The Margin: Elon Musk calls transit expert an ‘idiot,’ and then the ‘idiot’ fires back

We all have our buttons, and Elon Musk clearly got his pushed earlier this week after a Wired story revealed his serious distaste for public transportation.

A serious, and perhaps irrational, distaste.

“It’s a pain in the ass,” the Tesla TSLA, +1.65%  boss and Boring Co. visionary said at a recent event. “That’s why everyone doesn’t like it. And there’s like a bunch of random strangers, one of who might be a serial killer, OK, great. And so that’s why people like individualized transport, that goes where you want, when you want.”

Read: How Elon Musk and shorter commutes could transform lives.

Transit expert Jarrett Walker took to Twitter to explain why Musk’s vision of a personalized pod speeding through the city’s underbelly may make sense in the gilded fantasies of the 1%, but not in the real world.

Walker probably didn’t expect his little tweet to actually be seen — much less responded to — by Musk. But it was. And he did.

Musk, would later “apologize” and snarkily explain to his 16.7 million followers that he meant “sanctimonious idiot.” Claws out.

The internet immediately took sides. There was a contingent praising Musk for his relentless assault on the status quo, and then there were the likes of Jeff Novich, who made his feelings quite clear:

The debate raged over the weekend, but Musk didn’t linger too long. After all, he’s got cars to build, tunnels to dig and planets to conquer.

Walker, however, continued to milk the Twitter buzz, tweeting and retweeting about the whole interaction several days later. Here he is sharing his latest thoughts, and even invoking the great Yogi Berra:

Meanwhile, Musk’s Boring Co. could potentially start digging tunnels in Baltimore as early as next month, according to published reports.

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