Tuesday, May 28, 2024

‘Obviously Illegal:’ Elon Musk Slams IBM Chief Arvind Krishna Over Leaked Video On Diversity-Focused Hiring Practices


International Business Machines, Corp.’s (NYSE:IBM) CEO Arvind Krishna faced criticism for alleged double standards from Tesla CEO Elon Musk after a leaked video revealed that Krishna pressured executives to implement discriminatory practices in the hiring process.

What Happened: In the leaked video shared by journalist James O’Keefe on X, Krishna, of Indian origin, stated that executives at IBM who failed to hire sufficient Black or Hispanic candidates or hired too many Asians would lose their bonuses. 

The internal meeting, attended by IBM unit Red Hat’s Chairman Paul Cormier and Corporate Communications Director Allison Showalter, according to O’Keefe, was provided by a company insider.

Cormier mentioned that multiple leaders at Red Hat, present for the last year or more, were no longer with the company for not complying with the “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion” (DEI) standards set by the company.

In response, Krishna stated, “We take underrepresented and gender. You’ve got to move both forward by a percentage point. That leads to a plus on your bonus.” He added, “By the way, if you lose, you lose part of your bonus.”

O’Keefe noted in the post that “Title VII of the Civil Rights Act” makes it illegal for employers to discriminate based on race in the workplace.

Musk commented on the post, stating, “Extremely concerning and obviously illegal.”

Why It Matters: The alleged double standards employed by IBM drew criticism, with Babylon Bee owner Seth Dhillon noting that Big Blue pulled ads from X, citing “zero tolerance for hate speech and discrimination,” while internally penalizing individuals who didn’t discriminate enough.

Musk joined the conversation, saying, “How ironic.”

It’s worth noting that Musk’s endorsement of an anti-Semitic post led to a controversy, causing several advertisers, including Apple, to withdraw their ads from the platform. During the New York Times DealBook Summit following the controversy, Musk suggested that he wasn’t bothered by it.

Incidentally, earlier this year, the Department of Justice sued Musk-owned SpaceX for allegedly discriminating against asylees[a] and refugees in hiring.

[a] https://www.benzinga.com/government/23/08/34028565/doj-sues-elon-musks-spacex-for-alleged-hiring-discrimination

Source: CORE, Wikipedia

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