Why is everyone so giddy about the flooding thay happened at burning man?

Social media seems to be laughing its ass off about this tragedy, is it because the folks at burning man are perceived as frivolous hippies or something? Everyone I’ve ever met who was a regular burning man attendee has been a solid human being with strong morals, personally and financially responsible, a career. Upstanding members of society for sure. I guess all some people know is the sensationalized drugs and sex. A person died. This is a tragedy for an event that brings positivity into the world. Kind of annoyed.



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  • PrettyBlackDress,

    Wouldn’t every event or festival be an exercise in waste and excess? May be e we should just stay at home forever and work


    I’ve heard smaller, local burns are better experiences now and are less wasteful. Just like most things, the original spirit and intent of an event gets lost when it becomes bigger and commercialized.

    snowfalldreamland, (edited )

    Well it being in the middle of a desert makes it more wasteful.

    But yes giant festivals that encourage a lot of travel and needlessly burning things are in general wasteful and potentially excessive. There are other leisure activities, so discouraging festivals is not equivalent to working nonstop.


    Isn’t unnecessarily lighting stuff on fire kind of the point?




    They build and set ablaze a giant man! It’s eponymous!



    People always judge personal waste as something they don’t enjoy. It’s fun to hate on people who enjoy things.

    I have never went but the people I know who go have been going so long that their kids are bringing their kids. It sounds like a great community event where most of the point is to meet the people who go there.

    The desert is usually a good place to host a mass event since it is a flat large area. By definition rain is rare in a desert.

    deweydecibel, (edited )

    It’s also because Burning Man, at least in the last decade or more, just turned into another affluent, rich white people and influencer event. Whatever it was to start, it’s effectively glamping now.

    Sure, there are definitely some genuinely good people there, lower middle class, saved up and took their only vacation time they get all year to spend a few days there, and it sucks this happened to them. If those people end up in the hospital and the shitty insurance they get from work does fuck all to help mitigate the expenses, I’ll even get angry on their behalf.

    But the majority of them? They spent a lot of money, money most people don’t have the luxury of getting to spend, on a pointless self-indulgent festival in the fucking desert, and this time it’s come back to bite them. My sympathy is extremely limited.

    They’ll be miserable for a few days, get out, dry off, and go back to their easy lives. Their affairs are taken care of back home, they can miss days of work, their hospital stays will be covered, etc.

    It’s kind of like the Fyre Festival. Those people got fucked over hard, but those people were also not the kind I particularly pitty. Spending a lot of money on an experience only to be miserable for a few days is not a tragedy. What happened to the poor people that lived there is the tragedy.

    Edit: Also just want to point out OP is trying to call this a “tragedy” when there’s only been one suspected death, the cause of which is unknown as it hasn’t even been confirmed yet, but the overall mood is positive, and by all accounts everything is being managed. They’re trapped, not dying.



    I went a couple of times years ago when it was just starting to turn into what you describe. Had a great time, but it quickly priced me out. Now, it sounds like an influencer-laden hellscape. The addition of premium plug and play sites was the nail in the coffin. That said, a lot of the old time Burners are fucking amazing, creative, resourceful, and helpful people.

    donuts avatar

    It’s also because Burning Man, at least in the last decade or more, just turned into another affluent, rich white people and influencer event.

    I'm pretty sure it's been that way for at least 20 years...

    The only people I've personally known to go to Burning Man was a rich kid in high school who went with his dad who was a marketing high-up at a very big tech company. Always came back talking about trying drugs and seeing some crazy shit, but then on Tuesday it's right back to full days of pointless meetings I guess. I've never been and I frankly don't ever care to, but that alone gave me the feeling that Burning Man is where tech suits go to play hippie for the weekend, and that always felt lame as fuck.

    @bennieandthez@lemmygrad.ml avatar

    completely agree with this take, also OP screams american excepcionalism.

    bionicjoey, (edited )

    It’s kind of like the Fyre Festival. Those people got fucked over hard, but those people were also not the kind I particularly pitty. Spending a lot of money on an experience only to be miserable for a few days is not a tragedy.

    Blame sensationalist media on this one, but it’s a misconception. Very few victims spent a lot of money on Fyre Festival. Most got tickets which were purported to be “all inclusive” for <$1500 USD (a pretty good deal, had it not been fraudulent). A handful of tickets sold for the $12K price which ended up in the headlines, but the standard price was a fraction of that. There’s a good summary of this discrepancy here: youtu.be/UBPg5ftCMv8


    One of the things I’ve learned over time is people can have vastly different perceptions of what being “poor” is, and I suspect that’s what’s happening here.

    I think there are those who could not afford to put down the 1.5k you’re quoting.


    Well yes of course, but there are lots of “poor” people who have maybe been saving up for a vacation and could make $1500 appear for an opportunity if the value seemed good enough. My family wasn’t rich growing up, but we would still go on one frugal vacation a year, which probably ended up costing a similar amount. It’s definitely not a demographic that I would feel “deserved” getting defrauded and left in a FEMA tent with no food and water for a weekend.


    That’s not poor at all. I was one of eight kids growing up, and we never, ever, went on a vacation of any kind. It just wasn’t possible at all.

    @LapGoat@pawb.social avatar

    small local burns are more true to form in that endeavor. people clean up after themselves and are generally respectful.

    some bad actors, but it’s a nice disconnect from technology.

    I like to go and host a alternate dimension themed arcade with silly obscure games.


    Hilariously, this exact thing happened to Alchemy in Georgia in 2015. The year of Alchemud. Got us kicked out of the county for a bit. Had Alchemy in Wakanda one year, but far too many fire ants.

    @LapGoat@pawb.social avatar

    Ive heard of this lol


    Alchemy is usually the second largest burn in the US. Though it’s Alchemy’s ~3.5k people, vs Burning Man’s 75k. Still, ton of fun for the art, music, and psychedelic crowds.


    Alchemy in Wakanda

    haha come on. what are you talking about?

    DLSchichtl, (edited )

    One of the festival grounds we tried out was where they filmed parts of Black Panther outside of Atlanta.


    ohhh. I thought you were roleplaying at first!


    Ooh, what games? Where?

    @LapGoat@pawb.social avatar

    local burns, whatever seems whimsical and trippy

    @kttnpunk@lemmy.world avatar

    Well far be it from me to judge anyone at a music festival but I think for many burning man has some bourgeoisie, fake hippie sorta connotations?

    @mysoulishome@lemmy.world avatar

    Yep, exactly my confusion…this makes it ok to take joy at what happened? I think the perception is wrong but even if not…it’s fucked up.


    I think - correctly or incorrectly - a lot of people perceive the typical Burning Man attendee nowadays as being a rich and/or famous person who is somewhere between indifferent to + amused by the suffering of other people less fortunate than they. And - again, not saying this is correct - they perceive this as being more of an annoying/inconvenient/uncomfortable thing (lots of wallowing in filth, but only 1 death AFAIK) than a bona fide natural disaster; totally different order of magnitude from what just happened in Florida, for example, or Hawaii.

    So it's less serious than a hurricane or flood or whatever in a populated area, and affects much more deserving people; if, heaven forbid, a bomb went off and hundreds of Burning Man attendees died it would be a very different story, and certainly in that case I don't think any decent person would laugh about it, but a bunch of rich assholes stuck in the mud playing "Survivor" for a week is much more farce than tragedy.


    When leftists say eat the rich they don’t mean it in a nice way.

    @mysoulishome@lemmy.world avatar

    Are burning man people rich? Not being a smartass, I’m just trying to understand the perception.


    Generally, they're not. I'd say it's an inclusive crowd that likes to backbite each other. I don't particularly love burners, but this level of distain is ridiculous. A lot of art collective types and their patrons.


    You should have your mom check your house for lead paint.


    Oh look, I see you gettin a little sass there now 😚 Don’t make me come over there and spank you

    @Slab_Bulkhead@lemmy.world avatar

    who me? i’m just a poor lower class fine art patron.


    Not really what I'm saying. If you don't know the type, you don't know the type. Bunch of fire spinners and Etsy sellers working middle class jobs.


    I don’t take joy in suffering of anyone. My only experience of the Burning man festival is on the hilarious episode of “Malcom in the Middle.” Also, rain in the desert is often a mixed blessing


    I always think of the Reno 911 episode, that was hilarious as well.

    @Zoidsberg@lemmy.ca avatar

    Higher up you were talking about a travel writer marrying a doctor. Those motherfuckers are rich.


    Nuance is a dead concept to an online leftist.

    Catch em at a bar and they’re generally better versions of themselves.


    Some yes, some no. There is definitely a large swath of tech bros and influencers, but there are also plenty of working-class people there too. My burner group is just a bunch of kink folks from every income bracket, having a good time. It is very art and music heavy, so normally it is a lot of fun seeing the art and mutant vehicles, then hitting up whatever music happened to be nearby. I prefer smaller regional burns, but there is still something to be said about doing Burning Man. It’s on a whole different scale.


    You’re not traveling in the wrong circles. Come to a VC fund dinner in September where junior VCs and 28-year-old “mortgage disrupter” CEOs brag about the air-conditioned plug-and-play camps they spent tens of thousands on, and play wink-wink with each other about all of the fun they had.

    I’m a multiple-time BM vet, but it’s mostly an expensive, bureaucratized drug party for tourists now.

    It’s perfectly fine to goof on it as it sinks into a physical and moral quagmire. Forgive a poorly scaled analogy, but your logic is the NRA’s logic when there’s a mass shooting: “Now, when everyone’s attention is focused, is not the time to highlight the underlying issues.”


    No one hates the luxury plug-n-play campers more than other burners. And the org has even taken steps to crack down on them.

    But the only thing older than non-burners hating on burners is burners saying “it was cooler back in the times when I went. It sucks now.”

    What years were you there?



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  • scarabic,

    You’re not allowed to vend anything at Burning Man. No commercial transactions permitted.

    However, there are “adventure travel” companies that will take thousands of dollars of your money, weeks before the event, and then take you there and keep you in luxury the whole time. There are people who set up tents and prepare food and do all the cleaning for you, etc.

    This has never been a significant proportion of the people attending. Not even 1%. If nothing else, it’s just too expensive for most people. So if you hear people shitting on this practice, just know that it isn’t broadly representative, and every single other burner out there who is pulling their own weight also hates these camps.

    They’re strictly against the values of the community. Self reliance and decommodification are declared expectations. And while there have always been moochers and lameasses to be found, having companies make a business out of this was beyond the pale. The org began taking steps to ensure that these operations don’t get tickets and don’t get into the gate.


    Self reliance in the desert, by bringing in all you need for your totally natural camping experience.


    Yes you bring what you need. How do you think camping is supposed to work?


    Burning Man ‘promotes’ anti-consumerism and communal effort, however attending requires significant financial resources and costs that can and do exclude (most) people, it’s living hyprocracy, and an excellent example of capitalism corrupting grass roots ideals. honestly is an absolute joke of a festival.


    It’s like $400 for a ticket, and then the rest of the cost is getting there, food, water, shelter, etc. You can pay as little or as much as you want to accomplish those things. Plenty of people drive there and stayed in tents. I don’t see how it’s any different than camping for a few days.


    Because I can go camp somewhere for less than $100?

    @moonsnotreal@lemmy.blahaj.zone avatar

    Lmao I’ve camped for free just by pitching a tent off the side of a secluded road.


    I was calculating in gear costs too tbh.


    You wouldn’t be at burning man then. It’s obviously a very different experience.

    @WheeGeetheCat@sh.itjust.works avatar

    check again it was up to $575 this year

    Ive never been to burning man. I went to Coachella a LLOOONNGG time ago when it was hippies rolling around in the dust. Coachella ain’t that anymore, it’s instagram rich kids and tech bros. I assume the same thing has happened to burning man.


    No it doesn’t. Poor as dirt and go almost every year. So many idiots in this thread have no idea what they’re talking about. Just parroting the media.

    @YeetPics@mander.xyz avatar

    What if I told you you could be less poor than dirt if you didn’t buy overpriced festival tickets?


    Clearly, people who classify themselves as “poor as dirt” should not be allowed to spend money on anything they consider fun.

    @YeetPics@mander.xyz avatar

    Clearly, if you can afford $400 for a ticket you aren’t “poor as dirt”. But you go on ahead and decide what my message was :]


    the people I knew who went in the past would usually pool money together in order to get all the camping supplies and gas money.


    And yet you spend like Bilbo Baggins?


    There is a similar thing not far from where I live. Through an unlucky friend, then the neighbour of their festival grounds, I got to discover the organizers’ ‘ideals’ and ‘ethical and ecological approach’ first hand. In short: it was about money. And more money. And they managed to turn a large reservoir into a dying punch bowl of acid, piss and shit within only a decade. I suspect Burning Man to be the same, considering the ticket prices. The fact that some poor fools with their heart and soul intact save their little money to visit this monstrosity just makes it more sad.

    I don’t actively engage in Schadenfreude much, but I do carry a little of it in my heart. If people think flying or driving very far away for Entertainment, and bringing thousands of people into an otherwise quiet place is okay for the wildlife there, and can be in any way an ecological thing, they have understood very little about ecology. And now also ignored by most: the destruction that happens by the thousands of ‘poor humans who just wanted to have fun’ trampling through the last remnants of life in a drought stricken place.

    We are not alone on this planet. Invading a place with our idea of fun is very damaging. We can party perfectly well at home. If home happens to be bleak and sad maybe we should work on that first before invading quiet places.


    Just as a counterpoint, the area burning man is held in is one of the most ecologically inert places you could go. There’s no vegetation and the only life to speak of is brine shrimp eggs, which are about as threatened as mosquito larvae.

    There’s still a lot of trash that gets left behind which can travel with wind, but as far as impact on the land goes, it’s likely significantly less invasive than your local county fair. There’s just nothing out there for them to damage.

    @Battle_Masker@lemmy.world avatar

    aside from the obvious “rich people exploiting the environment with their hippy party that costs $200 for their cheapest tickets,” I saw a video online that brought up a good point that I never considered. The cost of lumber has increased exponentially in the past 3 years alone, jumping to nearly $1700 per 1000 feet at its peak in 2021, but staying between $400 and $600 per 1000 feet in recent months (still high compared to say 10 years ago.) And these people are buying tens of thousands of feet of lumber solely to burn it away in the middle of nowhere where there’s little vegetation to absorb the excess CO2 waste. That, along with the climate change protesters being police brutalized just before the event, really puts a sour taste in people’s mouths. Especially in a time where “once in a lifetime” weather events seem to be back-to-back.

    economic data from: tradingeconomics.com/commodity/lumber


    Yesterday in the US it was labour day, 100 of millions of Americans has a BBQ many using coal and wood the impact of burning man is insignificant in comparison


    Tickets cost about 10x that. I was interested back when it was a cool art exchange, freedom event. But SO many people flock to it as a giant party that it’s become restrictive unless your volunteering or bringing an exhibit.


    From old burners I have talked to, the entire experience has completely changed. Alcohol used to be frowned upon, now it’s common place.


    Burning wood just releases the co2 absorbed when growing it.


    What are fossil fuels other than captured carbon from plants and animals from long ago?

    Rereleasing carbon is the problem now. Wood being sustainable needs a non-surplus in carbon emissions to begin with.


    Everything is “carbon neutral” on a long enough timescale. One of many reasons why that expression is 100% unadulterated bollocks. If you’re an airline, you can’t just offset the damage you do by paying a Bangladeshi farmer two dollars to throw some tree seeds on the ground.


    Burning man should become Burried man. Everybody should dig a hole and burry the wood. That is carbon capture.

    I am not an expert. So this could just be a naive take. I wouldn’t be surprised burying wood actually amplifies the carbon emissions due to some reactions with soil, or something.


    I would think the biggest pollutant there would be all the fuel.

    Getting there and back (and the location could be charitably described as the arse end of nowhere), all the rented RVs with the air con running… Burning a wooden effigy wouldn’t even come close.


    I mean, decomposition releases methane over time, slower than burning does, but buried wood in the desert is more likely to petrify than rot. There’s a lot to be said for burying wood in certain situations. Hugelkultur (making agricultural/garden mounds out of wood and soil) if done right can do amazing things (everything from creating microclimates that increase biodiversity to supercharging the soil with beneficial fungi/bacteria, to increasing water retention).


    Sincerely with rocket launches now being a daily thing i’m not very worried by that burning lumber.


    Rockets mostly use hydrogen as fuel, burning wood is way more polluting than burning hydrogren.


    Also John Wilson tried to go shoot at the event and after compiling hours of footage was told that he couldn’t use any of it because there was some exclusive licensed coverage provider for the event.


    And these people are buying tens of thousands of feet of lumber solely to burn it away in the middle of nowhere where there’s little vegetation to absorb the excess CO2 waste.

    That’s not really how plants work.

    Photosynthesis turns co2 + water into sugar + oxygen. Cellular respiration turns sugar + oxygen into co2 + water.

    The total co2 absorbed by a plant is exactly equal to the amount of co2 used to make all the sugar, cellulose, etc. the plant currently has. Digestion, decomposition, fires etc. undo that.

    A mature forest or lawn is carbon neutral: new growth is balanced out by decomposition of old growth.

    Distance to plants doesn’t matter. What matters is if and how the trees they’re burning are being replanted or replaced. .

    @Battle_Masker@lemmy.world avatar

    Thanks for the correction. That helps me better understand how counteracting pollution works


    Some of the worst people I’ve worked with are “burners”.

    There’s apparently a private jet at burning man this year that was taking off and landing constantly so that people could fuck on the jet - it’s fall of Rome style excess in a broken world where most people’s basic needs are not met on an enormous scale.

    Your statement is fairly tone deaf to the basic objective reality of the “party”, OP. The frustrated people at the bottom are feeling a bit of catharsis in the money burning factory closing for a day while they starve and watch.

    @stepan@lemmy.ca avatar

    So like “let’s fly on private jets to a nice swiss resort to discuss climate change”

    @ricdeh@lemmy.world avatar

    So you think it’s okay to laugh at people dying?


    Did you miss all the memes about the billionaire dying in the submarine a couple months back? People like laughing at dark humor.


    Generally no, but this episode of tough hippie mudder has been great.


    Way to confirm you’re actually as bad or worse than any of them morally. 👍


    Judge not least. Splinter and timber. Yeah you do you.


    Why wouldn’t it be?


    Hot take: fundamentally, yes. The simple fact that people are dying does not render something unfunny.

    That said, no one has died yet (well, one person, but that was ruled unrelated to the flooding).


    The fact only one person has died speaks pretty well of their community, actually.


    How the fuck do you die because it rained and there’s mud? Hows that make their community look good?


    Burners by and large are dipshits, but no one reasonable is laughing at anyone dying.


    I actually think a lot is the opposite. If you think an event like this, attended by the likes of Bezos and Musk, is countercultural, or even “brings positivity into the world”, I have a beautiful bridge in Brooklyn to sell you. Of course most Burners have jobs, it’s a techbro’s dream. Plus, tickets are more expensive than they were in the old days, so real hippies can’t go. If people want to laugh at the suffering of rich people who cosplay as revolutionary, I’m generally ok with that. One big caveat: I’m very sorry someone died, and I don’t think mocking that’s cool, especially if we don’t know anything about them.


    The richest people on earth attending doesn’t actually mean a single goddamned thing about it. Other than they want to be seen as “cool”…


    Well, I guess we strongly disagree.


    I’m sure billionaires have once enjoyed every activity you love, which if you were to be consistent, somehow taints all the things you enjoy. Very weird to think that way


    An event isn’t an activity. And yes, if an event I loved turned into a meeting place for those people, I’d find a new event.

    If Elon Musk and I both enjoyed cycling, for instance, fine. That doesn’t put me in the same space as him. Which is fundamentally different than going to a weeklong party he’s attending. Have your fun, just don’t pretend it’s revolutionary or creating a better world.


    People are children and repeat what they hear. 15 years ago, I would spout the same nonsense about burning man because of what I read on digg/Reddit from the same voices you hear now. I then met a friend who convinced me to go and I had an absolute blast.

    For the vast majority of people in the US, let alone the world, attending the event is almost impossible due to cost, time, materials, etc. - it’s much easier for people that live nearby and most people within driving distance, the views of burning man will be more in line with your views - nuanced and reasonable. If you have no experience and no contact with the regular folks who attend, it’s super easy to bucket people into all these groups.

    The reasoning about waste and frivolity is total bullshit — don’t tel me your bullshit vacation to Murtle Beach is anymore eco friendly. Or your plane ride to Bangkok to become more worldly is “green”. Burning man is an event, a vacation. I went many times as a student, spending only about $2000 all in. It’s a relatively economical way to have a blast for a week.


    It’s basically this IMO

    Why should they be happy meme


    People are free to do what they want. It’s this self assured BS they use to justify doing drugs in the desert that the majority of the criticism comes from.

    Had a close friend who became a burner. She compared her fund raising for a party to my wife’s political organizing. I can’t even wrap my head around how self delusional it is.


    Yes, idiots exist in all contexts. If you gather enough people in one spot, a nice, countable handful will be dumb.


    Well that’s the thing though isn’t it? Nobody’s saying their Bangkok or Myrtle Beach vacay is eco anything, nor are they vaunting some ethos, sustainability, life altering experimental way to live, Drugs, costumes, art, sex, whatever…an unattainable experience for the vast majority people.

    You might see a selfie in Myrtle beach with a drink or a pic in front of Wat Pho.

    If you’re gonna engage in appeals to hypocrisy, maybe you should try to find actual hypocrisy.


    See, though, this is the ignorance that stems from not knowing real life burners. The vast majority (actually none) that I know do not claim anything eco about the event. These people understand what the event is. Don’t lump every one of the 100s of thousands of those who have attended over the years with the handful of social media starlets posting bullshit online. I promise many many people at burning man hate those who post anything about the event on social media.


    Huh, so you’re saying we should ignore the people who were there and said what happens in favor of your criticism of people going to Myrtle Beach?


    Because people on the internet are miserable and disgusting creatures who hate their lives and literally anyone doing better them. So they celebrate their tragedy to get a sick sense of self satisfaction


    "miserable and disgusting creatures who hate their lives" describes the majority of the Human Race.


    🤣 have a little bit of hope though lol

    @mysoulishome@lemmy.world avatar

    I guess maybe I thought we were past this…or at least most social media has enough sensible people that things like this are properly shouted down…

    @Piecemakers3Dprints@lemmy.world avatar

    Try asking any question on !vegan or similarly culty forum. 🤷🏼‍♂️ This species will always behave like crabs in a fuckin’ bucket. Right up to the very end we all had a hand in.

    @mysoulishome@lemmy.world avatar

    That’s a good connection. Vegans are also popularly perceived as being condescending douchebags but I think most of them are probably humble, chill people who are doing their thing. I don’t have any evidence of this. People laugh like idiots when studies come out that vegan diets are bad for babies or proven to cause ______ deficiency…ok. I know a Native American guy who owns a bbq place and sells tshirts with a cartoon of Indians sitting around a campfire saying “vegan is ____ tribe’s word for village idiot.” Seems like cheap larry the cable guy laughs and anyone who uses this as an excuse to laugh at suffering is a piece of shit…but you do you, folks.

    @Piecemakers3Dprints@lemmy.world avatar

    To put a finer point on it: Larry the Cable Guy is an act that the vast majority of his audience don’t/won’t realize that the joke is, in fact, them. 🤦🏼‍♂️


    People will fool you online using their best behavior as a facade. It’s not until you say something that doesn’t tickle their fancy that their true colors come out.


    And I see your true colors Shining through. - Anna Kendrick and Justin Timberlake


    Much older: Cyndi Lauper, 1986, songwriters Billy Steinberg and Tom Kelly.


    I was misled by a remake.


    I know, and i hope it isn’t seen as rude when i make such corrections “at everyone’s service”.


    Accuracy is never rude despite fools taking umbrage. You're cool dude.


    We may be. Sadly, those sensible people are not on social media.

    Poggervania avatar

    Yup, the internet is very much a place to commiserate and where being negative towards anything not in the hivemind is 1000% A-OK. Like ffs, you even see it in this thread - some other poster literally said that rich people deserve more than just death.

    I’m angry at how fucked up the system is in the US and how politicians basically became the interference between the ruling class and the working class, but when I see people cheering for the death of rich people like with this and that sub that was going to the Titanic recently, that’s not ok. It’s just as bad, if not worse, than either talking about the underlying issues or doing something about them because they allowed themselves to be ok with the death of another human being that doesn’t contribute to either side of the real issue of corporate entities controlling the US - and since that satiated them, then they don’t feel the need to actually go about change.


    Yup. Those kind of people are the scum of the earth

    donuts avatar

    Can you really blame them? I can't.

    The fact is that we are living in societies with an increasing wealth gap between the richest and the poorest people. While the rich can afford basically anything, including to fuck around in death trap submarines at the bottom of the sea or peyote orgies in the desert, the average people are finding it hard to afford a house, a family, pets, a car, groceries and basic needs, etc. Everything is a rental, the average person owns very little, some people own nothing at all, and that creates a society where people feel they have been abandoned and have no stake in anything. Meanwhile governments and corporations that influence them are leading us towards a future odd climate catastrophe, AI generated bullshit, and economic collapse.

    So is it any surprise the poor majority resents the rich minority? The worse the wealth gap gets, the stronger the resentment grows. And it has been that way throughout human history, leading to example after example of social unrest and violent revolution. A stable and healthy society demands an economy with a strong middle class that can afford the things they need and some of the things they want.


    Finally. Someone cleverer than me found a good way to put it. Burning Man fiddles while it’s everything else, ironically, that burns.


    Because they’ve never been.


    I’m just appalled at these comments!

    Why does it matter what the festival represents or not?
    Why does it matter if you stamd for or against it?

    There was a flood, people got hurt, someone even died.
    And people are laughing at it?
    And ridiculing it‽

    Where is the respect?

    @mysoulishome@lemmy.world avatar

    We are just here to show how good and smart we are and how bad and dumb everyone else is


    there is a regional burn they have every year in my state, i went for like 6 years straight in the 2010s … my fav part was walking around nekkid lol. i also participated in the fire performance ceremony before the burn. but then they modified the rules to allow children to attend and i haven’t gone since. :<

    it only cost $30 and was a great fun and awesome time, as long as you took care of your MOOP!!! (and stay hydrated!)

    the big burning man festival from what i understand lost the true spirit a long ass time ago.

    @mysoulishome@lemmy.world avatar

    Interesting. What is moop?


    It just rich boomers. I’ve never met anyone under 50 who talked about burning man.


    what an idiot. your misuse of the term boomer indicates you’re probably around 15.


    Did we just collectively decide that gen X are now boomers? Or are we just going to perpetually call everyone over 50 a boomer?


    Yeah everyone over 50 is a boomer now

    cypherpunks, (edited )
    @cypherpunks@lemmy.ml avatar

    i’m not one to defend burning man, and there have been a lot of billionaires there for years, but you are mistaken about the age demographics:



    via blackrockcitycensus.org

    (I used to think I would go one day but i realized over a decade ago that i was no longer tempted to…)


    There is a really adorable contingent of old people there. One of their camps is called "The Shack of Sit. They provide a shack… where you can go and sit. They also do the “little black dress parade” where all these 65+ men and women wear short and sexy black dresses and play marching band instruments on their way around promenade. It’s so sweet.


    Fuck your burn!

    It’s not a tragedy, it’s life on the playa. Every participant knows this. The back of the ticket states that you could die out there. Part of it is survival. Radical self reliance.

    These aren’t opinions, these are facts. Radical self reliance is one of the 10 principals of burning man.

    @mysoulishome@lemmy.world avatar

    Thanks for the information

    dipshit, (edited )

    Anytime! I should also clarify, “fuck your burn” means what it sounds like, but it’s also a pretty common thing to hear at the event. That’s not because everyone’s sarcastic or everyone’s mean. It’s that everyone’s everyone and that means what it means.

    I’ll say that when it rains at the event it is a magical experience. Imagine that you’ve been in the desert for days, you’re dusty as hell and tired, hot, dirty. You long for a shower or running water maybe… and all of the sudden, you get a fine mist or a little bit of rain and you hear people start making noise and dancing in the rain.

    This much water is obviously different, but there’s this sense of being in this predicament together and the community itself is built on giving, so likely others are helping where they can. In the absolute worst case scenarios, they can air lift people out of the event to a hospital in reno. I think for the most part this is just a big story for people to tell.

    Also, sorry I just read that someone died at the event. Sadly this happens sometimes, for various reasons. I’ll say that during the big burn, there’s a group of volunteers who’s job it is to surround the fire, facing the crowd and physically take down anyone who runs toward the fire in an attempt to end their life.



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  • JohnnyEnzyme,

    Rain at a festival isn’t.

    That’s pretty much stripping all relevant context from the situation. The rains are absolutely a big deal for a special campout-celebration that’s held in a fairly hostile natural location, with ground that becomes disastrous in terms of movement when there’s heavy rain.

    It would be one thing if BM was just a frivolous celebration, but it’s heavily art-oriented, creative in nature, and meaningful for a whole bunch of folks who are trying to engage in something special once a year. So it’s not The Holocaust, no, but more than just the loss of the festival, there’s still some real danger going on for hundreds of folks right now.


    I know old burners, none of them went this year, nor the last few years. They have other smaller events they go to now that retains the old feel of Burning Man. It is very much frivolous now.


    Okay, what makes it frivolous now?


    Alcohol is common now, the art is ignored by a lot of people, people just aren’t as generally sociable. From what I can see, it’s morphed into something that’s less about sharing and showing art, into showing off and partying. I am not a habitual burner, so leaning on stories and photos from friends, and maybe the prior years were just off years, and I missed the year that brought it back to its roots… but somehow I doubt it.


    the art is ignored by a lot of people, people just aren’t as generally sociable. From what I can see, it’s morphed into something that’s less about sharing and showing art, into showing off and partying.

    Ugh, yeah, that sounds plenty disappointing. :S


    Fine, but calling it a tragedy takes away from actual tragedies.


    For who? I understood that when he called it a “tragedy,” it was heavily based on his POV and emotions at the time. That’s about as innocuous as it gets, and isn’t going to change anything across the world IMO.


    The word “literally” used to have a specific meaning, but now it annoyingly has the exact opposite meaning of its original. The word “pentultimate” was supposed to mean “second to last” but then it turned into “super-ultimate”

    No one anything changes the word… Until it does. It would be nice if words can keep their meaning without getting diluted so when you really need it, you have it.


    Yeap, I understand those sentiments, and am fairly picky about language myself.

    Still, in cases like these, I have to bow to the fact that language is and always was fluid & ever-changing. That, and the fact that we must pick our battles in life. shrug



    I approve of this abbreviation.


    When you camp on a lakebed, you’re going to be camping in a lake sometimes.


    AFAIK it’s a dried-up lake bed that rarely experiences this kind of thing during BM week.

    Maybe I’m wrong, tho.

    dipshit, (edited )


    And yes, when rain rains on a dried lake bed (playa, not “beach” in spanish), you get lake.

    Climate change means the cilmate will not stay the same.

    It’s rained a bit while I was there years back, but not to this extent. Not that it wasn’t always a possibility though.


    Climate change means the cilmate will not stay the same.

    Pard, you sure as shootin’ got that part right.

    And I’ve barely been following this year’s event at all. If heavy rains were indeed predicted, then it seems to me that at the very least, the organisers have some pretty colossal questions to answer.



    We can’t predict weather past about 7 days at best. “We” meaning humanity, “weather” meaning weather (not climate). I am pretty sure we can’t forecast how climate will change.

    But the organizers of the event having pretty colossal questions to answer makes little sense to me in regards to flooding. BM was held on the beach in california until the gathering got too big and moved to the desert. The BLM gives BRC (BM) a permit each year (so far) and limits the population - they also controll ingress and egress to BRC. The gate to BM is sometimes closed whilst people are still in line, because the population has reached capacity. Population being something on the order of 75k each year, a lot les than coachella.

    But again, burning man is a temporary event that creates a temporary city (BRC, black rock city), each year, come rain or snow. You really cannot come to this event and expect everything to go exactly as planned. There is medical (free medical, actually) there, but that doesn’t mean you can count on them to save your life. You should bring 1 gallon of water per person per day you plan on attending, at least, you should bring more meds than you think you’d need, etc… etc… It’s survival.

    Heads will not roll because the rain happened. Nothing new about being told to shelter in place - when it rains even a bit on the playa, this happens. It just hasn’t happened to this extent, but there’s always a first for everything.


    Much of what I’ve read confirms things you’re saying, and to be clear, I’ve never been there myself. I’ve only read about the event, including first-hand accounts, and seen video footage.

    My point about the rain is that in the immediate days preceding the event, surely the organisers had a chance to examine the weather report and realise that at the very least, a strong advisory should have been sent out, or maybe even the festival cancelled. Also, is it possible they didn’t know how treacherous the soil there could get with heavy rain?


    This is where burning man differs a little bit from other festivals. A good start to understanding this would be to actually read the terms and conditions of the event:

    1. Event Ingress and Egress. Due to the Event’s remote location, the vehicle capacity limitations of the roads leading to it, and restrictions placed by BLM on maximum population at the Event, I understand that I may be subject to lengthy delays in entering and departing the Event. I will be prepared for long waits on the playa during both ingress and egress (Exodus). I understand that if my vehicle is disabled or abandoned on Gate Road while entering or leaving the Event, my vehicle may be towed out of the traffic lanes, and I expressly release BMP and its agents from liability for any damage to my vehicle that may result from the towing process.

    In short: the BLM controls when you enter and exit the event.

    My point about the rain is that in the immediate days preceding the event, surely the organisers had a chance to examine the weather report and realise that at the very least, a strong advisory should have been sent out, or maybe even the festival cancelled.

    That’s just not how this works, but let me be more clear. BRC is a city, with a working post office, medical, a small power grid, and multiple law enforcement agencies. The city starts being built a few months ahead of time. By building, I mean building, as in sometimes there are large steel structures that need to be brought in with large semi-trucks to build multiple story buildings.

    Because the event is mostly put on by participants and not the festival itself, every festival-goer (called participants) is encouraged to “radically self-express” or otherwise give to the community in their own way. Musicians and DJs perform, Artists create art, groups of people create camps and put on their own events. There’s a guide you’re given at the beginning of the event with a directory of these events put on by various camps - they aren’t a part of burning man, they ARE burning man. The organization itself just creates the infrastructure for the event, the participants organize the event.

    What this means is that there are a few large camps which put up big stages and sound systems, or art cars (some of which are travelling sound systems and dance floors), and these need to be setup prior to the event. So, these large camps (or even smaller camps) have members which apply for something called “early arrival” which lets you arrive a few days prior to when gate opens and the rest of the participants arrive.

    My point in saying all of this is that there is not only momentum of multiple months work going into getting the event setup, but that work and stake is spread across most of the ticket holders.

    Even if burning man was cancelled the moment there was rain, it would still mean there are people there who need to do the work of removing all the gear brought in, waiting until BLM allows them to do so, and waiting for BLM to tell them when they can leave, or just fending for themselves if BLM officers leave early. But one thing is for sure - if that stuff isn’t removed from the desert, the organization can count on not having BLM issue a permit again for the next year - the only reason they keep issuing permits is because of the massive effort that goes into restoring the land to it’s original condtion (“leave no trace”).

    Then we have things like 4th of Juplaya, which is in the spirit of how burning man started: at the same location, around the 4th of july, people just show up and start partying. No tickets are sold, it’s not a formal event. It’s just a place where people show up and party. People camping in near darkness and also people driving as fast as their cars can on the desert playa, while lighting off fireworks, mad max style. Something tells me that people would still come to 4th of Juplaya even it flooded, but that’s just a guess.

    Also, is it possible they didn’t know how treacherous the soil there could get with heavy rain?

    It’s well known in the burning man community that playa when wet is impassible. Sometimes gate gets shut down because of this. This was the case when I was there a few years back for early arrival. It rained a bit, and got muddy, gate was shut for a day or so and then opened back up.

    It’s not soil, it’s a very fine alkaline dust and it gets very muddy when wet. Forget driving, forget riding a bike, you’re going to have problems walking.


    Thanks for the extensive writeup, and if I understand you correctly, there’s more or less way too much momentum of various kinds for any group in particular to call the event off even knowing that harsh weather was about to hit.

    So if you’re a participant you can acknowledge that this year’s event kind of sucked, but that it was still worth it on the whole. Do I have that right?

    One other thing-- I notice some people calling the event a ‘rich person’s event,’ as if to imply the whole thing is frivolous, and that it’s of no consequence that this one was ‘rained out.’ Thoughts?


    Thanks for the extensive writeup, and if I understand you correctly, there’s more or less way too much momentum of various kinds for any group in particular to call the event off even knowing that harsh weather was about to hit.

    Think of it this way: BLM controls when you can enter or leave the city, so if you’re there and the gate is closed, you aren’t leaving anyway until it opens.

    Even if you’re just going to go and have no idea what you’re going to do, just as a solo camper, you’re probably going to want to start planning for your trip a year in advance. Tents don’t work so well on the desert (they get stupid hot), but building a monkeyhut shade structure helps! Or a hexayurt, or a geodesic dome. Once you arrive you can’t drive anywhere, so is your bike in good working condition with big fat tires? Do you have a bike repair kit handy if it’s not? What are you going to wear?! It gets stupid cold at night and stupid hot during the day. How are you going to transport all of this stuff, plus all of the water you will need to bring… should you just rent an RV? Or can your car pull a trailer? How are you going to be seen at night… do you have lights? The ticket itself costs $300+ and sells out nearly instantly, are you ready? Did you consult your list of things you wish you brought last year but didn’t and plan to bring this year? etc…

    It’s usually so much of an event for all those involved that they would go anyway even if the event were cancelled.

    So if you’re a participant you can acknowledge that this year’s event kind of sucked, but that it was still worth it on the whole. Do I have that right?

    If the weather was “perfect” the burn could still suck because of any one or more of the following:

    • you forgot stuff
    • you got hangry and blew up at law enforcement
    • you didn’t take the 5mph speed limit seriously and now law enforcement has dumped all of your stuff on the ground, searching for the drugs you do not have. Or that you did have and now you’ve got a new set of problems.
    • you lost your favorite _____
    • daft punk was not actually playing at the trash fence :(
    • you and your partner had a falling out. this happens a lot. burning man is a test of couples, among other things.
    • that hot girl you had sex with is an undercover cop.
    • you decided smoked weed on the playa at night and a cop with night vision goggles drives out to you on his atv and arrests you.
    • the guy who offered to sell you drugs on the art car was a cop, and the art car is owned by law enforcement.
    • you drank too much free booze and didn’t drink enough water, someone dropped you off to the medical tent in the morning and they started fluid injections to rehydrate you. They put 4 bags in you and that’s the limit, you’re going to reno now… you are airlifted to Reno, which is about an hour’s drive away. You recover in the hospital for the rest of the event.
    • You fell off an artcar and broke your arm.
    • A stage structure failed and there 10 people needed medical attention. You witnessed it and now you need to talk to someone about it.
    • You tried to find a date at the orgy dome but no one was interested.

    But then there’s the magical parts of burning man, which by and large are the people and humanity and all of the wonderful creations of humanity, on display. It’s something everyone should consider trying once, but you could also seek out smaller “regional” burning man events, which have a very similar vibe as the big burn but are more local and are still a lot of fun.

    One other thing-- I notice some people calling the event a ‘rich person’s event,’ as if to imply the whole thing is frivolous, and that it’s of no consequence that this one was ‘rained out.’ Thoughts?

    They’re right, and they’re wrong to an extent. Consider what I’ve posted so far in terms of the things a participant needs to deal with just to survive and enjoy themselves. Now imagine how much easier that would be if you could just show up with a plane ticket and already have a camp with a room waiting for you? This is called “plug and play” camping and it’s something that arguably ruins burning man for a lot of folks. As a participant, you’re just walking by these large blocks of land with gates and lots of RVs inside, sometimes with security. Travel agencies have been caught selling packages like this, and it’s not something that’s sanctioned by the event, but it’s also not something that fits outside of their terms and conditions.

    Artists can apply for grants for art for the event through the organization, but aside from what’s given for art, a lot of the event comes from individual camps. Individual camps that bring large sound systems and large stages, build huge art cars with large sound systems, lasers, led and EL wire lighting, fire, etc… All of that costs money.

    The ticket itself costs $300 but considering gas and everything else you would need, you should budget at least $1000. You’ll also need to be somewhere in life that you can take that much time off work, and your job may not allow for that.

    The last year I went, someone tested the idea of “the playa provides” and arrived at the event naked, without a ticket. He somehow got a ticket, and I imagine he was probably fine for the rest of the event but didn’t hear more about that. So, cost of burning man for the bold and stupid: $0?

    So yes, having money helps, as does with any kind of travel. Having toys at burning man really requires money. Some rich folks make burning man what it is because of the gifts they give in the way of large sound camps, art installations or fun things to do. Some rich folks fly in to reno, take a bus to BRC and stay in basically a hotel for the week on playa. But to say everyone is rich is just wrong.


    Thanks again for answering so extensively. Maybe one day I’ll be able to go (got some health stuff going on).

    Btw, I think it might be useful if you were to collect these comments at some point and edit them in to some sort of… guide, or collection of perspectives. Unfortunately, I’m not sure how many people will be able to drill down this deep in to the comments, but hopefully I’m wrong.


    Oh, no worries! Lots of guides have been written on the topic already, I don’t think I’d have much else to say. But thanks!


    Brother, Burning Man is an excuse for a bunch of people to do a fuckton of drugs out in the middle of the desert.

    Burning Man has never been anything other than a monument to excess. It is, if anything, a poignant statement regarding humanity.

    Am I happy people are struggling? No. But I’d be lying if I didn’t think they deserve it. Maybe the survivors will spend their free time better. Probably not, it’ll just end up meaning poor people are allowed less and less in coming years.


    I’m not debating that drug use, alcohol and sex don’t go on there, but what consenting adults do is their business IMO. For that matter, huge swaths of the rural and semi-rural States seem to be given over to that sort of thing, too, and I think that’s of far more concern than a one week festival, brother.

    Regardless, I’ve seen plenty of footage and pics, and there’s undeniably loads of creativity, art projects, chance meetings between interesting people, and the tribal-experiential aspect going on at BM. I happen to think all that stuff’s pretty damn cool, and I feel no need to dismiss the whole thing just because I’m on some moral high ground from afar.


    “Art” flocks to places like that because of rich people with too much money doing dumb shit… like partying in the middle of the desert.

    Furthermore what makes you think what I’ve said would result in me not condemning those in the south as well? What is this whataboutist bullshit?

    I’m not even going to touch the “tribal experiential” bit.


    “Art” flocks to places like that because of rich people with too much money doing dumb shit… like partying in the middle of the desert.

    Sounds like a pretty facile, cynical, and plain inaccurate way of looking at the tradition:


    @bennieandthez@lemmygrad.ml avatar

    These solid human beings with strong morals, financially responsible with a career, upstanding members of society having their day ruined is not a tragedy? 😫

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