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Do Libertarians Love Burning Man? - Input Junkie
August 26th, 2015
07:43 am


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Do Libertarians Love Burning Man?
Question inspired by this, which argues that Burning Man is being damaged by the covert capitalism of allowing labor which is paid off-site (probably true), that the abusive nature of the practice is especially pure capitalism (not obviously true, but it's hard to argue with people about the essential nature of whatever), and which states that libertarians love Burning Man.

There's also a claim (probably plausible, but I don't have the background to be sure) that people (Americans?) are bad at acknowledging that working for money is selling labor.

Personally, I'm just cranky that labor which is not sold (what people do for themselves and for other people for free) isn't considered in the GDP. "Hard to measure" is not a good enough excuse.

If you are a libertarian, do you love Burning Man?


If you are not a libertarian, feel free to talk about Burning Man in the comments. If you want to talk about libertarians, please say something about your sources of information about libertarians. If all your sources are people who hate libertarians, consider the possibility that you aren't an expert on the subject.

I'm a libertarian. I don't love Burning Man. Let me count the ways. Some of this is personal-- I don't like being overheated, I don't like loud noise, and I just don't run at the necessary energy level. However, I think there's some ideological repulsion too-- Burning Man is just not libertarian because commerce isn't permitted. This doesn't mean I'm opposed to Burning Man, but it isn't my flavor of utopia.

Also posted to Dreamwidth.

(6 comments | Leave a comment)

(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]
Date:August 27th, 2015 03:17 pm (UTC)
I'm not a libertarian and I despise Burning Man for mainly environmental reasons but also because of its narcissicistic culture (we get exposed to a lot of Burning Man habitues in this area)
[User Picture]
Date:August 27th, 2015 03:40 pm (UTC)
I just saw an article detailing a police crackdown at Burning Man, and actually that scene mirrors my idea of hell. Camping in a hot dusty desert with thousands of hipsters? Burning all the junk that you hauled in as the great finale?

[User Picture]
Date:August 27th, 2015 04:28 pm (UTC)
I just want to say that I find the appeal of Burning Man to be inexplicable. Descriptions of it come across as of a multi-day avant-garde art installation. That sounds like something I might casually enjoy wandering around for a couple of hours, but of no more interest than that: not to live in for days on end, and certainly not to go out a full day's drive in the desert for in the height of summer. (The last time I was in the desert at that time of year was for the Worldcon in Phoenix in 1978, and even though that was largely indoors I determined never to return to southern Arizona - or Nevada or any other such place - at any season other than winter, and I never have.)
[User Picture]
Date:August 27th, 2015 07:17 pm (UTC)
Burning Man gets favorable mentions in Reason magazine occasionally, so apparently some libertarians like it. I'm a libertarian but have no real opinion of it. I'd avoid it personally, for the same reason I avoid Pennsic. That counts as "not loving" it, so I'll answer "no" on the poll.
[User Picture]
Date:August 27th, 2015 10:47 pm (UTC)
I'm a libertarian and I have no objections to Burning Man. I wouldn't go, because I would quickly become a burning man myself. But I have friends who enjoy such events and I'm all for them having the opportunity.

Yeah, I think the "no commerce" rule is stupid. But letting people set up an area with their experimental rules and letting others walk in and out as they choose is freedom. I'm all for experiments.
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