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Elon Musk says it’s ‘time to break up Amazon’

Elon Musk, founder and chief engineer of SpaceX speaks at the 2020 Satellite Conference and Exhibition March 9, 2020 in Washington, DC. Musk answered a range of questions relating to SpaceX projects during his appearance at the conference. Musk has said concern over the coronavirus outbreak is overblown and called for the end of government orders limiting business operations. (Win McNamee/Getty Images/TNS)

Elon Musk ended his brief respite from tweeting Thursday when he went on Twitter to say that he thinks its time for Amazon to be broken up.

Musk, who on Monday tweeted that he would be “off Twitter for a while,” was back on the social media platform, and mostly responding to messages about the recent successful launch of SpaceX’s first manned spacecraft. But, when it came to one person’s experience with Amazon, Musk changed gears to take on the e-commerce giant.

Musk showed his displeasure with Amazon after writer and former New York Times reporter Alex Berenson said Amazon refused to carry a book he wrote that is critical of national lockdown efforts aimed at slowing the spread of coronavirus. Berenson tweeted a screenshot of Amazon’s notice saying his book didn’t meet the company’s guidelines for publication.

That notice got Musk fired up, and he soon sent his thoughts to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.

“This is insane @JeffBezos,” tweeted Musk, who then added. “Time to break up Amazon. Monopolies are wrong!”

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When reached for comment on the matter, Amazon said that Berenson’s book was removed in error, and that it has notified him that his title has been reinstated. The company had no comment about Musk’s call for Amazon to be broken up.

Musk has been vocal in his criticism of shelter-in-place rules that began to be implemented in March across the Bay Area, and many other parts of the United States, in the fight against coronavirus. In April, Musk called the stay-at-home orders “fascist” on a conference call to discuss Tesla’s quarterly results with industry analysts, and also described the methods as “forcibly imprisoning people in their homes, against all their constitutional rights.”

Musk also got into a confrontation with Alameda County when earlier this month, he reopened Tesla’s manufacturing plant in Fremont without getting approval from county health officials. Musk volunteered to have himself arrested if Alameda County tried to shut down Tesla’s operations. The company soon reached an agreement with the county to keep the plant open and within the county’s operational guidelines.

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© 2020 The Mercury News

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.