Oh, the People You’ll Screw

Burner Jordan da Cat has written a very clever poem, inspired by Dr Seuss’ “Oh, the Places You’ll Go” and the forth-coming Simpsons episode. The creativity of Burners is impressive and encouraging; meanwhile, BMOrg’s continued silence in the face of mounting community outrage is very, very disappointing.

By Jordan da Cat:

Dear Burning Man,

Today is your pay day!
You’re off to Great Places!
You’re off and away!

You have cash in your pocket.
Smelly feet in your fuzzy boots.
You can sell your corporate logo in any direction you choose.

You’re no longer on your own.
It’s not what you know, but who you blow.
And YOU are the corporate whore, who will take all the dough.

With our heads full of drugs and our guts full of beer, we’re not smart enough to think for ourselves, oh dear.

Most of us have no reason to frown.
We’ll drop a ton of cash and come to your town.
It’s easier there, without an ounce of care
About the real world and what goes on there.

Out there, magical things can happen and frequently do, to people who may not be as greedy as you.

And as you sell out, don’t worry. Don’t lose sleep. We will will follow you, like a lemming or sheep.

Oh! The Places You’ll Go
Oh, the people you’ll screw
Oh, the money you’ll make
Oh, the media you’ll sell out to.

Oh! The Places You’ll Go
The corporations you’ll blow
Oh, the money you’ll claim
Have you no shame?

You’ll be on your way up! To the East Side!
To a deluxe apartment, in the sky-hi-hi!
You’ll be rolling in cash and seeing great sights!
You’ll rip us all off, like a thief in the night.

You’ll leave us behind, you’ve become the machine.
You’ll rub elbows with the rich, and make millions, umpteen.
You’ll soon take the lead, and forget about the rest.
More mainstream will congest and infest.
A douchefest of headdress and Robosluts undressed.
For no other reason than to show off their breasts.

I must confess, I’m not impressed, and a little depressed.
Might I suggest that you divest and bequest to the rest
Of us … The Burners! Blessed and oppressed.
No … I should have known, should have guessed
Wherever you go, you will top all the rest.

Except when you don’t.
Because, sometimes, you won’t.
Oh, who am I kidding, they’ll just keep bidding
For your soul, which you will sell.
Alas, farewell, and burn in hell.

I’m sorry to say so but, sadly, it’s true
You’ve sold your soul, and no one has a clue.
You only care about money, not the people you’ll screw.

So enjoy the view,

From high up on your perch.
While we worship your logo, like an idol in church.

You’ll come down from the perch without even a bump.
Your landing softened by your wallet, oh so plump
With my money, which I guess makes me the chump.

We’ll continue to come, without a second thought.
Most of us don’t care, that you’ve been purchased and bought.

We’ll come to your city where the streets are not marked.
And worship the Man, as soon as he’s sparked.

Do we dare stay out?
Do we dare go in?
How much should we lose,
So that you can win?
Of course, it’s just my opinion, formed from within.

And if we go in, should we turn left or right?
Is it even safe anymore? Especially at night?
Or go around back and sneak in from behind?
Maybe ask those corporate elites, you wined and dined?

Simple it’s not, I’m afraid you will find
For a mind-maker-upper to make up his mind.
Luckily for you, we are blind, and our minds confined
To the 10 Principles you’ve defined.

What was once a magical space
I fear is headed toward a most mainstream place.
Farewell “Leave no Trace”
Sigh, what a disgrace.

Oh, the masses will flock, and the douchebags’ shirt-cocks
To worship your effigy, that stands on a box.
While you profit from free labor and sell out to Fox.

Oh! The Places You’ll Go
Oh, the people you’ll screw
Oh, the money you’ll make
Oh, the media you’ll sell out to.

Oh, the places you’ll go!
There’s money to be made!
There are points to score!
You’re going to get paid!
So go act like a whore!
And continue the charade!

You’ll be as famous as famous can be!
And soon everyone will be watching, on Live TV!

Except when they don’t.
Because, sometimes, they won’t.
Oh, who am I joking, they’ll just keep paying!
Smoking and toking, for a week they’ll be staying.

I’m afraid that sometimes you’ll play games
While we standby oblivious, mesmerized by flames.
Like long lines, favoritism and ticket prices.
As you carve up your pie and sell it in slices.

But on you will go, even when the weather be foul.
I’m pretty fucking moist right about now, can someone hand me a towel?

No one will challenge your curious mystique,
You’re just too cool, too hip, too chic.
You won’t hear us speak, not even a squeak.
We just want to party our faces off for a week.

On and on you will hike.
While I trick out my bike.
And continue to like
Watching your profits spike.


And will you succeed?
Yes! You will, indeed!
(98 and ¾ percent profits, guaranteed.)

We’ll move mountains to get there!
As you cater to the billionaire.
So…be our name Homer, or Bart or the one with big hair,
I call out to all Burners, of the Borg beware!

Today is your day!
Your pile of cash is waiting.

The Borg hath spoken, no use in debating!
Bow down to the 10 Commandments, stop your hating!

Your money, start saving!
If you want to be in the desert, misbehaving and raving!
Oh the lights and the music and the drugs you’ll be craving!

My apologies for the digression,
But I don’t understand this recent obsession
To sell out and profit with no discretion.
While the world so full of injustice, oppression
It seems the Borg is taking full possession
I’m afraid we’re in for some real regression.

Despite my rant, I do have a confession
And hope I haven’t left the wrong impression,
I still love Burning Man and Decompression,
But if you have a problem with any of this,

Fuck off bitch, Radical Self Expression. 🙂

28 comments on “Oh, the People You’ll Screw

  1. Hubby and I were talking last night… the new “Burning Man” episodes of things coming out are vastly different than the previous ones (see Malcom In the Middle). Now it’s blatant imagery from burning man and blatant advertising for the event. I think they are trying to re-boot the image of the event from a hippy art festival to a yuppie art festival. It explains the recent upsurge in publicity and it explains the special treatment for the millionaire/commodification camps we see popping up. I predict there will be no more low income tickets in the near future.

    Spectators wanted – Millionaires only need apply. )$(

    • I predict there will be no more low income tickets in the near future. = your prediction will not come true. The rich don’t get as many tickets as their are low income tickets so if you are really concerned about who tickets are for then perhaps they should. If they wanted to make it a ‘yuppie art festival’ they would do away with the donations that some camps give to art and cover it all by ticket costs. Which would put tickets at about $600 each. The creator of the Simpsons has gone to BM for years, that he is spreading the joy he gets… you think it’s advertising, he thinks it’s happiness.

      • Why in the world would they “do away with the donations that some camps give to art and cover it all by ticket costs?” The BORg is big into the literal free lunch they get from selling bowls from the stone soup that others make and pay for. Unlike a concert and most ticketed events, they would need to charge thousands of dollars per ticket to create the NV burn from ticket sales.

    • I agree with ‘yeah’ that they will not stop selling their low-income tickets. Those are essential to meet The Seven Principles and their NPD supplies. They dearly need the magical thinking that they are doing something altruistic, while ripping off those who come to contribute. As Figment, a free event, says, “What are you bringing?”

      They have yet to make the transition to the Bohemian Grove, where it is by private invitation only, and artists are paid to bring what the BoD chooses. But they are getting there. Give them time.

  2. To my knowledge the episode hasn’t come out- so I find it concerning that this site would have such a prejudiced opinion. I think it is great that we are all sharing burner culture on a media and personal level and the issue should be more about what we are sharing. It is the board’s decision and if we don’t like what they do- then we should elect different board members. I also know that Malcome in the Middle has a burning man episode and it is one of my favorites. Furthermore looking at the budget- the event alone doesn’t support the infrastructure needed to be a global organization so selling rights helps support all the other regionals. I would highly encourage whomever is curating burners.me to spend some time curating their own emotions before they are blasting things out. It is important that we all have a voice, it is important to talk about controversy, but to say things just to stir controversy and to insult people that you feel are beyond the ability to change- just creates more division. Because of this I am going to stop following you on Facebook and get back to trying to help the board and our community make better choices instead of just being critical.

    • I find it curious that on the one hand you say it’s important that we all have a voice, but then when people creatively express their voice in a way that you disagree with, you claim it’s just to stir controversy and to insult people. I think you should examine why it is that you perceive things that way.

      In my case, I wrote this as a harmless, creative project, designed to make people laugh. It was a cathartic process as well. A way to blow off some frustration with a short piece of writing and a little comedy thrown in. I don’t think it’s healthy to take everything in this world so seriously, especially Burning Man.

      A friend of mine recently reminded me that criticism of culture and prevailing ideas is a good thing. It’s important that we challenge the status-quo. The best thing about this website is that it’s not all about drinking the Kool-Aid and living in a conformist, groupthink society. Every wonderful thing about society has a dark side that should be acknowledged, discussed, and explored. Otherwise, you’re living in a false utopian world, much like Burning Man.

      Maybe that’s why so many Burners get so bent out of shape at anything that they perceive as “negative”, “destructive”, “divisive”, etc. regarding Burning Man. Instead of pointing at others and talking down to them for sharing different and sometimes opposing views than the “norm”, I think it’s a better and more productive exercise to analyze WHY it is we perceive things that way. We can learn a lot about ourselves by doing this.

      As far as you “highly encouraging” burners.me to “to spend some time curating their own emotions before they are blasting things out.” …. This wreaks of elitism, narcissism and ego. Who are you to decide what should and shouldn’t be blasted out? All you are trying to do is control the narrative in society and conform to the groupthink mentality, where we all agree on what’s okay and what’s not okay, what’s constructive vs destructive, etc. This is one of the biggest problems in our society today, in my opinion. If you don’t buy into the groupthink, you’re not welcome.

      “Because of this I am going to stop following you on Facebook and get back to trying to help the board and our community make better choices instead of just being critical.” What you consider being critical, I call being artistic and creative and not taking the world or myself too seriously. But by all means, unfollow, live in a groupthink bubble and get back to helping the community make better choices (ie – ones that you agree with).

      I love Burners who are slaves to the 10 Commandments but as soon as you try to express yourself in a way that makes them uncomfortable, they scream and shout about you being “critical” and “divisive”. So much for radical self-expression. Hypocrites of the worst kind.

      As far as the budget not supporting the infrastructure needed to be a global organization and selling rights to reach that objective, why not just scale back, instead? Why the need for globalization?

    • Great fiction!

      “It is the board’s decision and if we don’t like what they do- then we should elect different board members.”

      “…so selling rights helps support all the other regionals.”

      “It is important that we all have a voice…”

      “…trying to help the board and our community make better choices…”

      An interesting fantasy. Maybe you should bring this up at your next therapy session.

      • “It is the board’s decision and if we don’t like what they do- then we should elect different board members.”

        Oh right. Like the way it works in Washington D.C., I suppose.

        • No, the Government (sic) at least has to play the voting game. The BOrg has entirely disenfranchised the Burners, and can make decisions as they please. The huddled masses who make the NV burn happen are dealt with by the Minister of Propaganda.

    • “…elect new board members”?? The BORG members are probably not gonna be having elections anytime soon. Why would they? So they can be kicked out of their own company?

      “…selling rights helps support all the other regionals” ???You clearly have no idea what you are talking about. The Regionals get absolutely NOTHING from the Burning Man organization except permission to use the )'( Logo and other copyrighted material owned by the Burning Man blob of Corporations. The BORG then asks…ahem…forces the Regionals to donate a percentage of any profits to Burning Man affiliated charities and the rest must ALL go back into producing next years Regional. This leaves the Regionals perpetually Broke while the Burning Man Blob profits indirectly thru name recognition so they can sell more t-shirts, hats, keychains and tickets.

      Then you claim you want to “help the board and our community make better choices instead of just being critical” …and claim you will no longer follow b.me which is the Free Press of Burning Man. Wait…what??

      ps- Most of what I just wrote here would NEVER EVER make it past moderation on the E-Playa, which is very anti-open-communication and basically just uses all “Pro-Burning Man” and Moderator Approved posts for free web content to boost their visibility and profits.

      Fuck Your Day! and pull your head out of the dust, ya clueless PLUR-hippie.
      See you in BRC 2015! Because it really is one the best parties on the planet…even tho’ the organizers are a bunch of sell-out hypocrites

      • Agreed – Burning Man is great, because it’s made by Burners. That doesn’t mean the administrators should be beyond being held accountable for their actions.
        Having elections for the Board of Directors would be a step in the right direction. In fact, I think that’s why democracy was invented – because before it, we just had tyranny.

        • Disagree. “Democracy” would be disastrous for Burning Man, it would turn it into politics. I do not want a bunch of Burners voting for anything on my behalf. 🙂

          • Look at the FB discussions on the Playa del Fuego and Transformus groups. That is enfranchisement. Look at Tanya Everywhere’s extended dialog on the PDF financial plans, based on a detailed survey of the burners. THAT is how a stone soup group can be effectively managed to enfranchise those that make it.

            This BOrg crap is the antithesis. They are entirely worried about their internal operations, salaries and NPD supplies. Their only concern for the burners is that they feed them some sort of spin that will let the faithful keep making the NV burn happen for them. Instead of working to make the NV burn better for the burners, the BOrg is seeing how far they can push the default world envelope without losing too many burners. )$(

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