A group called the Citizens for the Republic (CftR) has a real problem with Elon Musk. No, really. With Electrek's help - which says CftR is "full of misinformation about Tesla, electric vehicles, and solar energy" – let's try to figure out what is going on.

Here's what we know about Citizens for the Republic. It calls itself, "a national organization dedicated to revitalizing the conservative movement." It was founded in 1977 by Ronald Reagan, faded out and was then brought back to life and is currently headed by Laura Ingraham, who serves as the group's national chairman and just might be President Trump's new White House press secretary. While CftR claims that its mission is to, "ferret out corruption that wastes taxpayer dollars and continually undermines the American people in favor of the powerful and profitable," the reality is that they're a wee bit one-sided.

When you hear the words "Big Energy," what do you think of? Oil? Gas? Solar panels? If you guessed one of the first two, you're logical. If you thought of renewable energy from the sun, you might be working for CftR. See, this group really hates on solar, saying:

The solar industry has been a pet-industry of the Obama Administration and those who claim to care about the environment. Washington has given Solar companies millions in federal tax credits and subsidies that are costing taxpayers millions, despite posting losses year after year. When Solyndra, Ener1, and others get government tax breaks, the American people need to know. The US government needs to stop meddling in industries and create an atmosphere that allows to prosper without pledging taxpayer support.

What's not mentioned in CftR's screed against "Big Energy"? The $4 billion that the oil and gas industry gets from US taxpayers each year. Strange, that.

So, that's CftR, and here's a small sampling of headlines and links from their near-endless stream of anti-Musk articles in a database, which it calls "Stop Elon From Failing Again": Most of these are links to critical stories, and CftR says that the database illustrates how, "Elon Musk has defrauded the American Taxpayer out of over $4.9 Billion in the form of subsidies, grants, and other favors." This is not true, of course, but truth has never stopped propagandists. As an aside, CftR uses a photo this author took of Musk a few years ago to illustrate their list without attribution or payment, and it's hard to trust anyone who just steals the work of others.

Speaking of hiding behind the work of others, there's another type of anti-Musk energy at work: fake bylines on articles that make false claims about all of the taxpayer money Musk is supposedly wasting. As Yahoo says, "Musk attracts an unusually large and varied number of shrouded online attacks, including phony op-ed pieces, websites with shadowy backers, and individuals who hide behind aliases."

Musk himself would like to know what's going on here: South Park reference aside, one place to start might be Zorine Shirley's Rolodex. She's listed as the treasurer of the CftR PAC and it sounds like she's well-connected in right-wing circles. Perhaps one of our readers might have some insights to share?

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