The most recent Black Rock City Census has revealed that today’s Burners lean pretty heavily to the left. 43 % of Burners are card-carrying members of the Democrats (versus 6% Republican and 3.5% Libertarian), and for Burners that aren’t particularly tied to a party, 76% voted Democrat at the last election (versus 7.4% Republican and 5.6% Libertarian). A hefty 92% of Burners came in somewhere between “left” and “center”, while only about 0.1% consider ourselves Right Wing.
So it should come as no surprise that BMOrg have gushingly announced the headline act for their annual BurnerCon Global Leadership Conference: two-time former Democratic Presidential Candidate and Fox News Political Analyst Dennis Kucinich.
Kucinich went to Burning Man for the first time last year, giving a speech at IDEATE and an on-Playa in depth interview with Luke Rudkowski from We Are Change.
Now he has learned enough to tell the rest of us how important Burning Man is to changing the world.
We are excited to welcome a special guest keynote speaker to this year’s GLC! Former U.S. Representative Dennis Kucinich will join us in person on Saturday, April 11 to address why Burning Man culture matters to humanity at this time of great global change.
Dennis is a statesman and philosopher who believes the fundamental truth of our existence is human unity — that we are all one, and that we are interconnected and interdependent. This belief has guided him through public life and he shares it with audiences everywhere. An internationally known environmentalist, Dennis is passionate about the great evolutionary potential which comes from repairing our relationship to the natural world and to each other.
He has had a long and distinguished career in public service, including serving as a Cleveland City Councilman, Mayor of Cleveland, Ohio State Senator, and U.S. Congressman. He was a two-time Presidential candidate.
Dennis participated in Black Rock City for the first time in 2014. Through the creativity and human connection of Black Rock City and the Burning Man Regional Network, he sees that “Burning Man represents an incandescent vision of a world within our grasp.” [Source]
Within whose grasp? Burners live in this world. Does he mean politicians? The Man? Let’s hope he can show us concrete examples of how he has learned from our culture and is now changing the world with it, and spreading it to others.
I have to disclose that last week I became a huge fan of Mr K, when I learned that he recommended this book to a friend at Burning Man:
Like the Bilderberg Group and Bohemian Grove, the Global Leadership Conference is just for the elites of our culture. It’s not open to “rank-and-file” Burners, only specially selected members of the Regionals Network, and other insiders. BMOrg will be streaming their main sessions live on the Interwebz, for those of us who want to provide global leadership by watching passively from our armchairs. They assure us that the videos will also be available afterwards, if you don’t manage to catch the panel discussions live.
Friday, April 10
Plenary Session 1: The Next Creative Renaissance, Busting it Out, Building it Up, Bringing it Home!
Plenary Session 2: Updates — From the Desert to the World
Saturday, April 11
Plenary Session: Keynote Talks with Marian Goodell and Dennis Kucinich
Watch the stream here. We will be live commenting it on our Twitter @burnersdotme …if I get out of bed early enough.
We’ll let Burning Legend Jim Carrey take us out…
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Dennis should consider a further career in politics in California, where folks are much more tolerant of their rhetoric having such a big dollop of geometrically sacred fluff on top.
He did disclose that he is bringing a UFO art car in 2015.
Social Alchemist? Bear Kittay sure looks clean, must be from all that hard work doing interviews at Burningman in between buttplug and play visits.
Apparently I have not understood what Burning Man is. Going five times about 10 years ago apparently exposed me to some aberration. Thankfully I have these virgins to explain it all to me! I suppose I missed the real event, working with a half dozen others to build our place on the playa and doing out little theme camps. Yup, missed the real thing.
I entirely missed the experience where you listen to “famous” people, who have never been there before, tell you what Burning Man is all about. Don’t think there was much of that when I went. Seems the NV burn represented here is something I can just sit back and watch.
My experience was more like this….
I guess I just missed out. 🙁
I’ve been to the GLC. All it really consists of, is a burning man themed pep rally, or teamwork building exercise. It was pretty weak, but they had some pretty good food.
I remember when i went, the big deal was about the regionals. Burning man said they wanted to focus on building the regional events, providing tons of support to the regional contacts, and eventually making regional events into the main thing, even possibly having multiple burns at the same time as the main event. That was like 8ish years ago. So far, the only thing which has changed, is there is less support to the regional events, and more fear mongering through lawyers. The organization i was affilliated with could never get help from BMorg when we needed, but were threatened with lawyers and cease and desist orders a month after our annual event, when we didn’t provide financial transparency soon enough (and the required BRAF donation of 10% total proceeds, which was a stipulation of using the burning man trademarks).
“Rah rah rah! Gimme a B! Gimme an M! Goooooooooooo Burners!”
Is anyone else as tired as I am hearing/reading about this Bear Kittay person? Jesus fuck he reminds me of that Shingy hack that blathers on about AOL still being relevant.
That’s it! Bear Kittay is Burning Man’s groveling little Shingy.
I’ve come to the conclusion that anyone doing Burning Man full time is doing it wrong. I have the same view of writers.
Anyone who makes stone soup for a living is also doing it wrong. The magic of Burning Man is that it is a time out, where the commercial rules that govern life do not apply. Like stone soup, you bring what you can and don’t expect to take anything away except what all have contributed. That’s why the best-run stone soup events, like Transformus, Figment, and Night Market, are based on volunteers. They make a space in their lives to bring their best without qualification.
However, you have to keep you day job. That’s how you earn the money to bring your contribution and volunteer your time. And that’s also the context that makes the burn so special – break all the rules, and learn which ones you do and do not take back to your day job. Then do it again.
When being a burner is your full-time day job, you are not a burner.
Pretty much. The reason I feel the same about writers is, you need to have something to write about that isn’t another “young writer in the big city” kind of bullshit. Burning Man is built upon people bringing their experiences with the default world to the playa and having them refracted through the prism of the playa. If all you have to bring to Burning Man is crap about Burning Man, it becomes an entropic death spiral. There should be a core staff to handle logistics and that’s it. People like Bear Kittay (Jesus Christ with that name) are worse than useless.
Yes. That’s the key, and endless introspective writers a good example of feckless effort.
As for core staff, I am a member of two stone soup organizations. We volunteer our time to create something, and pay dues for the privilege. But the only paid staff are the ones who deal with the paperwork, do the boring scheduling stuff, and keep the organization running. They have no substantive expertise to volunteer – it’s their day job. When we started paying the people to contribute, as has happened in some limited sense, it screws things up royally. It mostly comes from the paid people feeling they are superior to those who volunteer. They could not be more wrong. They are working for us dues-paying volunteers.
Whenever I come across one of those misguided asses, I tell them if they take payment, they are working for me, and simply refuse to take any direction from them. If I have active choices as to the payment and the amount, it might be different – maybe not. But as it sits, if you get paid, you are the hired help. The volunteers are quite literally the organization. Both of these organizations have lasted for decades, and have made major, measurable contributions to humanity.
And that’s why I give no slack to the BOrg and their top-down monied system. They have missed the boat big time, classic EPIC FAIL. Instead of letting the burners do their volunteer thing and just get out of the way and give the needed support, the BOrg are deluded into thinking THEY are the source of the creativity. It’s like the committee member who thinks he is better than others because his expenses are paid – no, not at all, he is like the staff, being paid to do paperwork. Because the real creative work, done by the 100% volunteers, far more valuable, are the real source of the stone soup, and why people come to contribute and benefit from share in their bowl.
Take away the paid staff, and the stone soup is still there. Take away the volunteer contributions to the soup, and there is no soup, and nothing for the staff to do. It will be fun to watch as the NV burn collapses under the stupidity of not understanding what makes the event. All that stuff mentioned in this blog starter post has absolutely nothing to do with my Burning Man experience, nor any reason I would go. On the contrary, they are clear statements that it is not Burning Man, but nothing more than a show, and a place to see and be seen.
If only we could come up with a tangible metaphor to represent taking the time to create something from nothing, then letting it all go, and then creating it all again. We need to work on that.
Artist Ian Ross at Ocean Beach, 2015
The sand is a good start. But maybe dust instead? And a combined effort of many people, where the ones who created it are the ones who enjoy it. Maybe use… I don’t know… instead of water, maybe fire to consume it? And then they all come together to create it again after they have all saved up from their day jobs. Like stone soup…
There was this film back in the ’70s that struck an image.
Might do something like that. Maybe get Larry to climb on board as Sergeant Howie.
Hopefully with Bear Kittay as the pilot light.
We can only hope.