yeilds to Supplier Whims

August 17, 2022 4:57 pm

A self-sustaining city on Mars where there is no O2, no H2O, no energy, and the zero gravity journey to which will completely atrophy the body. That will burn through the billions.

Reply to  tgasloli
August 17, 2022 6:03 pm

Disagree. Lots of water on Mars, mostly in the form of salty ice. Interestingly, the closer we look, the more ice we find. One way trips to Mars are probably feasible right now, or preferably after production of the first modular reactor capable of being hauled to Mars. Cheers –

Reply to  agimarc
August 17, 2022 8:52 pm

As long as there is water, there is also lots of O2. You can cook it out of the soil as well.

Erast Van Doren
Reply to  MarkW
August 18, 2022 4:41 am

With what energy? The sun is quite feeble there.

Reply to  Erast Van Doren
August 18, 2022 1:59 pm

Nuclear for one.
As for solar, just build a bigger concentrator. Gravity is light.

Reply to  MarkW
August 18, 2022 11:23 pm

Well he could roughly repeat the 30,000 starlink satellites but have be at Mars orbit, and they could be both Power Satellites and internet satellites.
Such “small amount” satelite power would not be much power for 7 billion people, but should be enough for 1 million people on Mars. And you don’t have worry about killing birds.

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  gbaikie
August 20, 2022 12:03 pm

Yes, power satellites have been shown to work so well around Earth.

/sarc off

Reply to  Gordon A. Dressler
August 20, 2022 5:48 pm

The threshold of Earth power satellites is commonly said to be when price of 1 kg of payload is $100 per kg or less to LEO.
We are at 1 kg of payload being $1000 per kg or more to LEO.
Cost per kg to LEO, has never been cheaper than it is now. Or it has been lowering over the decades. And this is not counting that value of dollar has been less and less per decade.
Or in 1970, $1000 was worth more than $1000 now, but you could not buy a launch at $5000 1970 dollars in 1970 per kg to LEO.
It so lower a lot if count inflation lower the value of money.
But a lot things cheaper if you allow for inflation, but rocket launch is cheaper without allowing for inflation and a lot more cheaper if you allow for inflation.
Anyways might take couple decade before launch costs are $100 per kg to LEO.
If Starship is very successful, within 5 years, Starship could cost about $500 per kg to LEO.
What drive price down, is competition. If in 5 years no one other than SpaceX can deliver $1000 per kg to LEO or less, Spacex may continue offering $500 per kg to LEO for many years, but SpaceX cost to deliver it’s in house satellite, could be less than $100 per kg to orbit within 10 years.
Or SpaceX falcon-9 launch for it’s starlink is about 30 million per launch, And NASA pays about 150 million for dragon crew mission or cargo mission to ISS [which is cheaper than what NASA is paying other companies to deliver crew or cargo to ISS.
Or SpaceX has contract, and the agreement of contract for what NASA wants. Or what use to low cost to get crew to ISS, was Russia launch, Spacex is getting as much per launch vs Soyuz.
And about 1/3 of what Boeing gets. But Spacex getting more contracts, {NASA likes to pay less}. In terms of gross sales, Spacex making more money- but if Boeing can get it’s first crew to ISS, in theory Boeing could make more money.
Or at moment, with crew, Spacex is 8 and Boeing is zero- with one coming this fall.
Or if cost less for Spacex, they sell it for less, to get more business. And Spacex used NASA to make his falcon-9 reusable, NASA served as anchor tenant, which NASA wants to do for all US rocket companies. Which might lead to some stiffer competition for SpaceX [which NASA also wants}.

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  agimarc
August 18, 2022 10:47 am

Are the nuclear reactors used in nuclear submarines not considered to be “modular” and “transportable”?

Kevin Stall
August 17, 2022 5:07 pm

I think he is skipping a important human computer component. A human fat file, something to tell the brain where the information is stored. The human brain stores a lot of information and we forget where it is stored.

August 17, 2022 9:20 pm

I’m not sure I’d want my brain connected to a computer.

The human brain connects odd bits in surprising ways. I’d want to know about possible interference with those flashes of insight humans are prone to get. Who is in charge?

An enhanced memory would be nice as would the ability to calculate ‘in your head’. But I’d need some convincing that the sum of the parts would be greater than the whole.

I’d also like to live my life free from fear of magnets or strong magnetic fields.

August 18, 2022 12:37 am

He’s a bit of a nutter, that Elon…

Reply to  griff
August 18, 2022 3:12 am

A very, very rich nutter, griff.

Reply to  griff
August 18, 2022 5:18 am

Something many of us agree on, mate

Climate believer
August 18, 2022 1:25 am

I wouldn’t trust Musk as far as I could spit on him, and that’s putting it politely.
His sc-fi world view is dystopian.

Brain implants, ffs!

May the cult of Musk go the way of the Dodo.

August 18, 2022 3:47 am

muskrat? disregard that clown.

Coach Springer
August 18, 2022 4:40 am

Sometimes we’ve been tempted to think he gets it. Then there’s these moments of clarity. This guy just wants to be THE government oligarch.

August 18, 2022 6:07 am

The world is on track for a sustainable energy transition

Rubbish Elon but good luck to you milking the well-to-do virtue signallers (genuine revheads excepted of course)
How much does it cost to replace an EV battery? –
because the price of lithium battery EVs is well past plumbing the bottom and now rising faster than ICEs for the bleeding obvious the climate changers keep lying about-
Uh, we don’t even have enough resources to replace the batteries we’re running now… – Stockhead

Reply to  observa
August 18, 2022 2:01 pm

I’d say that we are on track. In 4 to 5 hundred years, when gas and oil start to run low, we will need to find something else.

Tom Abbott
August 18, 2022 11:49 am

From the article: “If humans can inhabit other planets, it means that they have passed one of the conditions of the great screening of the universe, then we will become interplanetary citizens, and human civilization will be able to continue.”

I think “inhabiting other planets” is a distraction. At least in this solar system.

To preserve the human race, we should be building large human habitats in space where all the elements for life can be controlled, and the habitats can be moved out of danger if danger presents itself.

“Last week, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos revealed his spaceship company’s new lunar lander, dubbed Blue Moon, and he spelled out a bold and broad vision for humanity’s future in space. Faced with the limits of resources here on Earth, most fundamentally energy, he pointed to life in space as a solution.

“If we move out into the solar system, for all practical purposes, we have unlimited resources,” Bezos said. “We could have a trillion people out in the solar system.” And while colonies on other planets would be plagued by low gravity, long distances to Earth (leading to communication delays), and further limits down the road, those weaknesses are avoided if the colonies remain truly in space.

To that end, Bezos instead suggested people consider taking up residence in O’Neill colonies, a futuristic concept for space settlements first dreamed up decades ago. “These are very large structures, miles on end, and they hold a million people or more each.”

Gerard O’Neill was a physicist from Princeton University who teamed up with NASA in the 1970s on a series of workshops that explored efficient ways for humans to live off-world. Beyond influencing Bezos, his ideas have also deeply affected how many space experts and enthusiasts think about realistic ways of living in space.

“What will space colonies be like?” O’Neill once asked the Space Science Institute he founded. “First of all, there’s no point in going out into space if the future that we see there is a sterile future of living in tin cans. We have to be able to recreate, in space, habitats which are as beautiful, as Earth-like, as the loveliest parts of planet Earth — and we can do that.”

end excerpt

Bezos was a student of O’Neill’s.

Bezos’ and O’Neill’s vision of the future is superior to Musk’s, imo.

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  Tom Abbott
August 18, 2022 11:36 pm

“To preserve the human race, we should be building large human habitats in space where all the elements for life can be controlled . . .”

A utopian vision of a place “where all the elements for life can be controlled” is the anthesis of the manner in which humans evolved. I certainly would not want to live under such conditions . . . and have to report continuously to any “controller”.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Gordon A. Dressler
August 20, 2022 4:42 am

I don’t think you will have to worry about that.

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