Resident of Oakland Firetrap Blames Burning Man Crowd

Breitbart News brings a first hand report of the history of the Satya Yuga collective that appears to have rented the property as a warehouse, yet somehow for at least 2 years had as many as 20 residents plus children and pets. Only one of the tenants perished in the blaze, resident genius computer expert and homeless Harvard graduate Peter Wadsworth. The other 35 dead were there for the rave all night underground EDM event.

The “Ghost Ship,” the warehouse and artists’ colony where 36 people lost their lives in the Oakland fire last Friday night, was “a serious attempt to bring the Black Oakland culture back into the art scene,” former resident Alexander Doré told Breitbart News.
However, that vision was overrun by what Doré referred to as the “Burning Man crowd.

“We called it ‘the space,’” Doré said. He described himself as a close acquaintance of Derick Ion Almena, the man known as the leader of the community, and one of his wife Mika’s close friends.

We didn’t even give it a name. It was meant to be private. None of it was for sale,” Doré said. “[Almena] wanted me to be a partner and I was brought over to the space by some local musicians and a lady who lived there because I was the third bass player in Sly and the Family Stone,” a well-known American band from San Francisco that was very popular from the 1960s through the 1980s.

Of the owner of the building, Oakland landlord Chor Ng, Doré said: “He should have applied for the permits.” The building was found to lack sprinklers and fire alarms, and the city’s efforts to inspect the premises were unsuccessful — though critics charge that local officials were lax in their duty to enforce fire codes.

“Ending up at this warehouse was part of my, I don’t want to say ‘downfall,’ but I got lost,” Doré said. He later left the community.

“I decided to say goodbye to Derick because I felt there was too much dark energy there due to the people living there,” he said, including youth that he claimed were into drugs, and who took advantage of Almena’s comparatively reasonable — although allegedly illegal — living accommodations in an area where skyrocketing rents have pushed traditional residents out.

Doré explained to Breitbart News that the vision behind “the space” was to revitalize and harness the Bay Area’s seemingly lost African-American culture.

[Source]

What to some is perceived as a “serious attempt to bring the Black Oakland culture back into the art scene”, is seen by others as the classic gentrification model. The (mostly white) artists get sent in to drive the black families out of the neighborhoods. Black artists might get invited in to create the appearance of integration; maybe you find another Basquiat. Usually the ones that make it don’t stick around in the same neighborhoods they grew up in.

I’ve seen it happen over the last 20 years in the Tenderloin, SOMA, the Mission, Hayes Valley, Oakland, and in downtown LA. I’ve heard about it happening in places like Dallas and Houston too. First they send in the crack, and ruin the inner city neighborhoods, driving property values down and spreading poverty. Foreclosures boom, and buildings end up in the hands of the banks. Then, the artists come in, usually following the drugs and not caring about run-down buildings because they can paint them. They get away with more street art because the neighborhood is otherwise decrepit. Get enough artists together in one area and it can be marketed as a “colony”. Then the gays come in. They do all the houses up and make the neighborhood flourish with their higher disposable incomes and on-trend tastes. They don’t mind that the area is unsafe for children, since generally they don’t have them. Then the hipsters come, also without children. And then the rich yuppies. By then, the neighborhood has become safe for children again: private school children. Most of the people who built the community can no longer afford to live there and are no longer wanted. Then  comes the foreign money, looking for a blue chip home for their offshore investments. By this point the mortgages have been pooled and collateralized and synthesized and repackaged into bond and share offerings. The jobs left are service jobs, and if there is any art left is in high end galleries.

I’m sorry if anyone finds that description offensive, but it happens time and time again with such consistency that it cannot be coincidence. It is either a biological wiring, something in the DNA of humanity; or it is a long-term plan of social engineering – so successful that it keeps being repeated, regardless of the consequences. Hollywood itself began as one of these occult artists colonies. Qui bono? Follow the money. When an Oakland townhouse goes from $100,000 to $1 million, imagine what that does if you own 20-story buildings and entire city blocks.

My information is that the rent to be part of the Fruitvale Satya Yuga collective was $5,000 per month and the residents were paying $750 per month – which would be $15,000 per month if all 20 paid the same. If anyone can confirm or correct this please comment. The money clearly was not reinvested in safety, but it does indicate the potential real estate profits lurking darkly in the background of this and other tragic fires.

One resident, who had a fire extinguisher in hand and discarded it for a cat carrier, described the space as “amazing”, “beautiful”, and “family oriented”. YMMV.

Kelber woke up to hearing someone screaming “fire” and grabbed a fire extinguisher. She opened her gate and looked down the hallway and saw 15-foot flames, “a giant fireball.” 

She then tossed the fire extinguisher, realizing it wasn’t going to do her any good, and tried to grab her cat carrier from a loft area.

“I was almost knocked unconscious by the smoke,” she said. Then the power went out. The smoke pushed her window open, which let in air that fueled the fire.

She grabbed her cat and ran out. “The fire trucks still weren’t here so I went racing around the corner screaming ‘fire,’ carrying my cat.” 

Kelber and Frito said that they thought 22 or 23 people lived in the building, which was 10,000 square feet.

“It was one of the most amazing, beautiful spaces,” Kelber said.

She said somebody was always working on a different project, or cooking something.

“It was one of the most amazing, family-oriented spaces,” she said. “That’s why it was created.”

The idea that it is acceptable to have all night dance parties in family oriented spaces is not widely shared throughout the rest of the world. Even in Melbourne, arguably the world capital of warehouse parties, the “artists” would not try something like this. The police and family protection services would be there in a heartbeat. So why would it be socially acceptable in the San Francisco Bay Area?

This is an example of why the propaganda that “kids at Burning Man are fine” is dangerous. The argument goes like this: “All these smart billionaires go to Burning Man, and people take their kids to Burning Man, therefore it is smart to have all night dance parties around children”. This is a logical fallacy, a non sequitur.

I don’t see too many billionaires bringing their young children to Burning Man, why is that?

There is a great deal to be said for the good old-fashioned family unit. One man, one woman, and the biological children generated by mixing their genes together. Bringing the children up with good values, in an environment of love, promoting honesty and kindness. This model has taken humanity this far, why do we need to attack it? To go back to the Dark Ages? I am all for including other lifestyles, but surely nobody thinks it is OK that children lived in this place surrounded by skulls and occult imagery.

This music video was filmed at the Ghost Ship warehouse. It is full of occult symbolism and mind control visual techniques. The name “ROCChilds” seems like an almagamation of Rockefeller and Rothschild, as well as a nod to Illuminati rapper Jay-Z’s record label ROC-A-Fella records.

The song is not bad, with some impressive guitar work at the end. But the imagery is very concerning, in light of the holocaust that subsequently occurred at this temple to Shiva.

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Crypto-landlord Derick Ion Almena and his partner Micah Allison make a cameo in the video

Safety First: The Reality of Housing, Parties, and Legality in the Scene

izogkv3

Alright, listen Burners, while the facts continue to filter out about the disaster of Ghost Ship, the Oakland warehouse space that was reduced to ashes over the weekend, the swirling commentary, tidal wave of thinkpieces & classism masquerading as concern has (once again) missed the forest for the trees. The arguments about the responsibility of the owner, the problems with having parties at underground venues, and the nature of the community at the center of the tragedy are all aggressively useless. People can talk about “what parties should be” until the K-heads wake up, but there are realities that have forced event spaces to be the way they are for decades now. Those realities involve dollar signs, not lifestyle or philosophical choices. And, as someone that has actually made a “need a fire extinguisher to save an event from burning down” hand-off at 5 am at an underground warehouse, I hope you’ll trust that this isn’t going to be your standard anti-capitalist or anti-club rant.

Continue reading

BREAKING: Burning Man In Latest WikiLeaks Data Dump [Update]

wikileak2

[Update 11/26/16]
If you only follow the mainstream media, you might not be aware that over the last few months hundreds of thousands of emails have been released via Wikileaks, exposing all sorts of corruption and impropriety. After leaks about Clinton campaign chief John Podesta, the food-obsessed Podesta tweeted about Julian Assange’s diet.

Then Canadian bombshell Pamela Anderson showed up at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London with vegan food and a strange book.

The leak victims, who do not want things like what they said to Goldman Sachs for $675,000 exposed to the public, have accused the Wikileaks founder of being a pedophile and a Russian spy, as well as threatening him with murder.

[Update: Redditors have traced the origins of the pedophile plot to SF]

WikiLeaks sent out some cryptic file hashtags, suggesting a big dump was imminent.

Now nobody knows what happened to Julian; he is missing and feared dead. Ecuador cut off his Internet access temporarily, probably because now that the Internet’s addressing system is controlled by a tax-exempt Silicon Valley company, they can remove entire countries from the Net anytime they choose.

It appears those contingency plans include Burning Man.

WikiLeaks is now wide open to the world.

One of the files is called burning-man-paul-addis-message-2008.txt. It relates to Burning Man character the late Paul Addis, who burned The Man early on the night of a lunar eclipse and was charged with felony arson. There have long been Internet rumors, dismissed by some as conspiracy theories, that BMorg pressed hard for this to be prosecuted as a felony rather than a misdemeanor. You can read more about the case in our stories Monday is the New Saturday and Getting the Last Word: A Year After His Death, A Burner Speaks His Mind.

paul-addis-poster

Here is the leak in full:

https://file.wikileaks.org/file/burning-man-paul-addis-message-2008.txt

>Date: Wed, 2 Jul 2008 15:30:21 -0700
>Subject: [staff-announce] 2007 Arson Outcome
>
>By now most of you have probably heard the news that the perpetrator
>of the arson at the 2007 Burning Man event has plead guilty to the
>crime of second degree arson and has been sentenced to 12-48 months in
>jail, and ordered to pay restitution of $25,000 in damages to the
>Burning Man Organization.  Often times the news media doesn't always
>give the full backstory, so we're sending additional information to
>our staff because we believe that all of you who were affected by the
>arson have a right to know the full story.  Plus, every one of us is a
>representative of the Project, and we sometimes find ourselves being
>asked questions within the community about the organization's position
>on issues like this one.  In fact, some members of the staff have
>already asked a few questions about Burning Man's role in the arson,
>so we're going to address them here.  Please note that this email is
>being sent to staff only, and staff policies prevent cutting and
>pasting work emails to other online forums.  But, feel free to
>communicate the information contained in this email should others in
>the community inquire about the Organization's take on the outcome.
>
>Q: What was the Burning Man Organization's role in the prosecution of
>the defendant?
>
>A: The defendant was arrested by the Pershing County Sheriff's Office
>and faced charges in Nevada for First Degree Arson, Destruction of
>Property and Illegal Fireworks. The prosecutor had a choice to bring a
>full-blown trial and seek the maximum penalties for all of these
>charges, or to accept a plea-bargain for a reduced crime with a lesser
>sentence.  The prosecutor advised the Burning Man Organization that he
>believed a plea-bargain would be the best choice for all parties
>involved--the state, the defendant and the victim.  In the interests
>of justice and fairness, the Burning Man Organization agreed with the
>prosecutor that a lesser charge and a lighter sentence would be better
>for everyone, including the defendant.
>
>
>Q: What would have happened if the defendant had demanded a trial
>instead of plea-bargaining?
>
>A: The defendant could have been sentenced to nine years in jail for
>first-degree arson.
>
>
>Q: Could Burning Man have refused to press charges or refused to turn
>over receipts to the prosecution?
>
>A: Part of putting on the Burning Man event means maintaining good
>relations with Pershing County so that we can continue to have the
>Burning Man event on BLM land within that county.  Good relations
>means cooperating with criminal prosecutions.  Refusing to press
>charges for a felony arson that threatened human life would not bode
>well with the government and law enforcement agencies in Nevada that
>support our event.  Nor would it bode well with the participants and
>staff who could have been seriously injured or killed by this crime.
>Plus, if the Organization had not submitted receipts the prosecution
>would have subpoenaed them anyway.  Finally, there was enough evidence
>against the defendant for the County to prosecute without Burning Man
>pressing charges.
>
>
>Q: How did the Organization compute the restitution costs?
>
>A: Once the prosecutor requested the information, the Accounting
>Department compiled documentation of the following costs: lumber,
>hardware, burlap, wax, fabric, neon, labor, fuel, meals, delivery
>charges and heavy equipment use.  Because some receipts were not
>available, the Organization relied on the costs for the first build as
>evidence of what the costs of the second build were.  Of all the
>receipts that were available the total came to a little over $30,000.
>Based on the evidence submitted by the prosecution, as well as the
>good points raised by the defendant's counsel, the Court felt that
>$25,000 was a fair and reasonable amount.
>
>
>Q: What about the cost of the artwork under the Pavilion that was
>never exhibited due to the crime?
>
>A: The total cost of the art grants and the wages of the staff who
>worked so hard to get the projects on playa came to an additional
>$42,000 in documented costs.  However, criminal restitution only
>covers materials that were actually lost.  To recover these additional
>costs would require bringing a civil suit for destruction of property.
>
>
>Q: Is the Burning Man Organization going to pursue a civil suit
>against the defendant for the additional costs that were not recovered
>in the criminal sentencing?
>
>A: No.  The Organization feels that the defendant's plea bargain is a
>fair and just outcome for all parties involved.
>
>
>Q: So, how does the Organization feel about the sentence?
>
>A: An organization does not have feelings, of course - only the
>individual people within it do.  Like all of you, and the rest of the
>community, the staff and the board were diversely affected by the
>premature burn, and each of us has our own human response to the
>outcome.  Not one of us can speak for what everyone around here feels
>now that this chapter of our history ends, but we can say that we're
>uniformly glad to have this crime behind us, and we're looking forward
>to burning the Man together in 2008.
>
>
>Ray Allen
>Executive Project Manager
>Black Rock City, LLC
>1900 Third Street
>San Francisco, CA 94158-2502
>(415) 865-3800 x137
>ray@burningman.com
>
>"Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life's coming
>attractions."--Albert Einstein
>_______________________________________________
>staff-announce mailing list
>staff-announce@burningman.com
in an earlier prank, Addis hung some balls on the Man

in an earlier prank, Addis hung some balls on the Man

paul-addis-gonzo-gun

Addis did a Hunter S Thompson inspired one-man stage show

Stuart Mangrum, Paul Addis, Josh Babcock and Scott Beale in 1998

Burning Man’s original propaganda minister Stuart Mangrum, Paul Addis, Josh Babcock and Scott Beale in 1998


[Update 10/19/16 3:33pm]

ZeroHedge was confused about this leak.

Ed Opperman, former private investigator and host of The Opperman Report, cleared it up. He was interviewing a WikiLeaks contributor for his Friday show. He asked him about this leak:

screenshot-2016-10-19-15-34-47

screenshot-2016-10-19-16-05-33

Tune in to Ed’s show Friday 5pm PST to hear more about the WikiLeaks.

The Burning Man information in WikiLeaks may have been available for years, but AFAIK it has never been covered by alt- or official- or social- media before. This leak is brand new to our community. Is Assange a Burner?

The email is from anthropologist-attorney Ray Allen, who first attended Burning Man for Hellco and became the organization’s in-house legal counsel in 2004. He is giving secret “talking points” to their mailing list of employees and volunteer insiders. They specifically ask anyone reading it to not cut and paste anything from it online, but to use the information (conveniently presented in Q & A format) to answer any questions from Burners. Sorry BMorg, Wikileaks over-rode that.

There are some interesting comments in the leak, for those who have followed the details of this case.

  • “an organization does not have feelings” – a rare glimpse behind the curtain, revelaing the true feelings of this organization. It is heartless and Satanic, a corporation of many faces and few masters. It will live forever without paying tax, and can never go to jail. You voluntarily assume the risk of serious injury or death with your money . And it always wants more of your money. It doesn’t care about your feelings, it doesn’t care about the Ten Principles, it just doesn’t care. About anything or anyone.
  • “heavy equipment use” is ironic when they are the ones with the heavy equipment. So this is an internal charge.
  • “meals”? “fuel”? This should be about the cost of the things that were damaged. This item shows that they were trying to pile on everything they could think of to make the costs higher.
  • they say that the prosecution would have subpoena’d the receipts from them anyway. This is speculation, there is no guarantee that this was true. Even if it were, the prosecution may well have asked for receipts revelant to the crime like “timber” and “labor”, and not the “cost of the first build” expenses like “meals” and “fuel”. The choice to pile everything on seems quite clearly to be on the side of the Org, not Pershing County.
  • there was another $42,000 of potential damages that they couldn’t sue for because there was no actual damage. Umm, what?
  • the email to staff gives wording to make it sound like BMorg were being gracious by not pursuing an additional civil suit. In fact, for them to be plaintiffs in a civil suit would be a different beast entirely. They would have to commit to the legal costs, in the hope that they would win, and that the defendant would then be able to pay. It is quite likely that a trial would have cost a lot more than the damages, particularly given what BMorg likes to spend on lawyers. In the criminal case, the prosecution would have to convince the jury that he did it (everybody knew he did it), and a judge whether the appropriate punishment was a felony or a misdemeanor. In the civil case, BMorg as plaintiff would have to justify every one of these costs. And the defendant would have had the right to subpoena information from them, too.
  • They mention a few times the participants and staff that could have been killed or seriously injured by this crime. The perpetrator deliberately did it at a time of the event when few people were around, and the fire would be immediately seen and extinguished. Tuesday nights in 2007 were not like Tuesday nights in 2016. I was there, and in bed, because there was not very much even open in Black Rock City. Playing to fears of “the tragedy that could have been” is “war on terror”-style propaganda. In fact, nobody was harmed in any way by this Cacophonist prank, that got Burning Man media coverage all around the world – it would be easy to emphasize this, too. Meanwhile many participants are killed or seriously injured at Burning Man, every year. And, tragically, the consequence of this discordian action, hailed by many in the Burning Man community as heroic, was the ruining of this man’s life which ended with a messy suicide.

[Update 11/26/16] PIZZAGATE

6 weeks after this post first appeared, Julian Assange is still missing, presumed dead: silenced over PizzaGate. Whoever is in charge of WikiLeaks communications now is Tweeting “please stop asking for proof of life” – not a good sign.

The weekend before the 2016 Presidential Election, WikiLeaks said (via 4Chan“unless Hillary Clinton steps down immediately we are going to release the big one”. The Clinton team then came out and said “if anything big comes from WikiLeaks in the next few days, it’s probably fake”.

And then PizzaGate broke, not released by the formal WikiLeaks or Anonymous twitter channels…instead appearing practically overnight as a combination of meticulously compiled evidence on 4Chan and Reddit, archived in anticipation of content changes – which did immediately happen, as mysterious Beltway pizza parlors scrambled to remove FBI-classified pedophile symbols from their logos and privatize Instagram and Twitter accounts showing children in highly suspicious situations.

“White Hat” elements of the US Intelligence Community have claimed responsibility for the leaks:

Here is an excellent and comprehensive overview of the evidence:

Titus Frost is doing an excellent job of researching this story, please support him and follow his site for the latest updates.

More information on PizzaGate is available here.

How could this be related to Burning Man?

The Burning Man-related comment refers to PizzaPAC and PizzaPacket:

Podesta e-mail with HRC pizza logo (Design provided by James Alefantis) says to donate to “PizzaPAC.com” registered to one JZ Drizin;

Itchie gross is friends with the Drizin family, but I don’t believe Joel Zev Drizin has a facebook account. The person Podesta said to donate the money in the comet ping pong pizza email was @JZDRIZIN. His latest Retweet was from @PIZZAPACKET.
If you type JZDRIZIN into google you will find this linkhttp://vin.place/vin/jz-drizin.18395059.html
When searching his number you will gethttp://www.tzachlist.com/search/?t=2&location=Florida&page=12He goes by Zev Drizin, Zalmi Drizin, but mostly Joel Zev Drizin which explains his twitter handle.
http://www.breakout.today/the-stories/2016/2/2/sheida This article mentions Joel Zev Drizin and this lady who worked for him. Sheida Jafari worked for pizza packet and in this article it mentions work they did at the burning man occult festival if that’s what you want to call it.
Burning man was brought up in Wikileaks as well.

The linked story connects one of the peripheral pizza ping pong players to the theme camp IDEATE, which is heavily populated with people with ties to Washington DC and the Progressive power structure [full disclosure: I camped with them once about 5 years ago and didn’t notice any suspicious behavior, there were no children in the camp].

We have been sounding the alarm on children at Burning Man for some time – and we’re not the only ones with concerns about how this community where sex, drugs, and nudity are all abundant and free seems custom-made for pedophiles.

screenshot-2016-11-26-09-03-10

Pedophiles have been intercepted planning hunting expeditions to Burning Man. In 2013 Colorado police arrested a pedophile who had been plotting to take a child from Burning Man. In 2015 there was an arrest for kidnapping at Burning Man.

This year a false alarm Amber Alert prevented people from leaving the event for more than 8 hours, as a missing teenage girl was located with an older man. There was a previous Amber Alert in 2012.

There was also another incident this year when a man was caught trying to kidnap a small boy.

 

screenshot-2016-09-29-15-41-19

pedos-2016

 

In 2015 this “ironic prank” pedophile van on its way to Burning Man caused alarm in Sacramento:

Burning Man is the largest ritualized occult festival in the Western World. It is very philosophically aligned with Aleister Crowley, his disciple Timothy Leary, and “spirit cooking” witch Marina Abramovic.

The annual Burning Man event is based on the concept of the Temporary Autonomous Zone, created by Hakim Bey – aka Peter Lamborn Wilson. These are “Pirate Utopias” where people can do whatever they want and the regular rules of the outside world don’t apply. Google’s CEO thinks there need to be more of these special legal zones, like Burning Man:

Hakim Bey’s Wikipedia page says that he is a contributor to NAMBLA, the National American Man-Boy Love Association. Another public endorser of NAMBLA was Beat poet Allen Ginsberg. Fellow Beat William S Burroughs was also a pedophile, and Beat members such as Neal Cassady and Gregory Corso were recruited into this network when they were handsome-but-naughty young teenagers. The Beats had a huge influence on Burning Man and on San Francisco. They spawned the Merry Pranksters, which Burning Man’s Cacophony Society openly modeled themselves on. Prankster Stewart Brand has called Burning Man the complete fulfillment of everything they ever tried to do with the Acid Tests. Burning Man’s city design was created by Rod Garrett, who was part of the SF Beat scene since the Sixties. Son-of-a-beat Daniel Pinchbeck is one of the more publicly prominent and vocal members of the Burner scene.

Burning Man started next to SF’s Presidio military base, as did the Church of Satan. Later it moved to another military zone, the Lovelock Gunnery Range in the Black Rock Desert, Nevada. Temple of Set founder Michael Aquino was running psychological operations at the Presidio at the time that Burning Man kicked off. The early founders of Burning Man used to spend a lot of time exploring the underground tunnels and bunkers there, which are riddled with Satanic, Nazi, and LSD-related images and paraphernalia.

screenshot-2016-11-26-10-04-58

I get into Burning Man’s ties to Satanism, the Presidio and the occult in much more detail in my series Silicon Valley’s Secret Weapon – the Shadow History of Burners. Part 5 is ready to record and will be released soon.

 

 

 

 

White Ocean, Gabby Giffords & A Stand Alone Complex

White-Ocean

Editorial by Terry Gotham

Unless you’ve been under a really big, non-dusty rock, you’ve heard about the sabotage/accident/Tusken Raider attack at the White Ocean camp during Burning Man 2016. As my editor has reported, dozens of news outlets have reported on the story, big and small, from left wing to the Drudge Report. Lots of people have offered stories and explanations for what happened, but I think a lot of them miss the mark. I’d like to offer an explanation that draws on the commodification of Burning Man, the shooting of Gabby Giffords, and one of my favorite TV shows, Ghost In The Shell: Stand Alone Complex. We may never know who really did it and why, so let’s stop with the poorly supported, largely assumed narrative that’s been constructed by journalists since the man burned last weekend.

white-ocean-vandalized

If you’re not familiar with Ghost In The Shell, I highly recommend it. The movie, but even more so the 2 season show, explored the cybernetic & internet-everywhere world we’re hurtling towards as a species. In NeoTokyo, a “stand alone complex” occurs, a series of corporate hacks expose government corruption, blamed on a single actor sparking a movement and revolution in cyberspace. In reality, there’s no actual team of people with an agenda, things are happening totally independently of each other. However, because the internet is watching and being drawn along, never truly seeing the whole picture, the populace believes “something” is happening, when things aren’t. This is the nature of a stand alone complex. When you don’t have all the evidence, your mind draws whatever line through discrete events that makes sense.

The two competing stories so far have been class warfare vs. personal vendetta. On the class warfare side, White Ocean is a plug and play hotel for the elite. Bucket listers show up, hang out, get fucked up, Burn, party until the sunrises, then head home, have earned a tremendous amount of ire over the last couple of years. White Ocean has attempted to defray the concerns that they cater to the elites by discussing the size of their speaker system and the fact that they feed Burners. Many have spent time debating who actually gets fed at White Ocean, and of course, there are a miasma of opinions surrounding the deployment of EDM/commercial DJs to the playa, so I won’t belabor their points. While the case is slowly building that they can provide benefit to the greater playa, the idea of Burning Man VIP is a sticky accusation that many elite camps have done a poor job defending against. Plenty of people have come to the defense of White Ocean because they camp in similar levels of comfort, but I wanted to point out that there are plenty of uber wealthy/influential people who don’t earn that kind of scorn. Susans Sarandon shows up, works, and then has a ceremony using the Temple honorably and in a way that invited participation. Some of David Bowie’s ashes were burned at the Temple this year as well. I assume everyone associated with that was decently well off, and somehow, they managed to be respectful to the wider playa community and be wealthy at the same time.

The other side is that White Ocean stiffed a bunch of workers, so the workers retaliated. Not because of the revolution, but because “Fuck you I want my check.” This explanation tends to hold water once the facts of the sabotage are reviewed. It’s really difficult to do the level of damage that occurred at a camp without being seen, and White Ocean had actual guards posted in their camp. The idea that some socialist Solid Snake infiltrated the camp, wasn’t seen by anyone, and made off after doing so, is a reach even for the guys I hear on playa detailing the underground cities and hyperloop transports the government has created in case of nuclear war. If you saw a cook or a campmate wandering around you camp, you wouldn’t think anything of it.  I assume White Ocean didn’t exactly broadcast that they stiffed these people, so the camp wasn’t on high alert. If a couple of peeps were really burnt about getting stiffed, it would’ve been trivially easy to do what happened to White Ocean, without being flagged as an intruder. But, here’s the thing, people don’t believe that, because they’ve built this pre-existing narrative about class warfare over the attacks, and see a Stand Alone Complex, where there is none.

I want to emphasize that doing this is not only human nature, but also how we evolved. The ability to recognize patterns with incomplete data kept us alive in the jungle, and helped teach us how to farm. Some of the highest paying jobs in Silicon Valley are for people who can spot patterns in data that no one else can. So it’s no surprise that everyone & their mom has tried to figure out why sabotage and why White Ocean. But, as Freud says, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. We increasingly live in a world where people will have access to massive amounts of data, that still provide an incomplete picture. This causes us to have faith in the model/trend line we built, but that doesn’t mean it’s anymore correct than it was when we saw “predator eyes” on a leaf instead of a moth and ran like scared apes 125,000 years ago.

Lots of people are talking about class warfare as if there’s some directed attempt to stoke socioeconomic resentment by certain groups on the playa, and when I read this stuff, I keep thinking back to how quickly we lost the plot after Gabby Giffords (US Congresswoman from AZ) was shot in 2011. The shooter, diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia after years of drug abuse, was convicted of the mass shooting, but also totally dehumanized as a puppet of the NRA, or a martyr for states rights. First came the ham-handed attempts to blame Fox News & Sarah Palin, ensuring that a nuanced discussion about how incendiary rhetoric affects the public consciousness would never happen. Then, the rush to demonization of the shooter as a super-villain, cold and calculating, fighting as a standard bearer for all that the NRA/GOP/your arch nemesis stood for. This guaranteed the discourse devolved into team sport, talk radio, and Facebook sparring. Someone shot a sitting Congressperson and not a single policy change came out of it. That’s startling to me, even to this day.

I’m seeing this happen right now in the comment threads, think pieces and tweet storms about White Ocean. Not only are large numbers of people hailing this person as some kind of working class hero, but the real problems of turnkey camps are taking a back seat to faux outrage and slap fights. Let’s be real, unless you were camping at White Ocean, this problem does not affect you. Period. It’s not a portend of violence to come, and it’s not going to filter into open “rebellion” on playa, so we all need to dial this pearl clutching back. While we’re being real, I’m not going to spend a lot of time being terrified that a camp for people who live in the Capitol of The Hunger Games was fucked with. Even in the worst case scenario, how long would it take White Ocean to get resupplied, via air if necessary? An hour? Two? Five? While the average burner would be fucked by this event, I’m still not clear on how this could have been anything but a minor annoyance. Not because you’re turn-key, like the White Ocean FB post said they were told by BMOrg, but because you’re FABULOUSLY WEALTHY. If how much you spend at Burning Man doesn’t even appear as a line on your yearly budget, I have no doubt contingencies existed to ensure no harm came to anyone at the camp. And if they didn’t, after this attack, I assume all turn key camps will simply bake that contingency plan cost into the price of your FuturePod or whatever the package will be called next year.

White Ocean isn’t closing up shop, no other turn key camps have announced they won’t be returning to the playa because of it, so, that aspect of the burn won’t change. And, considering their blotches of red on the MOOP Map from 2015, 9 days out, I hope they did better this year, as it seems we all have progress to make. As for the likely saboteurs, I’m a fiesty fucker, but even I’m not trying to pick a fight with rich Saudis or Russians. I truly hope law enforcement finds the culprit before they do.

At the end of the day, many are using this event to push a narrative that they most likely held before the event happened. I heard a lot of people talk about how horrifying this attack was, not realizing just how much more they spend on their average Burn than many Burners out there. The same thing happens when the poor start cheering for destruction and rebellion, not realizing that they’re actively calling for terrorism against people who, you know, work there. I found it terrifying that people were advocating for harm/further attacks/sabotage against these camps, totally glossing over a lot of people at these camps are either non-rich guests, paid staff, or simply tourists. The idea that they’d be forced to suffer simply to make a point about participation or “the priniciples” is some Daesh level bullshit. Both sides have put their insecurities on display, and are using the same event to advance their own agenda. Hopefully something like this doesn’t happen next year, but if it does, let’s try and keep a clear head about it next time.

Shadow History of Burners Part 4 – Occult Rituals of the Cult

How did Burning Man begin? Larry Harvey says “I don’t really remember” and “I’ve got all these stories I tell”. Only 2 of the current ruling group ever went to Burning Man on the beach. On Michael Mikel’s official Burning Man bio, it says he joined in 1988. However, in court testimony in the 2007 John Law suit, it was established that nobody from the Cacophony Society attended any Burning Man events until 1989. Should we believe Burning Man’s web site, or statements in a Court of Law?  Incidentally, in this case the court heard testimony from Stuart Mangrum that Mikel was not telling the truth.

In the “official” history, as recorded by Brian Doherty and others, an artist named Mary Grauberger was burning statues on the beach on the solstice. However, Mary insists that she wasn’t. Her roommate Janet Lohr, Larry’s long time girlfriend, said Mary sometimes made driftwood sculptures for the tide to reclaim, but never effigies to burn.

In earlier interviews, Larry Harvey claimed a number of times that Burning Man began in 1985.

So what really happened? Who was burning a Wicker Man on the beach in 1985?

After 4 years of research, I have finally uncovered the true story of the origins of Burning Man.

Download the PowerPoint file with notes and citations here