Man, there's so much to debate on about whether or not BurningMan sucks.. but the reality is that as Burning Man becomes larger, you develop a condition where:
More People = Less Personal Responsibility
Studies show that humans, like wolves, dogs, rats, and other animals, are indeed pack animals. Everything2.com explains the phenomenon as such:
People are designed to live in packs. There is speculation that our brains are the size that they are just so we can cope with our social position to each individual in a group â€” the brain size of animals scales linearly with the size of the packs that they roam in. From this scale, humans are ideally suited to live in groups of one hundred and fifty people.
Funnily enough, this is the basic size of a platoon in the Army. Itâ€™s the point at which a small company becomes a large company with hierarchy. Itâ€™s the point where people stop being your neighbours and become strangers. Basically, itâ€™s the point you stop knowing everyone.
While you don't have to know everyone in BM, I've noticed a trend towards less personal responsibility. Case in point - every morning when we made MOOP rounds of our theme camp, there were hundreds of empty water bottles, trash and various questionable items lying in the dust (used condoms, blinkies, fans, keys, etc.) In years past, people packed their trash home with them after a night, but recently, it seems that the larger BM has gotten, people have taken on the mentality of .. "someone else will clean it up" because I have no connection to the camp I'm visiting.
If I've ever bitched about anything regarding BM, it's one thing.. it's become the mainstream THING TO DO. People at work asked me about the man burning on Monday and was there *sex* and naked girls?? What? Burning man on CNN? An article in Business 2.0? Burning Man TV?
We have become a city. A large city. And in a city where you don't know your neighbor(s).. there are some that absolve themselves of personal responsibility to the community because they've become anonymous. They can trash the place and feel nothing for it.
I find myself having to defend the Man and the community. No, it's not a drug fueled sex party in the desert. No, it was green man this year.. yep, solar powered.. oh, you mean the huge fireball... well, no, that wasn't very green, but.... well, we rebuilt the man after the torching.. etc.
I don't believe in limiting who can come or who can't but I do think that BM should lock the gates on Wednesday/Thursday and reopen them on Sunday night, making it less likely that the weekender who read about this crazy party in the desert as a *must see* event (a glossy ad for fun things to do around America) rents an RV, drives out on Saturday, catches college football on his satellite dish, watches the burn from top of RV, dumps out his greywater the next day, Pro football on sunday, and drives off before the Temple Burn. As he drives off, he yells, Great Burn!
And I didn't even know his name. But I ended up cleaning up his moop.
<sarcasm> Oh well, maybe next year I'll just leave the moop there. And let someone ELSE deal with it. </sarcasm>