Elon Musk revealed in an interview published Thursday that his use of marijuana on “The Joe Rogan Experience” created a nightmare for his company.
Musk smoked marijuana on an episode of Rogan’s show in 2018, saying he wasn’t a regular user himself and asking if it was legal.
After taking a puff from a joint, the tech tycoon handed it back.
In California, where the podcast was recorded, recreational marijuana use is legal, but SpaceX maintains federal contracts and marijuana use is illegal.
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Musk told the “Full Send” podcast this week that the federal government has started random drug tests on him and other SpaceX employees “to show that I’m not a drug addict.”
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“I got a lot of negative reactions,” Musk told the podcast. “He was pretty crazy, actually.
“Because SpaceX has a contract with the federal government, and it’s still federally illegal. So SpaceX’s competitors said, ‘Hey, why don’t you do anything? Look at him shamelessly smoking weed on the Joe Rogan podcast.'”
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Musk said it was a damaging incident.
“I didn’t think I would get so much backlash,” he said. “The consequences for me and for SpaceX were not good.”
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Musk said the increased scrutiny of his employees bothered him, and he recalled apologizing, saying, “Sorry guys, I didn’t realize it would be that big of a deal.”