NASA is opening an investigation into the culture and safety commitment of Elon Musk’s SpaceX, after the slick entrepreneur lit up a fatty during a live videocast.

Doh!

While appearing September 7th on The Joe Rogan Experience — which I highly recommend, by the way — Elon got cozy in major pot proponent Joe’s weed-friendly atmosphere. During the segment, Musk tried to explain why he sometimes engages in Twitter wars with his detractors.

As reported by the New York Post:

“During the two-and-a-half-hour segment, which was posted on YouTube in September, the 47-year-old Tesla CEO sips whiskey and takes a puff from a blunt during his interview at the show’s California studio. Recreational pot is legal in the Golden State.”

The probe will include Boeing as well as SpaceX. The two titans are jointly tasked with shuttling astronauts to that miracle of modern technology and fulfillment of innumerable 60’s sci-fi movies, the International Space Station.

NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine explained the thinking behind the investigation:

“If I see something that’s inappropriate, the key concern to me is what is the culture that led to that inappropriateness and is NASA involved in that? As an agency we’re not just leading ourselves, but our contractors, as well. We need to show the American public that when we put an astronaut on a rocket, they’ll be safe.”

I can see why NASA might feel empowered to perform an inquiry: In 2014, Musk’s SpaceX signed a $2.6 billion contract with the space agency to transport astronauts for the Commercial Crew Program.

But hold up before you’re impressed with Elon’s wimpy two-and-a-half bil — Boeing’s contract was for $4.2.

Despite the investigation, Bridenstine expressed confidence in the SpaceX crew, noting that the program — which begins in 2019 — needs the trust of the public, and that company culture starts “at the top.”

SpaceX responded to NASA’s announcement, affirming their commitment to safety:

“Human spaceflight is the core mission of our company. There is nothing more important to SpaceX than this endeavor, and we take seriously the responsibility that NASA has entrusted in us to safely and reliably carry American astronauts to and from the International Space Station.”

For a few starter interviews on Rogan’s podcast (and if you can take some fairly rough language at times), I suggest you check out appearances by Ben Shapiro, Jordan Peterson, Ted Nugent, Dave Rubin, and Jesse Ventura. You can find the Experience on YouTube. It’s a cool hang; the show has no time constraint — they just go ’til there’s nothing more to talk about. Watch Elon’s episode here.

 

See 3 more pieces from me: Stacey Abrams vs. legitimacy, school vs. reality, and women vs. vaginas.

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