Burning Man at 30: Where the super-rich network in the nude

You know that Burning Man — the crazy, naked, candy-flipping, nostalgie de la boue in the Nevada desert – is attracting too many billionaires when the socialist press starts publishing hit pieces.

“Burning Man became a festival that rich libertarians love because it never had a radical critique at its core,” Keith Spencer writes in Jacobin, a New York-based socialist magazine with excellent design and occasionally good, academic-ish articles – if you are into that sort of thing.

“In principle the annual Burning Man festival sounds a bit like a socialist utopia: bring thousands of people to an empty desert to create an alternative society. Ban money and advertisements and make it a gift economy. Encourage members to bring the necessary ingredients of this new world with them, according to their ability…Yet capitalists also unironically love Burning Man,” Spencer continues.

And how right he is. The super-rich love a super party and this is the biggest fete of them all — wilder than East Hampton in August or St Bart’s on New Year’s.

Burning Man, which turns 30 this year, attracts folks like Mark Zuckerberg, Larry Page, Grover Norquist, a bunch of NYC real estate bros and Elon Musk. Jacobin also claims that “many writers of the libertarian (and Koch-funded) Reason magazine” are attendees. Shudder – I guess.

In 2014, Jim Tananbaum, CEO of Foresite Capital, threw a $16,500 a head party at Burning Man, which many claim caused the festival to jump the shark. But despite the neigh-sayers the party still rages on. Here is a look at this year’s antics.

Lets start with Paris Hilton making dust angels.

Here is a wider look at this year’s festival complete with EDM, drones and bicycles.


A video posted by @justsnippet on

This Polish model is enjoying a well-deserved pillow fight.

This Is War🙈😂🙅🏽#trifucta #burningman2016 #nathinburningman #amazing #fun

A photo posted by NATALIA SIWIEC Official❎ (@nataliasiwiec.official) on

Meet “selfie man.”

Strike a pose with #ourman2016 #burningman2016

A photo posted by Mark Hinkins (@hinkinsmark) on

It wouldn’t be Burning Man without a “certified drone operator.”

And finally, “cutting edge cosmic couture made 4 intergalactic time travel.”

  • Sam2001

    Black Rock Desert, site of “Burning Man” is North of Reno, in the state of Nevada, NOT Utah. Then again, it is “fly-over country” and no one bi-coastal really cares.

    • ChrisC

      Thank you for your comment. We’ve corrected the post.