Rishi Sunak: The Prime Minister makes another ‘out of touch’ remark

Rishi Sunak was interviewing Elon Musk about AI when he decided to make another yet controversial and belittling remark.

Rishi Sunak Elon Musk out of touch
© Bloomberg / GETTY IMAGES
Rishi Sunak Elon Musk out of touch

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s mandate has been filled with controversy. Currently, November 2023, Sunak is in the middle of the COVID inquiry for which he is claiming that he cannot surrender his Whatsapp messages.

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Moreover, many of his policies have been controversial, just like his views on issues such as trans rights. While he has only been in office for a year, Sunak has been a member of the conservative for several years. He ran for office for the first time in 2014 and since then has held many positions. In 2019 he joined Boris Johnson’s administration as Chief Secretary of the Treasury. He then transitioned to be Chancellor of the Exchequer and then Prime Minister in 2022.

The fact that he has enjoyed positions of power and wealth, has made him appear as out of touch. A recent remark is strengthening this perception of him.

Rishi Sunak meets Elon Musk

On 1 and 2 November 2023, the AI Safety Summit took place in London. According to the government this summit had two major objectives: ‘consider the risks of AI, especially at the frontier of development’ and ‘discuss how they can be mitigated through internationally coordinated action’.

The Summit welcomed world leaders, AI companies and leaders and researchers in order to understand the growing impact and threats that AI brings. Part of the summit was a conversation between Prime Minister Sunak and X owner Elon Musk.

A conversation that was quickly derailed by Sunak’s ‘out of touch’ comments. Indeed, while talking to the billionaire, Huffington Post reports that Sunak expressed a specific wish. He stated that he wanted people to be :

unafraid to give up the security of a regular paycheck to go and start something and be comfortable with failure

Instant backlash

Of course reactions to his statement came quickly. Huffington Post reports that Labour leaders immediately labelled him ‘out of touch’.

Shadow paymaster general Jonathan Ashworth even said:

After 13 years of the Tories, the public are enduring the worst cost of living crisis in memory and he is spending his time telling Elon Musk that he wishes they would give up their jobs and be ready to fail.
He hasn’t got a clue.

On X, reactions have also been less than positive. Users said:

Needs to lead by example, resign and start a start up. Hopefully it will be better than his wife's failed start ups using our money.
That’s probably much easier to do if you’re a billionaire already…
Or just do what Sunak did and marry someone with a rich family
Why doesn't he call an election, see if he's comfortable with taking a risk ?

During the same chat, Elon Musk and Sunak also discussed the fact that AI was going to render jobs useless. He said:

We are seeing the most disruptive force in history here (...) There will come a point where no job is needed - you can have a job if you want one for personal satisfaction but AI will do everything.

Read more:

‘Risk of extinction’: Rishi Sunak issues warning on the future of humanity and it's terrifying

Why has Rishi Sunak been reported to the police?

Rishi Sunak and Nadine Dorries: Here's when their famous feud first started


BBC News: Elon Musk tells Rishi Sunak AI will put an end to work

Huffington Post: Rishi Sunak Says People Should Be Willing To Give Up 'The Security Of A Regular Paycheck'


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