The annual hippie festival known as Burning Man kicked off a few days ago. Thousands of self-described "artists, makers, and community organizers" descended upon Nevada's Black Rock desert for the event, which is guided by the ten principles originally articulated by its founders nearly 40 years ago. These include "radical inclusion," "decommodification," and "radical self-expression." Yep, they're Lefties alright.
But there are those who think they're not Leftist enough. That's what attendees discovered this year as they sat in miles of dead-stop traffic because protestors from a group called Seven Circles had blocked the only road to the event, chaining themselves to a trailer while surrounded by painted signs reading things like “Abolish Capitalism” and “General Strike for Climate." The New York Post's report explains their rationale, such as it is:
The group says the protest was designed to draw attention to “capitalism’s inability to address climate’s ecological breakdown..." Seven Circles specifically claims that the annual arts and counter-culture festival’s goal of being carbon-negative by 2030 is “insufficient to tackle the pressing crisis.” It argues that Burning Man’s apolitical stance is “detrimental to its claimed values, especially as carbon emissions continue to rise."
"Apolitical" is a bit of a stretch -- once again, the type of people who attend this event tend to think of the Holodomor as sensible resource management, and that Comrade Stalin's only fault was that he didn't go far enough.
Now, the "burners" (along with a few locals, who had nothing to do with the festival) didn't entirely take this sitting down. Several of them confronted the protestors, shouting at them, trying to push them and their trailer out of the way, but without much success. A few of them tried to drive around the barricade, only to have protestors stand in the way, daring the drivers to run them down. Anyone who has paid attention to the Extinction Rebellion and Just Stop Oil protests in Britain will recognize these tactics. But one thing that they don't have in Britain are police officers who are willing to do their job to defend public order. Thankfully -- as we got to see -- they do in the Black Rock desert.
There are multiple videos of this, from different angles, and that's helpful for seeing exactly how no-nonsense these cops are. The cops drive up and say what needs to be said: "Disband. Get off the highway. This is a state route. Everybody will be arrested if not. [You have] thirty seconds, send your leader to my vehicle, let's talk. Get off the f***kin' road." Shortly thereafter they drive right through the road block and arrest everyone.
The best part about it is that these weren't Nevada State Troopers. They were the Tribal Rangers of the local Pyramid Lake Paiute Reservation. As David Burge pointed out on Twitter, "Native American cops busting up a standoff between two tribes of white progressives is straight up comedy gold."
That's got to sting. Environmentalists like to think of themselves as being in the tradition of the American Indians, the "noble savages" imagined by the intellectual founder of their movement, Jean-Jacques Rousseau. Except the extent of their knowledge of Native Americans is that "Crying Indian" ad from the 1970s. (Which is only slightly better than what Rousseau himself knew of them, by the way). And Leftists more generally tend to subscribe to a philosophy of intersectionality, which has at its root the belief that all "marginalized" identities have a common enemy -- white men -- who are their constant oppressors.
Well these activists have just had that misapprehension smashed up along with their trailer. While they were used to getting the kid-glove treatment in liberal enclaves like San Francisco or Washington, D.C., in this instance, they were "trespassing on Tribal Land!" as one of the Rangers informed an activist. And so they got to see tribal justice in action.
Meanwhile, this is what Burning Man has become:
- Officials say over 70,000 people are stranded in the Nevada desert after heavy rains swamped the annual Burning Man festival, leaving thick, ankle-deep mud.
- Attendees were told to shelter in place in the Black Rock Desert and conserve food, water and fuel, but some have chosen to hike out of the desert. Officials have halted all traffic in and out of the festival, aside from emergency vehicles.
- Authorities are investigating a death "which occurred during this rain event," according to the sheriff's office — though it is unclear if the death was related to the storms.
- The remote event site in northwest Nevada was hit with 2 to 3 months’ worth of rain in just 24 hours from Friday to Saturday morning. More is anticipated Sunday afternoon.
Have fun, kids.