From Tesla Motors to the "Patriot Hack" – Martin Eberhard on Protecting Your Privacy Online


I found Martin Eberhard, co-founder and former CEO of Tesla Motors, in the pages of 2600.

I was deep in the throes of palate nirvana at Stumptown Coffee in Portland (good coffee is not bitter) when I came across a curious article in 2600: The Hacker Quarterly.

Nursing the best dark brew I’ve ever had, I moved from a great article on free global phone calls to another on the language of gang signs, ultimately landing on a column signed not with an anonymous pseudonym but by Martin Eberhard, co-founder of Tesla Motors.

The subject? Engineering a “patriot hack” to protect privacy online. This, I remember thinking, should be interesting…

It was so interesting, in fact, that I reached out to Martin after my bear-rich Pacific Northwest roadtrip and asked for permission to reprint his article here. He graciously agreed.

This article is broken up into four sections, which I titled:

The Patriot Hack – From China’s Firewall to Lockpicking (15%)
The Political and Technical Landscape (60%)
Strategies to Protect Your Privacy (10%)
The “Haystack” Call to Action (15%)

If you want a quick read and aren’t interested in the political or legal aspects, just jump over the second section.

I hope you find this as thought-provoking — and practical — as I did.

The Patriot Hack – From China’s Firewall to Lockpicking

How long can the regime control what people are allowed to know, without the people caring enough to object? On current evidence, for quite a while.

So concludes James Fallows’ article titled “Penetrating the Great Firewall” in the March ’08 issue of The Atlantic. The Chinese firewall is a crude but effective system that looks at every single Internet connection in the country, and decides whether or not the user may proceed, based on policies set by the government. If a Chinese citizen looks too hard for information about, say, Tibetan independence, the Tiananmen Square massacre, or Falun Gong, not only might her search be blocked, she is also inviting a visit from the police.

An outrageous invasion of privacy, isn’t it?

Reading Fallows’ article immediately made me think about how to get around the Chinese firewall, and made me wonder how many people there already have. I guess it’s the hacker instinct in me – I go straight from being outraged about the invasion of privacy to wondering how I might hack it if I had to.

I figured out how ordinary locks worked sometime in junior high school, and soon thereafter, I figured out how to pick these locks, how to make keys for them without fancy locksmith machines, and how to re-key locks my way. Soon thereafter, I discovered computers, which definitely were not personal in those days. I got kicked out of my 10th grade computer programming (Fortran) class for allegedly loading something into the school district’s mainframe that brought the whole thing down. (No comment.) In those days, such security systems were challenges – picking the lock was an end to itself.

As I grew up, I channeled this energy into getting a decent engineering degree, then into becoming an entrepreneur. I guess you could say that Tesla Motors was my first try at hacking the global energy system.

The Political and Technical Landscape

Meanwhile we are busily transforming the “Land of the Free” into a high-tech surveillance society of our own. In the name of preventing terrorism in this post-9/11 world, we have come to accept the Patriot Act, video cameras watching us along highways and intersections, more video cameras in other public places, invasive airport screening, scrutinized financial transactions, widespread wiretaps, surveillance of our online activities, efforts to create national identity cards, face recognition equipment at sporting events, and lots more.

Alarmingly, we give up our privacy not just to protect ourselves from terrorists, but also for mundane convenience: “preference” information gathered by online retailers, credit card usage data, ubiquitous RFID tags embedded in consumer goods, “club” discount cards at supermarkets, deep personal information posted at social networking sites and then sold to marketers, open wireless networks, etc.

In this article I focus on the ocean of data collected about us by search engine companies.

We know that search engine companies collect and save massive amounts of information about our searches, but then again, search engines are so useful and convenient. They ostensibly use this information to tune the advertising that we get to see. We also know that many sites sell the data they collect to others. Who knows to what other ends these data are put? Some, such as Google says as a matter of policy that they will not be evil.

Unfortunately, your privacy is not a right that is clearly or specifically called out in the US Constitution. Some specific aspects of your privacy are protected, such as the privacy of your beliefs (in the 1st Amendment), privacy of your home against demands that it be used to house soldiers (in the 3rd Amendment), privacy of you and your possessions against unreasonable searches (in the 4th Amendment), and perhaps most importantly the 5th Amendment’s privilege against self-incrimination, which provides some protection for the privacy of your personal information.

Since about 1923, the US Supreme Court has interpreted the “liberty” guarantee of the 14th Amendment to guarantee an increasingly broad right to privacy, and is the basis of most privacy protection outside those specifically listed. But the future of this constitutional privacy protection remains an open question. In our current Supreme Court, the so-called “originalists,” like Justices Scalia and Thomas, are not inclined to protect your privacy beyond those plainly and specifically guaranteed in the Bill of Rights. (Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork has derided the right of privacy as “a loose cannon in the law.” Good thing he never made it onto the Court!)

Beyond constitutional protection, your privacy and the protection of your sensitive or personal information are protected somewhat by a patchwork of statutes on a per-industry basis. The Privacy Act of 1974 prevents the unauthorized disclosure of your personal information that is held by the federal government. The Fair Credit Reporting Act protects information about you that has been gathered by credit reporting agencies. The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act restricts what information about your children (age 13 and under) can be collected by web sites. The Sarbanes-Oxley Act, HIPAA and GLBA each contain some protection for some of your personal or confidential information. Some state laws also provide protection.

Since privacy is not specifically protected in the constitution, there will continue to be a battle between those of us who want our privacy protected and those who want to invade it – often our own government, certainly businesses who aggregate and sell our eyeballs, and worst of all, cooperation between the two.

Let’s not forget most of the phone companies’ gleeful cooperation with the US government’s widespread warrantless wiretap program. You can bet that every service provider company – search engine companies included – is paying close attention to the immunity that Congress is right now granting to these phone companies for their illegal participation in this wiretapping program. [Note from Tim: I did a post on the practical implications of this and FISA here.]

What will happen when the government asks your favorite search engine company to divulge what you and I have searched for? This has happened already. So far, Google has resisted, but AOL and others did not. The World Privacy Forum notes:

“In 2006, AOL released about 20 million search queries of over 500,000 of its users. Those queries were put on the web. Reporters for the New York Times were able to identify a user from the search queries; others have also been able to identify users. In 2005, the U.S. Department of Justice subpoenaed Google, Yahoo, MSN, and AOL for tens of millions of users’ search queries. Google successfully fought the request, and was able to limit its disclosure, but it is unknown how much data other companies may have turned over.”

Although has subsequently announced that they will delete your searches after 18 months, Google has not.

To get an idea bout how long Google is interested in your data, a Google cookie on your machine expires in the year 2038! [Note from Tim: this appears to have been reduced but someone with better detective skills should comment.] So the Google search you made 3 years ago for, say, “file sharing music” could come back to haunt you 3 years from now when some new, even more odious version of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) comes into law.

Can even Google forever be trusted not to be evil? To what new ends will they put all that data about us? Anyway, doesn’t it creep you out knowing that they are saving and analyzing every search you have ever made?

And now, with Google’s acquisition of Doubleclick, they will be able to correlate your searches with the rest of your web browsing – and maybe make it more painful to block cookies from Doubleclick and Google.

Strategies to Protect Your Privacy

An anonymizer tool or a proxy site will mask your IP address and some of the info about your computer when you surf the web.

To get an idea about what websites, including search engines already know about you, check out this site: Spooky.

I use an Ironkey when I can, and there are both free sites and pay sites that can make your surfing anonymous. But some websites don’t work well with these tools. [From Tim: I cannot wait to test Pandora -- one of my favorite sites -- overseas using some of the proxy sites.]

The World Privacy Forum suggests several strategies to help protect your privacy while using search engines:

• Do not accept search engine cookies. If you already have some on your computer, delete them.
• Do not sign up for email at the same search engine where you regularly search.
• Mix it up. Use a variety of search engines.
• Watch what you search for.
• Read your news on one search engine, have your email on another, and use a handful of other separate search engines for Web research.
• Vary the physical location you search from.
• If you surf using a cable modem, or a static (unchanging) Internet connection, ask your service provider to give you a new IP address.
• Be aware that your online purchases can be correlated to your search activity at some search engines.

The “Haystack” Call to Action

Unfortunately, these search strategies are cumbersome and not especially effective.

We certainly can not count on the government to respect or help to protect our privacy. And I would rather not have to trust Google and to protect my privacy.

What we need is a simple tool that requires little of our attention, and provides pretty good privacy – something as simple to use as a browser plug-in.

This is an opportunity for a little constructive hacking, and browsers that allow plug-ins provide the perfect opportunity. What I am proposing is a simple plug-in for the Firefox browser (and any other browser that supports plug-ins) that will bury your searches in noise. Let’s call this plug-in “Haystack.” [There are step-by-step tutorials for how to create Firefox plug-ins]

Here is how it works: Haystack generates a relatively low level background of random searches across a variety of search engines whenever your computer and your network connection are not too busy. The goal is to generate hundreds to thousands of random (hay) searches for every real search you do, such that your searches are a small needle in the haystack of these automatically-generated searches.

Search engines generally run analytic software that constantly looks for attacks – denial of service attacks, bogus click-throughs to pump up somebody’s advertising costs, etc. Since the goal of Haystack is to protect our privacy, not to bring any search engine down, it must be written in such a way that, from the search engine’s point of view, it looks like you are just manually searching.

Search engine variety: through a setup option, you can select which search engines Haystack uses, matching the ones you normally use yourself.

Frequency: I think one search every 15 seconds on average is about right, though the interval should be random, varying from say 5 seconds to about 5 minutes. If your machine is on for 10 hours per day, this will generate 2,400 “hay” searches per day. Remember, the goal is to look as much like a lot of human-generated searches as possible, not to jam up the search engine.

Search terms: this needs to be very broad, random, and always changing. I suggest seeding the program with a search word list, and then pulling new search terms from the search results themselves, as well as occasionally from the text on the front pages of news sites like The searches must include a spectrum of provocative terms, so that any such search that you might do will not stand out.

Search complexity: like search terms, broad and random. Search for single words, as well as several words at a time, and even with excluded words.

Computer usage: Ideally, Haystack should not initiate searches when either your computer is very busy or your network connection is very busy. Since the actual search results are not valuable, Haystack should even abort an initiated search by closing the connection to the search engine if CPU usage suddenly increases.

• User controls:
o On/off radio button
o Check boxes to enable one or more search engine sites
o Slider for search frequency (2 seconds to 10 minutes?)
o Button to clear search engine cookies and private data
o Button to get latest version

Output: Haystack should not bother the user with an open tab; the search results should be silently loaded and discarded (after gleaning a new search term or two from the data). A small icon on the toolbar indicating that Haystack is running should be good enough, perhaps also indicating the ratio of Haystack searches to your own searches.

If you and I both run Haystack, then the “information” search engines collect from our searches is mostly noise. Perfect. But think what happens if millions of us run Haystack… It does throw a monkey wrench into their lovely data collection machinery, doesn’t it?

Such is the cost of asserting our right to privacy.

So why am I writing this? Simple: I am a hardware hacker. My software abilities are limited to some really tight assembly language code. I am also spending most of my time planning my next big hack into the world of oil consumption, perhaps the subject of a future article.

Although I care a lot about privacy and recognize its defense as a patriotic act, I am not the one to write Haystack.

Are you?

[Postscript: Readers have suggested several good tools that do most of what Haystack is designed to do. Read the comments for all the goodies, but here are two excellent picks: Scroogle (anonymizes Google searches) and TrackMeNot (noise-producing Firefox plug-in).]


Posted on: October 8, 2008.

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60 comments on “From Tesla Motors to the "Patriot Hack" – Martin Eberhard on Protecting Your Privacy Online

  1. Google currently only uses one cookie that I am aware of. It is described as a Preferences cookie, which is just a polite way of saying that it is recording some aspects of what you do in order to “make future use more personal”… blah blah blah; sounds like data mining to me. It currently is set to stay on the host hard drive for 2 year from creation (assuming you don’t visit google again within that 2 years) Google claims that it is does not store user’s search history, but I have not done enough digging to verify this. A growing file size would be one indicator that this may be happening. And of course there is the EULA and Privacy Statement to consider (does anyone read these beside me?), but I tend to feel that legal documents only apply when a company is acting legally (and morally). Google has; however, claimed to anonymize its security logs after 18-24 months, meaning that after this amount of time, IP and cookie associations are removed.
    Now, this applies if you stop using google for 18-24 months. So if you are worried about that “controversial” material you view 6 months ago, you might want to delete the Google cookie, have your ISP change your IP address and cross your fingers that courts decide that past data usage can be grandfathered into law in the same way that physical actions can.

    Here is an interesting article about Google’s response to overwhelming privacy concerns:


  2. The Constitution is only meaningful to the extent that people protect it. If anyone can modify it on a whim, it changes from a foundational document with real power to a piece of paper.

    If you really feel the right to privacy should be constitutionally protected (and reading this article, I have mixed views on it), advocate for it! Don’t insist that some judge follow your preference, but push for a constitutional amendment.

    Amendments are hard to pass. But that’s a feature, not a bug.


  3. Tim,

    Interesting article.
    However, I doubt that the average person needs to fear the U.S. government, although I know that Portland is the heart of this type of paranoia. Most tracking of computer footprints is done for commercial purposes, not for nefarious secret government projects. What makes you think that the U.S. government has the time or desire to care what you search for on Google? Of course China is a different situation. Is is possible though that many of the outspoken persons in the U.S.(many who also read 2600) are actually worried that their illegal activities could come to light? I know that those that are participating in forums trading stolen credit card information, or perhaps growing illegal substances on their Portland property, would love to be more invisible. However, for most of us, thinking that someone is interested in what we as individuals search for is just plain silly and paranoid.

    Privacy is good, but too much paranoia is not. Too far down that road and we would all be talking about black helicopters instead of living in the real world.


  4. The idea of spying on every single Internet search has not yet ripened. But give it time, though. The next administration (the likely one) is already carefully plotting to destroy free speech by banning it on the radio. Give them time, and they’ll ban “hate” speech on the Internet, too (and THEY will define “hate” as opposing their agenda.)


  5. there is good stuff on the EFF and ACLU site on surveillance. aside from jumping on random computers anonymously there is no privacy anymore.


  6. We have a few digital privacy tips on our website. regarding Bluetooth, GPS units, and choice of electronic devices from a privacy standpoint.

    Don’t contribute to “Big Brother” AKA The Surveillance State, by using your own money to purchase and use a device that is poorly designed when it comes to personal privacy. The NSA and other agencies will still track you passively, so far and as deep as their budget and infrastructure allows them. “The Surveillance State” can not afford to put microphones and cameras everywhere you go; but they can quite easily, and quite inexpensively spy on you, and all the people around you through the “shiny, happy, little devices” that you voluntarily carry nearly everywhere with you, almost every single day of your adult life. Your cell phone has “Big Brother” on the “other end” 24-7 don’t ever forget that!


  7. AN OPEN LETTER TO TESLA MOTORS: (Public Response Required!)

    Elon Musk
    Tesla Motors
    3500 Deer Creek
    Palo Alto, CA 94304
    (650) 681-5000


    Dear Mr. Musk and The Tesla Board of Directors:

    Recently; Numerous ex-Tesla staff and contractors, former suppliers, federal investigators, investigative reporters, investors and ex-partners of Tesla Motors have provided facts about Tesla Motors which are disturbing to the public, Congress, and the market. Please provide clarification of the following charges and concerns in order to resolve outstanding issues between the public and Tesla Motors :

    – Are Tesla and Google, essentially, the same entity by virtue of the same investors, agenda and stock market manipulations?

    – When damaging news about Tesla emerges, do Tesla and Google investors place multiple stock-buy orders from a multi-billion dollar slush fund in order to make it appear that individual outside investors are excited by Tesla when, in fact, it is only a small internal group of investors “pumping the market”?

    – It is said that the Tesla Model S has the most surveillance devices to watch, track, listen-to and broadcast the activities of the occupants, built into it than any other car in the world. Elon Musk has personally told reporters that his cars constantly watch the driver and occupants. Why is that? Why are Tesla and Google obsessed with spying on the public?

    – Elon Musk is on public record telling the news media that, after careful research, the NUMMI plant in Fremont California would be a very bad choice for Tesla? Why did that suddenly change? What participation did Senator Dianne Feinstein and her husband’s real estate Company CBRE have on that decision and the award of the loan to Tesla? Why do Senator Feinsteins staff now work for Tesla? What political support or funding did Tesla or Google provide to any related political officials?

    – From 2008 to 2010 numerous competing electric car companies have charged that Tesla Motors placed Tesla Motors “moles” inside of their companies to intelligence-gather and cause disruption. Is that true?

    – Google and Tesla motors share the same venture capital investor groups and alliances. Numerous expert at Tech-Crunch, Valleywag and other industry journals have published articles about the fact that those VC’s actively collude with each other to lock competing technologies and companies out of the market and create business monopolies. Did Tesla investors and associates participate in such activities? If so, would that not be a violation of SEC laws?

    – Did Tesla and/or Google reward certain politicians with campaign funding, web promotion, revolving door jobs for staff, and other incentives, in exchange for “hot-tracking” State and Federal taxpayer money for Tesla Motors?

    – While other companies built consumer priced electric cars before and during Tesla’s existence, why did Tesla choose to build an unaffordable car and position the marketing of it to “the 1%” when the money for that car came from the 99% taxpayers?

    – Numerous cities were told that they would have the Tesla car factory and then they stated, or sued Tesla, saying Tesla acted “in bad faith” and “used false and misleading information” to induce them to provide assurances which were used to pump the stock market. Why did Tesla lead so many cities on?

    – The factory that builds your batteries and the U.S. Government states, in their formal technical documents, that when Tesla batteries are on fire they emit lethal, brain-damaging, carcinogenic, liver, lung and DNA damaging fumes and smoke. Why do you not inform the public of this danger in your literature?

    – Lithium ion production kills and terminally sickens workers overseas. Multiple Tesla workers have been burned alive at your factory. OSHA has launched an investigation. What have you done to prevent the accidental and long term injuries to your staff and contractors?

    – Bernard Tse, and other main Tesla Engineering staff including: electric engineer Doug Bourn, electrical engineer Andrew Ingram, Brian M. Finn, senior manager of interactive electronics and George Blankenship; while investigating battery purchases for Tesla Motors, received numerous white-papers and technical documents from LG Chem, Panasonic and the U.S. D.O.E and vast numbers of other battery-makers which specifically stated that lithium-ion batteries would be “stressed” and “likely to combust” when used in the configuration which Tesla intended. Why then did Tesla still use them? What effect did the mass ownership of lithium ion mining and manufacturing resources by Tesla and Google investors have on the decision to use lithium ion?

    – Is it not a fact that a majority of your cars have been sold to your own investors or associates who act as “fluffers” against any bad PR?

    – Elon MUsk is on public record stating that, at the time of application for the DOE loan Tesla was on the verge of bankruptcy. The DOE loan was mandated under a Federal law known as Section 136. This law stated that no car company could receive money if it was on the verge of bankruptcy. Past accountants of Tesla have stated that Tesla was on the verge of bankruptcy at the time of the loan application. Numerous Tesla staff and contractors have verified this. Did Tesla commit a felony and acquire “unfair advantage” per the GAO?

    – Relative to the number of cars sold, why has Tesla had so many Tesla drunk driver related crashes, deaths and homicides. Why are Tesla drivers killing innocent pedestrians simply because the Tesla’s “smell bad”.?

    – Psychographic, demographic and marketing studies have been published showing that Tesla drivers have a higher-than-average inclination towards drugs, strange sexual behavior and risk. Could this account for the number of Tesla crashes and deaths?

    – Is it true that safety testing was done on Tesla cars without fully charged batteries and in a moisture-locked environment because Tesla staff knew that fully charged batteries and moisture in a crash WOULD cause a firey explosion, as they already have?

    – Is it not a fact that Google deletes, or hides any bad PR about Tesla on it’s network? Would this be considered stock market manipulation in violation of SEC laws?

    – Numerous periodicals, including Valleywag, document the fact that Elon Musk sends spy emails to his employees, each with a few words changed in order to track them and see who might reveal anything damaging to regulators?

    – Who are all of the property holders and lease-owners of the Tesla and Solyndra, past and current, real-estate?

    – According to DOE staff, who were at DOE when the Tesla application was submitted, nothing that Tesla submitted was ever built by Tesla. In fact, these staff state that the vehicle that Tesla eventually sold was not even designed or engineered when Tesla was approved for the loan money, contrary to the Section 136 law requirement. They say that Tesla took the money and THEN hired people to figure out what they were going to do with it. As shown in the DOE files, the engineering of the shipping Tesla cars has no element that was submitted to DOE. Is that true?

    – Elon Musks wives and founders have filed lawsuits and made public statements that he is a fraud and coerced them into participation. Is it proper feduciary practice to allow Mr. Musk to continue with the company?

    – Why did Tesla not have to pay the cash participation fee that the Section 136 law said everybody had to pay? Tesla staff stated, at numerous documented Silicon Valley open meetings that they got a “special applicant participation waiver”. Why did Tesla get that waiver?

    – Did Tesla Motors provide falsified information in order to acquire it’s Federal funding?

    – Did Tesla Motors provide falsified information in order to acquire it’s Federal waivers, tax deferrals, credits and discounts?

    – Kleiner Perkins and certain silicon valley VC’s, all investors in a number of DOE “winners” (including Tesla, Fisker, Solyndra, A123 and others), organized meetings with a Dmitry Medvedev and other men known by the State Department, CIA, FBI and federal investigators to be involved in Russian mobsterism and then Ener1, Severstal and A123, dark-money funded and run by billionaires (many of whom own lithium mining interests) known by the State Department, the CIA and federal investigators to be involved in Russian mobsterism, were awarded taxpayer funds by Steven Chu, who was nominated by Kleiner Perkins. Was any of this a conflict of interest?

    – Why is the only company to receive California State real estate exclusives, exclusive tax waivers, credits and stock enhancers and free rides on taxpayer backs also the same company who’s investors were the largest funders of certain State officials?

    – Federal communications monitoring of text, voice and email communications of certain highly placed Senators, lobbyists and venture capitalists from 2005 to today should be made available to ALL federal criminal investigators. Have they been? Are one or more Senators blocking this effort because they are compromised?

    – Why have so many fraud lawsuits been filed against Elon Musk and Tesla Motors?

    – The head of the NHTSA Tesla investigation quit because of increased scrutiny. The facts, such as these, demonstrate that Tesla and Fisker never should have passed any NHTSA safety review. How can the public be assured that ongoing NHTSA investigations regarding Tesla will not be rigged?

    – Did Tesla Motors provide falsified information in order to acquire it’s State funding?

    – Did Tesla Motors provide falsified information in order to acquire it’s State waivers, tax deferrals, credits and discounts?

    – Did Tesla investors bribe, or influence Congress people?

    – Did Tesla staff or owners investors bribe, or influence Congress people?

    – Did Tesla staff, owners or investors provider misleading information to investors?

    – Was there a conflict of interest between Department of Energy staff and Tesla owners, investors or staff?

    – Was there a conflict of interest between White House staff and Tesla owners, investors or staff?

    – Was there a conflict of interest between Senate staff and Tesla owners, investors or staff?

    – Did Tesla Motors use taxpayer money to hire off-shore staff?

    – Marketing sales staff from the ad agencies for 60 Minutes, Consumer Reports, GQ, Fortune and other mainstream periodicals have stated that Elon Musk purchased “puff piece” stories about himself in those broadcasts and that none of those stories were internally generated. Is it good feduciary practice for an executive to use corporate resources for personal glorification?

    – Did Tesla Motors use taxpayer money to purchase supplies offshore that could have been purchased in the United States?

    – Did Tesla Motors participate in a market rigging scam to rig lithium ion purchasing for its investors?

    – Did Tesla Motors participate in a market rigging scam to rig the electric car market for its investors?

    – Did Tesla Motors staff, or owners, sabotage competitors?

    – Did Tesla Motors staff, owners or investors exchange campaign funding quid pro quo for business financing?

    – Did Silicon Valley companies, owned by Tesla investors and campaign financiers, use internet technology to falsify information to the public in order to manipulate stock market perceptions in violation of SEC, RICO, and various other laws?

    – Did Tesla Motors lie about the safety metrics of its lithium ion battery system?

    – Was Tesla Motors holding safety metric data in its files which differed fully from the safety metrics data it provided to investors and NHTSA?

    – Did Tesla Motors violate securities law by using false information to acquire a federal loan which it then used to falsify its stock metrics in order to “pump” it’s stock?

    – Did Deloitte accounting firm conspire with Tesla to manipulate market metrics in violation of RICO Statutes and did that firm manipulate Department of Energy review data on Tesla’s behalf?

    – A U.S. Senator officiated at the opening of the Tesla Nummi plant and lobbied for Tesla’s tax waivers, credits, acquisition of NUMMI and discounts and then that U.S. Senator had their staff work in Tesla’s offices. Is it a conflict of interest that this senator received campaign funding and this senator’s family received real estate deals from the Tesla and, (next door to Tesla), Solyndra real estate deals?

    – Did Welles Fargo conspire with Tesla to manipulate market metrics in violation of RICO Statutes?

    – Did Goldman Sachs conspire with Tesla to manipulate market metrics in violation of RICO Statutes?

    – Were Department of Energy staff manipulating Tesla funding data in order to favor Tesla and it’s campaign funding investors in violation of RICO Statutes?

    – Were Department of Energy staff manipulating Tesla funding data in order to disfavor Tesla competitors and competitors to it’s campaign funding investors in violation of RICO Statutes?

    – Did Tesla owners, staff or investors attempt to delay federal investigations and indictments by asserting influence in violation of RICO Statutes and numerous other laws?

    – Documents sgow there have been more Tesla fires that actually occurred than Tesla has reported in the media. How many actual Tesla factory fires, test car fires and Tesla battery fires have actually occurred?

    – Please provide an identification matrix showing campaign backers who were lithium ion investors who had had their contacts exert influence over NHTSA decisions regarding Tesla?

    – The Secretary of energy was friends with all of your investors. We have been unable to find the name of even one person from OPM and Congressional nomination file wrapper for Steven Chu’s nomination, who Chu did not later give DOE $$ or perks to. Why is that?

    – The U.S. Post Office, The TSA, The DOE, The GAO, Panasonic and over 100 of the leading technical companies in the world say lithium ion batteries can spontaneously explode. WHy do you not disclose this to your buyers in your literature?

    – The Tesla can blow-up from it’s charger and/or it’s batteries. Are there other dangers that have also not been disclosed?

    – Is Tesla operating in violation of the patents of any other company?

    – By Elon MUsk’s own admission, at the time of the DOE loan application all of the car designs were $100,000.00, PER CAR, over budget and they had no final design for a factory production run DFM. How could Tesla have gotten the loan with the worst debt ratio, the least engineering, the greatest financial risk and the least collateral of any applicant?

    – Tesla lobbyists worked with Rahm Emanuel in the White House, to arrange their loan deal. Rahm Emanuals Senior Finance Aide was recently arrested for bribes, kickbacks, corruption and money Laundering. Does this call your dealings into question?

    – Rolls-Royce Holdings said the U.K.’s Serious Fraud Office has opened a formal investigation into bribery and corruption of government officials for cars for the 1%. Does this worry you?

    – The NHTSA said that Elon Musk lied about Fire Safety Review approval and request for recall. Should we trust Elon Musk?

    – Tesla got another $34 MILLION of our tax money in exclusive campaign finance kickbacks for billionaires from the State of California. Why did Tesla billionaires need a few million of our tax money in a recession when people have no jobs?

    – The German Tesla “Safety Review” was exposed as “Sham” in that they conducted no safety review and were just told to “pass the car” by your bankers at Deutche Bank! Why did you not discvlose that the German’s conducted no testing of your battery system of any nature?

    – In Tesla’s own filed patent applications you state that your batteries WILL explode spontaneously and kill and injure people and burn down their homes. Why did you not disclose this in buyers documentation?

    – Tesla is MORE likely to catch on fire than gasoline car”per Bloomberg & MIT. Why did you not disclose this?

    – Lithium Ion is “nearly impossible” to extinguish, “acts like solid rocket fuel” say firefighters. Tesla never supplied required CO2 fire extinguishers to cars. Why not?

    – Federal Investigators say you are using “exploding flashlight batteries that were never intended to be used in cars, in improperly shielded box” to power car instead of commercial energy storage technology. 85% less lithium crash protection on Tesla than ANY OTHER ELECTRIC CAR. All other companies had to recall EXCEPT Tesla. Why not?

    – Over 150 defects and problems per model about the Tesla have been documented on user-forums and in the press including: “Doors lock you in and out. Bad if car on fire!”; “George Clooney Rips Tesla: ‘Why Am I Always Stuck On The Side Of The F*cking Road?”; “Tesla “Satisfaction” survey authored by it’s own investors/fanboys”; “Tesla seat vibration causes Anal Itching!”;
    “VAMPIRE POWER DEFECT slams entire Tesla Model S fleet!”; “Numerous defects documented by owners online.” When the NUMMI factory was in use by GM and Toyota only 5 defects per model car produced there occured. Even after you bought brand new robots, why did the Tesla cars get worse in a pre-configured factory with billions of dollars of past car preparation?

    Thank you for your consideration. We look forward to your public response to clarify these issues.


    The American Independent Auto Association
    The Friends of Gary Conley
    Former Staff- Bright Automotive
    The Ingram Fund
    Brett Winston
    Target News Team
    Anton Westerly