Elon Musk Debuts His Biggest Fully Electric Model Yet

Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk has unveiled a shiny new toy: a Tesla semi-truck that’s fully electric. Musk says the truck will go into production in 2019.

On today’s show, Glenn and Stu had to talk about Musk’s latest vehicle offerings. Along with the semi, Tesla introduced a second-generation Roadster that Musk vows will be the fastest production vehicle ever.

Glenn described what it’s like to ride in a Tesla, and Stu gave a satirical explanation of how electric vehicles are fueled.

“The good thing is the electricity that powers it actually comes from elves in the wall,” Stu said. “And they run on little hamster wheels and it generates the power. … These elves are organic.”

“They’re free-range elves,” Glenn jokingly added.

This article provided courtesy of TheBlaze.

GLENN: Hello. Welcome to Friday.

I got a lot of things -- I got a lot of things that I want to talk about. You know, the Al Franken stuff. The tax cuts. But I would really like to talk about the new Elon Musk unveiling of the -- the semi-automated semi-truck yesterday and the roadster.

STU: Yeah. Let's be honest about it, it's all about the roadster. Who cares about the stupid truck?

GLENN: I actually care about the stupid truck. But --

STU: You know what, if I'm a trucker, I really do, because it could be one of those things. If you can get a long range without having to spend all the money on gas, there's --

GLENN: There's a lot to be gained there.

STU: And the good thing is, you know, the electricity that powers it actually comes from elves in the walls. And they run on little hampster wheels, and it generates the power.

GLENN: Not exactly. You know, it's so good for the environment.

STU: It is. Because this energy comes directly from these elves. And these elves are organic. They're grown in farms in -- in the Netherlands.

GLENN: Free-range elves.

STU: Free-range elves.

They're shipped over here. They go into your wall. They get in hampster wheels, and they run around. And that generates the electricity that powers these things.

GLENN: And they do not burp, they do not fart. So there's no gas coming from the elves.

STU: No. They don't need to be fed.

GLENN: Yeah. Now, a lot of people think that the electricity doesn't come from magic elves in the wall.

STU: Deniers? You're going to bring up deniers?

GLENN: I want to bring up deniers, just to show how stupid they are. They believe that the electricity that comes out of the wall, that you would plug your electric car into, you know, believes from some sort of coal-fired electricity. Or, you know, some plant that's just belching a lot of smoke in the air.

STU: A natural gas is part of the equation?

GLENN: Yeah. They think that you can dig up these little black rocks and then burn that. And it will make the elves' job nonexistent.

STU: Ridiculous. These pathetic people.

GLENN: These elf deniers.

STU: But I will say the roadsters, zero to 60 in 1.9 seconds.

GLENN: No car has ever gone 1.90 to 60. 2.0, I think is the fastest ever. And typical Elon Musk, he was just -- this is what we have in the prototype. Inferring that it's going to get better than that.

STU: Yeah. Now it doesn't come out until 2020. But you can put your 250 grand down now to get a Founders model, for when it comes out. You got to set aside the quarter mil, you know, for a few years, and that will give you not the car, but the opportunity to buy the car.

GLENN: Oh, wait. Wait. Wait.

STU: When they tell you what it costs.

GLENN: It doesn't go to the car?

STU: No. I mean, it's a down payment on the car, but you will still owe more money on the car.

GLENN: They have no idea how much it will cost yet.

STU: That's only for the Founders model. You can put $50,000 for a regular one. And I guess at that point, it's a couple hundred thousand. It's not going to be Bugatti level. Because the Bugatti Veyron -- you know, you can get into $2 million for that. That will do zero to 60 in 2.3, I think. So this is faster than that. They think the top speed will be around 250, which would be slower than the Bugatti.

GLENN: No, no, no. He said, I don't want to get into the top speed now, but it is over 250.

STU: Over 250. But you can get up to almost 300 in the Bugatti now. Electric cars are never going to be -- they're not going to compete necessarily as well at a top speed level, but they're faster, zero to 60. The things that you would actually use in a car are faster with the electric cars.

GLENN: Uh-huh.

STU: You don't use 300 miles an hour. That's not a usable --

GLENN: Yeah, I would agree with that. But I don't know if I use zero to 60 in 1.9 either.

STU: Oh, absolutely. You can do that getting on the highway. You could do that -- when they brought them in here and test drove them, and one of my favorite things to do, which is really safe, by the way --

GLENN: Sure. Sure.

STU: -- is you -- you know how you get on the on-ramp? And what you do is you slowly accelerate it in traffic. That's certainly one way to go.

GLENN: Sure. Sure.

STU: Let me give you an alternate plan here.

GLENN: Okay. All right. Sure. All right.

STU: This is how I do. What you do is you know how sometimes let's say you were to spill cup of coffee, right?

GLENN: Yes.

STU: You would probably pull over to the side and stop.

GLENN: I wouldn't.

STU: Really? You would just keep going?

GLENN: No.

STU: Just let it sink into the carpet. Okay. So, you know, you drop something. Whatever. You need to make a phone call, something like that.

GLENN: Sure.

STU: Kids are acting up in the backseat. You pull over to the side of the road. So let's just say that happened on the on-ramp, for an undisclosed reason. And you were to stop on the side of the on-ramp. And things are clear around you. And you just kind of wait. And you look kind of behind you.

And you wait until a car going at full speed passes you, going 70 miles an hour, and then you mash on the gas pedal, which is not a gas pedal in this particular case, and you pass it before the end of the ramp. That's the sort of speed I'm talking about. Is legitimately how fast these things go. And it's incredible. Because it jerks you back like you're on a ridiculous six flags rollercoaster.

GLENN: People don't understand the constant acceleration. When you first drive a Tesla, it doesn't have a gearbox. It's constant acceleration. So you're expecting the (sound effect).

STU: It doesn't do that.

GLENN: It doesn't do that.

STU: No.

GLENN: And it's just constant. And it peels your eyes back. It really does. And this, I can't even imagine.

STU: And this, we've never driven one that's near that fast. The one we drove was like around 3 seconds, 2.9.

GLENN: Yeah.

STU: But, I mean, anything under six seconds feels pretty fast. Like, if you get, I don't know, a decent Mustang, right? That you could buy from a Ford dealership is going to go somewhere under six seconds maybe. Under four seconds is like world class speed. Like, you're talking 600-horsepower. I mean, those are, you know, really, really like super cars, under four seconds.

Under two seconds is insanity.

GLENN: Yeah. Has never been done before.

STU: And Elon Musk is obsessed with Spaceballs.

GLENN: Yes.

STU: The movie Spaceballs. It's so weird.

GLENN: He said, if anybody is a fan of Spaceballs, you know that there's only one speed above ludicrous.

Now, ludicrous is the speed that you type on your screen of a Tesla. You pick the kind of -- you know, you want an economy speed or whatever.

STU: Yep.

GLENN: And you can ludicrous, which means, I don't care about how long the battery is going to last. I just want it to just go fast. So you hit ludicrous. And that's when you hit the top speeds. This one doesn't have ludicrous. This has economy, you know, highway --

STU: It still has the other ones from Spaceballs 2. And ludicrous speed was the fastest speed in Spaceballs, with one exception.

GLENN: With one exception, which is plaid. So this one has a setting of plaid.

STU: Plaid speed.

GLENN: I love his sense of humor.

STU: Yeah. I think there's a lot -- this audience when it comes to politics and talking about the environment, like, Elon Musk would be very annoying to talk to about these topics, because he wouldn't agree with us at all.

GLENN: Agree.

STU: But I like the idea that this guy is living the billionaire life the way I would live it. He's just like, you know what, I want a giant bank tube that goes from Los Angeles to San Francisco in four seconds. And then he just starts building it.

GLENN: Yeah. It's not just because he's a billionaire -- I mean, that helps. It is also because he's so super damn smart.

STU: It is that he's super smart, I will say. However --

GLENN: Come on. You listen to that guy, and he's like, no, of course, we all know that you can bore under somebody's house. And if you're 100 feet below, you can't feel anything. I mean, you know, you won't even notice that there's a whole highway underneath your -- you're like, what? No, I didn't know that.

STU: Right. You're parsing this thing in a way that's not making my point exactly. Because, yes, his ideas are better than mine. But my point is, if I had billions of dollars, I would try stupid crazy stuff.

GLENN: Yes. Okay. So he tries stupid stuff. But it wouldn't necessarily be successful.

STU: Right. They would probably fail all the time. And I think a lot of Elon Musk's ideas would fail, and that's okay. I mean, I don't know that his solar plans will be hugely successful. I know it's really important to him. He's tried a lot of crazy ideas. And not all of them have worked. Some of them may.

GLENN: You know, I'm going to build some solar panels. I'm also going to build a rocket ship and have it land again. When that one works, I kind of give you a pass on everything else. You know.

STU: What's the normal billionaire thing to do? I'm going to start a hedge fund.

GLENN: I'm going to build a wing on a hospital.

STU: Yeah. Those are all great goals. Right?

GLENN: Yeah, they're great.

STU: I'm going to find real estate to invest in.

GLENN: Yeah.

STU: Those are all fine. This guy is trying to make lasers.

GLENN: This is the first guy that has said, we're going to Mars. By Tuesday. By Tuesday, we're going to Mars.

STU: He may do it in the roadster too, which is kind of amazing.

GLENN: I know. So here's the audio. He rented a big aircraft hangar out in California, to introduce his new driverless truck. And at the end, the truck opened up. And a roadster drove out. Because he did the Steve Jobs thing. Oh, you know what, there's one more thing, I think. Open up the back of the truck.

And this roadster came out. The crowd went wild. This is him at the end of it, in full-fledged ludicrous mode for Elon Musk.

ELON: Six -- these numbers sound nutty, but they're real. 620-mile range. That's 1,000-kilometer range. This would be the first time an electric vehicle breaks 1,000-kilometer. A production electric vehicle will travel more than 1,000 kilometers in a single truck at highway speed.

But you're able to travel from LA to San Francisco and back at highway speed without recharging.

(applauding)

But the point of doing this is to just give a hard-core smackdown to gasoline parts.

GLENN: Unbelievable. Elon Musk.

We live in such an exciting time. We're just concentrating on all the wrong things. We're concentrating on all these scumbags.

The themes of healing and redemption appear throughout the Bible.

Our bodies are buried in brokenness, but they will be raised in glory. They are buried in weakness, but they will be raised in strength. — 1 Corinthians 15:43
It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners. — Mark 2:17.

So, for many Christians, it's no surprise to hear that people of faith live longer lives.

Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed; save me, and I shall be saved, for you are my praise. — Jeremiah 17:14.

But it is certainly lovely to hear, and a recent study by a doctoral student at Ohio State University is just one more example of empirical evidence confirming the healing benefits of faith and religious belief.

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Moreover, the study finds that religious belief can lengthen a person's life.

A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. — Proverbs 17:22
Lord, your discipline is good, for it leads to life and health. You restore my health and allow me to live! — Isaiah 38:16

The study analyzed over 1,000 obituaries nationwide and found that people of faith lived longer than people who were not religious. Laura Wallace, lead author of the study, noted that "religious affiliation had nearly as strong an effect on longevity as gender does, which is a matter of years of life."

The study notes that, "people whose obits mentioned a religious affiliation lived an average of 5.64 years longer than those whose obits did not, which shrunk to 3.82 years after gender and marital status were considered."

And He called to Him His twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every disease and every affliction. — Matthew 10:1

"The researchers found that part of the reason for the boost in longevity came from the fact that many religiously affiliated people also volunteered and belonged to social organizations, which previous research has linked to living longer. The study provides persuasive evidence that there is a relationship between religious participation and how long a person lives," said Baldwin Way, co-author of the study and associate professor of psychology at Ohio State.

Prayer is good medicine, and faith is a good protector.

In addition, the study showed how the effects of religion on longevity might depend in part on the personality and average religiosity of the cities where people live, Way said.

Prayer is good medicine, and faith is a good protector.

And the power of the Lord was with him to heal. — Luke 5:17
Heal the sick in it and say to them, The kingdom of God has come near to you. — Luke 10:9.

In early June, the Social Security and Medicare trustees released their annual report on the fiscal health of these programs, and the situation looks dire. Medicare is scheduled to run out of money in 2026 (three years sooner than anticipated), while Social Security is expected to run out in 2034. The rising national debt is only one of the well-known financial struggles the millennial generation faces. The burdens of student loan debt, high housing prices (thanks to zoning restrictions), stagnant wage growth, the rising cost of healthcare and lingering aftershocks of the Great Recession are among the biggest sources of economic anxiety millennials feel.

Progressive politicians have been very successful at courting the youth vote, partly because they actually promote policy ideas that address many of these concerns. As unrealistic or counterproductive as Senator Bernie Sanders' proposals for single-payer health care or a $15 an hour minimum wage might be, they feel in theory like they would provide the economic stability and prosperity millennials want.

RELATED: Time to reverse course: America is being corrupted by its own power

Republicans, on the other hand, have struggled to craft a message to address these concerns. Fiscal conservatives recognize, correctly, that the burden of the $20 trillion national debt and over $200 trillion in unfunded liabilities will fall on millennials. Some conservatives have even written books about that fact. But the need to reform entitlements hasn't exactly caught millennials' attention. Pollster Kristen Soltis Anderson, in her book The Selfie Vote, notes that millennials generally view protecting the safety net as more important than reducing the deficit.

Clearly, Republicans have a problem. They need to craft solutions that address the millennial generation's struggles, but they can't seem to sell entitlement reform, their biggest policy preference that addresses those problems. The Republican approach to wooing millennials on policy is failing because talking about stopping the debt from reaching an unsustainable level is long-term and abstract, and offers few immediate tangible benefits. A new approach to both pave the way for entitlement reform and give millennials an immediate financial boost is to first reform not entitlement spending, but the payroll tax: specifically, by partially (or wholly) replacing it with a value-added tax.

Under the current Social Security model, workers pay for the benefits of current retirees through the payroll tax. This system creates the illusion of a pension program, in which what you put in is what you get out, but in reality Social Security is a universal safety net program for the elderly paid for by taxes. The payroll tax falls on workers and is a tax on labor, while the value-added tax (VAT) is a tax on consumption imposed at every part of the production process. Assuming that this policy change is revenue-neutral, switching to a VAT will shift the responsibility for funding Social Security and Medicare away from workers, disproportionately poorer and younger, and onto everyone participating in the economy as a whole. Furthermore, uncoupling Social Security funding from payroll taxes would pave the way for fiscal reforms to transform the program from a universal benefit program to one geared specifically to eliminating old-age poverty, such as means-testing benefits for high-income beneficiaries, indexing benefits to prices rather than wages or changing the retirement age.

Switching from the payroll tax to the VAT would address both conservative and liberal tax policy preferences.

Switching from the payroll tax to the VAT would address both conservative and liberal tax policy preferences. As the Tax Policy Center notes, the change would actually make the tax system more progressive. The current payroll tax is regressive, meaning that people with lower incomes tend to pay a higher effective tax rate than people with higher incomes. On the other hand, the value-added tax is much closer to proportional than the payroll tax, meaning that each income group pays closer to the same effective tax rate.

For Republicans, such a change would fit conservative economic ideas about the long-run causes of economic growth. A value-added tax has a much broader base than the payroll tax, and therefore would allow for much lower marginal tax rates, and lower marginal tax rates mean smaller disincentives to economic activity. According to the Tax Foundation's analysis of a value-added tax, the VAT would be a more economically efficient revenue source than most other taxes currently in the tax code.

Not only would replacing part or all of the payroll tax provide an immediate benefit to millennial taxpayers, it would also open the door for the much-needed entitlement reforms that have been so politically elusive. Furthermore, it would make the tax code both more pro-growth and less regressive. In order to even begin to address the entitlement crisis, win millennial support and stimulate the economy in a fiscally responsible manner, Republicans must propose moving from the payroll tax to the VAT.

Alex Muresianu is a Young Voices Advocate. His writing has appeared in Townhall and The Federalist. He is a federal policy intern at the Tax Foundation. Opinions expressed here are his only and not the views of the Tax Foundation. He can be found on Twitter @ahardtospell.

Glenn was joined by Alanna Sarabia from "Good Morning Texas" at Mercury Studios on Thursday for an exclusive look at Mercury Museum's new "Rights & Responsibilities" exhibit. Open through Father's Day, the temporary museum features artifacts from pop culture, America's founding, World Ward II and more, focusing on the rights and responsibilities America's citizens.

Get tickets and more information here.

Watch as Glenn gives a sneak peek at some of the unique artifacts on display below.

History at the Mercury Museum

Alanna Sarabia interviews Glenn Beck for "Good Morning Texas" at Mercury Studios.

Several months ago, at the Miss Universe competition, two women took a selfie, then posted it on Instagram. The caption read, "Peace and love." As a result of that selfie, both women faced death threats, and one of the women, along with her entire family, had to flee her home country. The occasion was the 2017 Miss Universe competition, and the women were Miss Iraq and Miss Israel. Miss Iraq is no longer welcome in her own country. The government threatened to strip her of her crown. Of course, she was also badgered for wearing a bikini during the competition.

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In an interview, Miss Iraq, Sarah Idan, said:

When I posted the picture I didn't think for a second there would be blowback. I woke up to calls from my family and the Miss Iraq Organization going insane. The death threats I got online were so scary. The director of the Miss Iraq Organization called me and said they're getting heat from the ministry. He said I have to take the picture down or they will strip me of my title.

Yesterday, Miss Iraq, Sarah Idan, posted another selfie with Miss Israel, during a visit to Jerusalem.

In an interview, she said that:

I don't think Iraq and Israel are enemies; I think maybe the governments are enemies with each other. There's a lot of Iraqi people that don't have a problem with Israelis.

This is, of course, quite an understatement: Iraq, home to roughly 15,000 Palestinians, refuses to acknowledge Israel as a legitimate country, as it is technically at war with Israel. The adages says that a picture is worth a thousand words. What are we to do when many of those words are hateful or deadly? And how can we find the goodness in such bad situations?