stop the protests from resuming.

That distrust is reflected in lower-than-expected participation in a citywide vaccination campaign, with residents especially skeptical of the Chinese-made Sinovac vaccine. On Monday, the government said it was expanding eligibility to everyone 30 and older to accelerate vaccination efforts.

Confusion, distrust and misinformation on social media have contributed to accusations of unequal treatment in quarantine decisions. Parents asked why some children were allowed to quarantine at home or in hotels instead of in government facilities; health officials say it depends on their degree of exposure to the virus.

The case of a couple working at the U.S. Consulate who tested positive for the virus but were allowed to bring their two children with them to the hospital caused further consternation and complaints of exceptional treatment. Mrs. Lam said the decision had been made based on the couple’s family circumstances and not their status as consular employees.

“Everybody is treated equal before the law and in terms of our epidemic control measures, regardless of their race, their status, their identity, whether they are more resourceful or less resourceful,” she said on Tuesday. “This is a fundamental principle in Hong Kong and we will abide by that principle.”

Though officials did relent on quarantine for some children, no such reversal came for members of the playgroup used by the Worley family. One of them, Jennifer Choi, is spending seven nights in a government center with her 13-month-old daughter.

Like the Worleys, Ms. Choi, who is from South Korea, said she had been careful to follow social-distancing rules. Her daughter often wears a face shield even though Hong Kong does not require masks for children under the age of 2.

So it was frustrating for her and other parents when officials cited the presence of maskless babies in the group as one reason all eight of them and their caregivers were being sent to government quarantine.

“What kind of logic is that?” Ms. Choi said.

Tiffany May contributed reporting.

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Amazon Versus Unions

A labor union’s effort to organize about 5,800 Amazon workers in Bessemer, Ala., has turned into a national story. The workers are now voting whether to join the union, in an election that runs through March 29.

I asked Noam Scheiber, who covers workplace issues for The Times, to explain what’s going on. Our conversation follows.

David: Why has this one local union election become such a big deal?

Noam: Amazon is the second-largest private employer in the U.S. In the more than 25 years since its founding, the company has successfully resisted unionization at all of its U.S. facilities, which now number in the hundreds. But labor leaders believe that a single high-profile success will reverberate across the country.

There are already signs that they may be right. Some nonunionized Amazon workers on Staten Island walked off the job last year, to protest pandemic working conditions. And the union that’s trying to organize the workers in Alabama — the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union — says it has received more than 1,000 inquiries from other Amazon workers since this campaign started.

some justification.

Amazon exerts a lot of influence over working conditions for tens of millions of other workers. When Amazon enters an industry, it often forces the competition to adopt similar labor practices — partly on pay, but also squeezing efficiency out of workers. Consider, for example, that shares of Walmart, Target, Kroger and Costco swooned after Amazon announced its acquisition of Whole Foods back in 2017.

Amazon and the union have made competing claims about whether the jobs already come with good wages and benefits. Can you help us understand them?

The company typically pays rank-and-file warehouse workers between $15 and $20 per hour and offers health care and retirement benefits. For a full-time worker, that translates into about $700 a week. Amazon touts its compensation package as “industry-leading,” though most of its workers are likely earning well below the national weekly median of about $1,000 for full-time workers.

tends to be higher than for nonunion workers, even when you control for factors like education and experience. But I suspect Amazon will likely raise wages even if the union loses, because credible threats of unionization tend to drive up wages even at nonunion companies.

Joe Biden offer stronger pro-union words than any president in decades — and then see Marco Rubio, a conservative Republican, also encourage the Bessemer workers to join a union. Is it possible that labor unions are on the verge of growing again?

There’s an element of social contagion here, in which successful activism by some workers can inspire others. We saw that during the teacher walkouts that began in West Virginia in 2018 and quickly spread to Oklahoma, Kentucky and Arizona. The same has recently happened in digital media and among white-collar tech workers.

That said, it’s hard to believe we’ll see a reversal in the decades-long decline in unionization, as opposed to a slowing of the decline, absent a major change in U.S. labor law. The current law gives employers enormous advantages in a union campaign. They can subject workers to a barrage of anti-union rhetoric, through mandatory meetings, emails, signage. Unions have no comparable way of getting their message out. And the law rarely results in more than a slap on the wrist for employers that fire workers for supporting a union.

What would “a major change in U.S. labor law” look like?

Something along the lines of the PRO Act that the House just passed, which would dramatically increase the penalties for retaliating against workers who organize. Or card check, which would allow workers to unionize if a majority sign cards, allowing them to bypass a contentious election like this one.

Another approach would be sectoral bargaining, in which a union could bargain with all the major employers in an industry by getting, say, 10 to 20 percent of the industry’s workers to sign cards. That would diminish the incentive of any one employer to fight a union campaign out of a fear of competitive disadvantage. Germany, France and Norway use sectoral bargaining.

won the Pritzker Prize, architecture’s highest honor, for turning old structures into new affordable housing.

  • Eight migrants died in a car crash in Texas near the Mexican border. A similar accident happened two weeks ago in California.

  • The U.S. federal minimum wage is $7.25 an hour. What should it be?

    Morning Reads

    Cody’s World: The key to a healthy lifestyle? For The Times’s Amanda Hess, it’s a Peloton instructor who looks “like a piece of Disney fan art.”

    DealBook: Were the airline buyouts necessary?

    Lives Lived: In 1976, the British wine expert Steven Spurrier organized a blind tasting to compare French and Californian wines. The result revolutionized the industry. Spurrier died at 79.

    “Have you ever wanted to control my life?” a 15-year-old TikToker with 3.3 million followers asked in a recent online video. He then asked his fans what game he should play with friends — dodgeball or catch — and 78 percent chose dodgeball. Fans have also voted on what he should watch, what video games he should play and what to name his pet hamster.

    Taylor Lorenz, a Times tech reporter, writes. One of those companies is NewNew, where fans pay to vote in polls, like the dodgeball one, to determine a creator’s daily choices. Five votes cost $4.99.

    “It doesn’t matter how boring you think you are, there’s someone out there who would find your life interesting to the point that they’re willing to pay,” NewNew’s founder, Courtne Smith, said.

    Influencers are joining such platforms for the promise of diversification, Taylor writes, leaving them less beholden to a the ever-changing algorithms and pay structures of a few social media giants.

    play online.

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    Sarah Everard Vigil: Anger Churns Over Police Tactics at Gathering in London

    After talks between the group running the vigil, Reclaim These Streets, and the police proved fruitless, the organizers went to the courts to try to win permission for the event.

    When the High Court declined to intervene, Reclaim These Streets canceled the gathering. Nonetheless, crowds arrived at the park throughout the day, with visitors including Prince William’s wife, the Duchess of Cambridge, who was among many to lay flowers at a makeshift tribute around a bandstand.

    A turning point appeared to come when people started to make speeches, prompting the police to move in and break up the gathering. Presumably, this was because the event was turning from a vigil, which the police seemed willing to tolerate, to a demonstration, which they were not.

    Adam Wagner, a human rights lawyer who advised Reclaim These Streets, said, “The police created the situation that allowed it to become an unruly disorganized mess, and then felt they had to carry out enforcement.” He added that in failing to reach an agreement with the group to cooperate in organizing the event and in that way manage those who wanted to attend the vigil, the opportunity was lost to exclude others, such as anti-lockdown protesters.

    In a statement on Tuesday, Reclaim These Streets said it had lost confidence in Ms. Dick, the Metropolitan Police Commissioner, who the group said had granted them a meeting on Monday of just 15 minutes. “We pressed the commissioner for a clear answer on what an acceptable form of vigil would be under the legislation and she failed to provide an answer,” the statement noted, adding that the actions of the police “were putting the safety of women exercising their right to protest at risk.”

    With no written constitution, rights to protest rely in Britain on a general human rights law and on an obligation on the police to use force proportionately. But critics of the coronavirus rules note that the speed with which the regulations were passed through Parliament has left a legal jumble.

    Pippa Woodrow, another lawyer advising Reclaim These Streets, said, “A lack of clarity has been a real issue from the outset, and that might have been understandable at the beginning but we are now a year into this and our laws are still no better.” Having stopped some protests, the police seemed to feel that they would have looked inconsistent if they had let this vigil go ahead, she added.

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    Myanmar Authorities Declare Martial Law in Parts of Country’s Largest City

    YANGON, Myanmar — Myanmar’s ruling junta has declared martial law in six townships in Yangon, the country’s largest city, after security forces killed dozens of protesters over the weekend in an increasingly lethal crackdown on resistance to a military coup last month.

    The state broadcaster MRTV said Monday that the Yangon townships of North Dagon, South Dagon, Dagon Seikkan and North Okkalapa had been put under martial law. An initial announcement was made late Sunday saying two other townships — Hlaing Thar Yar and neighboring Shwepyitha — were being placed under martial law.

    At least 38 people were killed Sunday and dozens were injured in one of the deadliest days of the crackdown on protesters, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, an independent group tracking the violence. Several estimates from other sources gave higher figures.

    Complicating efforts to organize new protests as well as media coverage of the crisis, mobile internet service has been cut, though access is still available through fixed broadband connections. Mobile data service has been used to stream live video coverage of protests, often showing security forces attacking demonstrators.

    The blockage of internet service forced postponement of a court hearing in the capital, Naypyidaw, for Myanmar’s detained leader, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, who was supposed to take part via a video conference, said her lawyer, Khin Maung Zaw.

    Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi and President Win Myint were detained during the Feb. 1 military takeover, and have been charged with several criminal offenses that their supporters believe are politically motivated to keep them locked up.

    Since the takeover six weeks ago, Myanmar has been under a nationwide state of emergency, with its civilian leaders ousted and detained, and military leaders in charge of all government. But Sunday’s announcement was the first use of martial law since the coup and suggested more direct military control of security, instead of local police.

    The announcement said that the State Administrative Council acted to enhance security and restore law and order, and that the Yangon regional commander has been entrusted with administrative, judicial and military powers in the area under his command. The orders cover six of Yangon’s 33 townships, all of which have suffered major violence in recent days.

    Thirty-four of the deaths were in Yangon. Video from Hlaing Thar Yar township showed people running away after gunfire was heard at nighttime. Those fleeing carried one injured person and tried to revive two others, one who seemed to be dead or dying, the footage from the independent Democratic Voice of Burma showed.

    Hlaing Thar Yar was the location of 22 civilian deaths Sunday, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, which said that more than a dozen civilians were wounded and described a large number of junta forces engaged in the township.

    Four other deaths were reported in the cities of Bago, Mandalay, and Hpakant, according to the association and local media.

    In a new tactic, demonstrators used the cover of darkness to hold mass candlelight vigils in various parts of Yangon over the weekend, including some that took place after 8 p.m., when a curfew imposed by authorities starts.

    The protest movement has been grounded in nonviolent civil disobedience, with marches and general strikes among its main features.

    The Assistance Association for Political Prisoners’ tally of victims of the crackdown raised the number of civilians killed by security forces since the coup to over 100. Confirmation of the number of casualties is nearly impossible due to the security situation and a crackdown on independent media in Myanmar, but various groups have compiled tallies with similar figures.

    The actual death toll is likely higher, as police apparently have seized some bodies, and some victims have had serious gunshot wounds that medical staff at makeshift clinics would be hard-pressed to treat. Many hospitals are occupied by security forces, and as a result are boycotted by medical personnel and shunned by protesters.

    Police have also aggressively patrolled residential neighborhoods at night, firing into the air and setting off stun grenades as an intimidation tactic. They have also taken people from their homes in targeted raids with minimal resistance. In at least two known cases, the detainees died in custody within hours of being hauled away.

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    U.K. Policing Bill Examined After Sarah Everard Vigil

    LONDON — Prime Minister Boris Johnson is meeting with law enforcement officials on Monday after the London police drew widespread criticism for the handling of a vigil on Saturday after the killing of a 33-year-old woman. The fallout comes as a proposed police bill that would grant more powers to control protests in Britain is set to be debated in Parliament this week and faces renewed scrutiny from opposition lawmakers and rights groups.

    An investigation is getting underway into the policing of a vigil in South London on Saturday night for Sarah Everard, 33, whose killing touched off a national discussion over misogyny and violence. The vigil had been declared unlawful because of coronavirus restrictions, a move denounced by rights groups, and officers from the Metropolitan Police, the main London force, clashed with some attendees.

    Mr. Johnson was scheduled to meet on Monday with ministers, senior police officers and prosecutors to discuss steps to tighten safety on streets for women and girls.

    “Like everyone who saw it, I was deeply concerned about the footage from Clapham Common on Saturday night,” Mr. Johnson said, referring to the part of South London where Ms. Everard disappeared and where the vigil was held.

    said on Sunday that a review would be good for “public confidence,” but resisted calls from some for her resignation and defended her officers, citing concerns over the coronavirus.

    “Unlawful gatherings are unlawful gatherings,” she said. “Officers have to take action if people are putting themselves massively at risk.”

    David Lammy, a Labour lawmaker who is the party’s justice spokesman, adding that the bill was “a mess, which could lead to lead to harsher penalties for damaging a statue than for attacking a woman.”

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    ‘March 4 Justice’: Thousands Turn Out in Australia

    MELBOURNE, Australia — Wearing black and holding signs reading “enough is enough,” thousands took to the streets across Australia on Monday to protest violence and discrimination against women, as a reckoning in the country’s halls of power sparked by multiple rape allegations continued to grow.

    The marches in at least 40 cities represented an outpouring of anger from women about a problem that has gone unaddressed for too long, said the organizers, who estimated that 110,000 people attended the demonstrations nationwide.

    With the next national election potentially coming as early as August, experts say it is something that the conservative government, which has come under stinging criticism for the way it has handled the allegations, ignores at its own peril.

    The public anger over violence against women mirrored sentiments on display in London last weekend. There, thousands joined protests over the killing of 33-year-old Sarah Everard, who disappeared while walking home at night earlier this month.

    allegation that she was raped in Parliament House in 2019 rocked the nation’s halls of power and prompted Monday’s marches, appeared at the Canberra protest. She said that there was a “horrible societal acceptance” of sexual violence in Australia.

    “My story was on the front page for the sole reason that it was a painful reminder to women that if it can happen in Parliament House, it can truly happen anywhere,” she said.

    saying on Twitter: “We have already come to the front door, now it’s up to the government to cross the threshold and come to us. We will not be meeting behind closed doors.”

    settled a defamation complaint and agreed to pay damages to Ms. Higgins after calling her a “lying cow.”

    “A government that’s been described as having a ‘women problem’ for several years is now really in trouble with women,” said Sarah Maddison, a politics professor at the University of Melbourne.

    “I can’t remember a time I’ve seen and personally experienced the level of distress women are experiencing now,” she said. “I think there’s something here with this level of distress that is producing quite an extraordinary moment in our politics.”

    Support for the Liberal Party has been slowly declining among women for years, said Sarah Cameron, a lecturer in politics at the University of Sydney, although it was not enough to stop the party from winning the last federal election in 2019. Dr. Cameron added that the party “ignores this trend at their peril.”

    In Sydney, organizers estimated that at least 10,000 people gathered in the central business district.

    There, Michael Bradley, the lawyer for a now-deceased woman who had said she was sexually assaulted in 1988 by a man who is currently a member of Parliament, called for reforming the justice system. Earlier this month, Attorney General Christian Porter, 50, confirmed that he was the subject of the allegation.

    statement of claim filed by his lawyers said that the article, which did not name Mr. Porter, made defamatory imputations.

    In an email statement, the ABC said it “will be defending the action.”

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    In Rage Over Sarah Everard Killing, ‘Women’s Bargain’ Is Put on Notice

    Perhaps it was because pandemic lockdowns have left women clinging to whatever is left of their access to public space. Perhaps it was because after more than three years of the #MeToo movement, the police and society are still telling women to sacrifice their liberties to purchase a little temporary safety.

    It all came to the surface when 33-year-old Sarah Everard, who disappeared as she walked home in London on March 3, was found dead a week later, after doing everything she was supposed to do. She took a longer route that was well-lit and populated. She wore bright clothes and shoes she could run in. She checked in with her boyfriend to let him know when she was leaving. But that was not enough to save her life.

    So the response from British women to reports that the police were going door to door telling women in the South London neighborhood where she disappeared to stay inside for their own safety became an outpouring of rage and frustration.

    @metpoliceuk really do want women off the streets don’t they?” Anne Lawtey, 64, wrote on Twitter after organizers announced the cancellation of the gathering. She was shocked, she said in a telephone interview, that it had been shut down. “We can’t have a vigil? People standing still, in a park, wearing masks?”

    A huge crowd turned out anyway, carrying candles and bouquets, crocus bulbs in glass jars and flats of pansy seedlings to add to the pile of blooms.

    With no audio equipment, women climbed on the Victorian bandstand that had become a makeshift memorial and used an Occupy Wall Street-style human microphone: The crowd repeated what was said so that it could be heard at the back.

    working paper from Girija Borker, a researcher at the World Bank, found that women in India were willing to go to far worse colleges, and pay more tuition, in order to avoid harassment or abuse on their daily commutes to classes. The impact of that “choice” on one woman can be hard to measure — but among the thousands she documented in her research, it can be expected to have an effect on earnings, economic power and social mobility.

    wrote on Twitter, adding, “4pm. New Scotland Yard.”

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    Myanmar Coup Protests Show No Sign of Waning, Despite Killings

    Soldiers and police officers shot and killed at least 18 people in Myanmar over the weekend, as they pressed their campaign of attrition against protesters who have defied them in cities and towns across the country.

    Despite weeks of killings by the security forces, a nationwide civil-disobedience movement — which has paralyzed much of the economy as well as the government’s operations — shows no sign of waning, a month and a half after the Feb. 1 military coup that ousted the civilian leadership.

    “The world is upside down in Myanmar,” said U Tin Tun, who said he saw military personnel in the city of Mandalay commandeer an ambulance and drive off with a woman who had been shot in the head by a fellow soldier.

    “We must fight until we win,” said Mr. Tin Tun, 46. “The regime must step down. There is no place for any dictator here in Myanmar.”

    known as the Tatmadaw, has run the country for most of the past 60 years. For the majority of that time, it has battled rebel armies made up of members of ethnic minorities, who inhabit areas rich in jade, timber and other resources.

    the Nobel laureate Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, it continued to operate without civilian oversight. In 2017, it waged an internationally condemned campaign of ethnic cleansing against the Muslim Rohingya in western Myanmar, killing thousands and forcing more than 700,000 to flee to neighboring Bangladesh.

    Now, the military has brought similar tactics — and some of the same military units — to cities and towns around the country. Soldiers and police officers, who are also under the authority of the army’s top commander, have fired into homes and crowds of protesters, beaten demonstrators in the streets and arrested many hundreds of people, some whom were later tortured, victims and witnesses have said.

    the secretary of homeland security, Alejandro N. Mayorkas, using Myanmar’s former name. He said its citizens would be eligible to stay in the United States for 18 months.

    The weekend’s wave of killings began just before midnight on Friday, when a crowd of people gathered outside a police station in Yangon seeking the release of three brothers who had been seized from their home. The police opened fire, killing two men, relatives of the victims said.

    On Saturday, the killing continued with four more victims in Yangon, three in the town of Pyay and one in the town of Chauk. Both towns sit on the Irrawaddy River north of Yangon, Myanmar’s largest city.

    In Mandalay, the second-largest city, where the first major street protests against the coup were held on Feb. 4, four protesters were shot and killed by the security forces on Saturday, according to doctors who tried to treat the victims. A fifth death was confirmed by a relative of the victim.

    On Sunday, three protesters in Yangon were shot and killed, according to the clinic where their bodies were taken.

    In Mandalay on Saturday, after police officers began shooting at protesters, about two dozen students who had been demonstrating fled and took refuge in the nearby home of Daw Pyone, 49.

    Police officers and soldiers followed them there and confronted Ms. Pyone, said her daughter, Ma Tin Nilar San, who hid with the students under blankets and mosquito nets. When Ms. Pyone refused to give them up, Ms. Tin Nilar San said, a soldier shot her in the head from a few feet away.

    “I was crying in hiding and I was shaking because I was so afraid,” said Ms. Tin Nilar San, 28. “My mother gave birth to me by risking her life. But I could not save my mom’s life when she was in need and calling my name.”

    The soldiers began firing randomly inside the house, and most of the students came out of hiding, she said. Eighteen were arrested.

    After the police and soldiers left, Ms. Tin Nilar San said she and the remaining students carried her mother, who was still alive, to a nearby Buddhist monastery, where volunteer medics were treating wounded protesters.

    They put her in an ambulance. But before it could be driven away, about 20 soldiers and police officers arrived, said Mr. Tin Tun, who was coordinating emergency care at the monastery. They broke down the door of the monastery, and everyone fled or hid, he said.

    Mr. Tin Tun said he found a place to hide near the ambulance. He said he heard the soldiers say that Ms. Pyone appeared to have died, and that they should take her to a cemetery to be cremated.

    The soldiers then drove off in the ambulance, he said. Ms. Pyone has not been seen since. Family members, hoping she might have survived, have looked for her at a prison and at police and military hospitals, without success.

    “I cannot sleep, I cannot eat anything,” Ms. Tin Nilar San said. “I want my mother back. She is such a nice woman with a kind heart. She risked her life to save all the students hiding in our house.”

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    Jordan Hospital’s Oxygen Shortage Tied to at Least 7 Deaths

    At least seven people died at a hospital in Jordan on Saturday after it ran out of oxygen, according to Jordanian news reports, prompting an outcry in the kingdom, a visit to the hospital by King Abdullah II and the resignations of the country’s health minister and the hospital’s director.

    Officials said that all of the victims were being treated for the coronavirus and that they had died after an interruption of oxygen supply that lasted around an hour at a government hospital in Salt, northwest of Amman, the capital.

    Many countries across the world, including Mexico, Nigeria and Egypt, have faced oxygen supply shortages that have driven up the virus death toll. In Mexico, prices for oxygen have spiked, sales of oxygen tanks have thrived on the black market, and criminal groups have stolen them from hospitals. In Egypt, a New York Times investigation found that at least three patients had died of oxygen deprivation in a hospital that was running out of it earlier this year.

    Last month, more than 500,000 people infected with the coronavirus were in need of oxygen every day, according to the World Health Organization, which identified up to 20 low- and middle-income countries that were in urgent need of oxygen supplies, including Malawi, Nigeria and Afghanistan. But there have also been fears that the world’s oxygen supply would be unable to meet the needs of all of those who need it, which include not only Covid-19 patients but also those being treated for many other diseases.

    Al-Mamlaka TV.

    Dozens of demonstrators gathered in front of the hospital to protest against the shortage of oxygen, including relatives of victims, according to news reports and photographs, and a video circulating online showed the king, in military fatigues, speaking with what appeared to be an official at the hospital as similarly clad members of his entourage held back a surging crowd.

    Jordan, a country of 10 million people, has reported over 5,200 Covid-19 deaths, according to a count by The Times. On Friday, it received a first shipment of 144,000 doses of the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine.

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    China Turns to Elon Musk as Technology Dreams Sour

    China is having its techlash moment.

    The country’s internet giants, once celebrated as engines of economic vitality, are now scorned for exploiting user data, abusing workers and squelching innovation. Jack Ma, co-founder of the e-commerce titan Alibaba, is a fallen idol, with his companies under government scrutiny for the ways they have secured their grip over the world’s second-largest economy.

    But there is one tech figure who has managed to keep the Chinese public in his thrall, whose mix of impish bomb-throwing and captain-of-industry bravado seems tailor-made for this time of dashed dreams and disillusionment: Elon Musk.

    “He can fight the establishment and become the richest man on earth — and avoid getting beaten down in the process,” said Jane Zhang, the founder and chief executive of ShellPay, a blockchain company in Shanghai. “He’s everybody’s hope.”

    fiery blast — China cannot get enough of Mr. Musk. Tesla’s electric cars are big sellers in the country, and the government’s growing space ambitions have spawned a community of fans who track SpaceX’s every launch.

    trailblazer or a fraud, and examining everything from his upbringing to his taste in Beijing hot pot joints. Start-up founders swear by his belief in “first-principles thinking,” which looks for solutions by examining problems at their most fundamental level. A stack of books by Chinese authors promises to reveal the secrets of the “Silicon Valley Iron Man,” which is the nickname that seems to have stuck in China, not King of Mars or Rocket Man.

    In a long thread about Mr. Musk on the question-and-answer site Zhihu, a user named Moonshake writes that most people start out full of hope but gradually accept the “mediocrity” that is their fate.

    “Only a superman like Musk can move past the endless mediocrity and toward the infinite, to see the magnificence of the universe,” Moonshake writes.

    Another user in the same thread says he named his son Elon to express his admiration. The user did not reply to a message seeking further comment.

    claimed credit. (Mr. Musk’s reaction to the news — “Well, back to work …” — was liked 22,000 times on the Chinese social platform Weibo.)

    Later that month, as Mr. Musk endorsed the run-up in GameStop shares, many in China were riveted, drawn to the drama by the same distrust of big financial institutions.

    “Occupy Wall Street could never be copied in China,” said Suji Yan, an entrepreneur and investor in Shanghai. To do that, “you’d have go on the streets,” he said. Buying protest stocks is safer.

    embrace of Tesla — and vice versa — when the United States and China have never trusted each other’s high-tech companies less.

    marveled at the way Mr. Musk handled the country’s hard-nosed authorities. They have been more critical of the ways he has sometimes treated his own workers. He lashed out last year at California health officials who demanded that a Tesla factory there remain closed out of coronavirus concerns. The company has also come under scrutiny for workplace injuries and racial discrimination.

    “He is a real dreamer and creator, yet he is also a coldblooded, self-absorbed megalomaniac,” Hong Bo, a longtime tech commentator in China who writes under the name Keso, said of Mr. Musk. “I admire his courage in breaking with outdated conventions, and yet I intensely dislike his trampling on the bottom lines of humanity.”

    Mr. Musk and Tesla did not respond to emails requesting comment.

    The frustration with Big Tech is part of a wider malaise in China. For many young people, decades of breakneck economic growth seem to have resulted in only fiercer competition for opportunities, less stability and less say over the direction of their lives.

    On the Chinese internet, the term that has captured the mood is “involution,” previously used by anthropologists to describe agrarian societies that grew in size or complexity without becoming more advanced or productive.

    The feeling among young Chinese people that they are fighting harder for a slimmer chance at material gain is leading them to hope to “reorganize life in a different way,” said Biao Xiang, who studies social change in China and is director of the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology in Germany.

    later apologized for “excessive self-promotion.” Or Jia Yueting, who set out to best Apple in smartphones and became buried in debt. Even Mr. Ma of Alibaba appears to have helped catalyze the government’s crackdown against him by speaking a little too frankly at an event about his annoyance with regulators.

    shared a stage at a Shanghai tech conference in 2019. There may never have been a more mismatched pair. Mr. Ma was earnest and engaged, at ease in the role of conference grandee. Mr. Musk was fidgety and jokey. The two did a great deal of talking right past each other. Mr. Ma said the answer to superintelligent machines was better education for humans. At this, Mr. Musk merely laughed.

    In a compilation of awkward moments from the event posted on the video site Bilibili, the comments are brutal, mostly to Mr. Ma.

    “This is the person who in China was once looked up to as a god,” one person wrote. “In the presence of a real master, he is like a performing monkey.”

    Alibaba declined to comment.

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