It’s always amusing to watch technologists project dreams into the future with no reference whatsoever to real-world human affairs. Let’s look at the reality for a moment.

First of all, Tesla vehicles are so poorly designed that manufacturing them is a nightmare. There’s no standardization even of fastners, never mind a rational design to ease production at scale. This is why Tesla consistently fails to meet Musk’s projections of cars built.

Secondly, the legal liability issues are entirely unresolved at this point. Why does this matter? Let’s imagine that Tesla owners don’t mind having other people sitting in their vehicles, depositing food particles and mud everywhere, damaging the upholstery, and generally abusing the privilege as we humans always do when dealing with property that’s not our own to care for. So now, with eyes on the massive amounts of cash to be made from their shiny new Teslas, the owners make their cars available for ride-on-demand. And then… someone is struck by their car while in robo-taxi mode.

Liability issues, anyone? Suddenly that $30k per year becomes a lose-my-house-and-maybe-do-time-in-jail proposition. If only a single person falls victim to this risk, every other Tesla owner will pull the plug immediately on the robo-taxi concept because we humans reason by anecdote, not statistical probability.

Sure, the courts will eventually rule in some way to reduce personal liability but that process will take many years.

Thus, in the real world, Musk’s companies continue to bleed cash and fail to live up to the endless hype. Because reality always wins, no matter how good you may be at spinning a vision for the credulous.

Anyone who enjoys my articles here on Medium may be interested in my books Why Democracy Failed and The Praying Ape, both available from Amazon.