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Burning Man 2020 is Cancelled and Replaced With Virtual Event in ‘The Multiverse’

The organizers asked for donations to help keep the business afloat during the pandemic.

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(TMU) — Burning man is one of the largest festivals in the United States and it was scheduled to take place this year between August 30 and September 7.

With nearly every large event in the country this year being canceled, it seemed that it was only a matter of time before Burning Man made an official cancellation announcement as well.

On Friday, a statement on the official Burning Man blog shared news of the event’s cancellation and announced a virtual event in ‘The Multiverse’ as a replacement.

Many other large festivals have also announced virtual events as consolations, including Excision’s Lost Lands festival which announced a livestreamed festival called “Couch Lands” earlier this week.

Burning Man’s statement was accompanied by a video message from CEO Marian Goodell, who offered refunds to attendees that are strapped for cash and pleaded with more wealthy customers to consider their ticket purchase a donation.

There was also a lengthy plea for money and support in the statement posted on their blog. They say that the donations will go towards keeping employees paid, ensuring that they are able to recreate Burning Man again once they are able to.

The company behind Burning Man does have a rainy day fund of $10 million, but they said that the budget needed to address this current crisis will far exceed that amount.

“Financial challenges aside, we are optimistic about Burning Man’s future and what The Multiverse will reveal in the year ahead: a chance to explore new ways of connecting and convening online, deepen our commitment to environmental sustainability, realign our partnership with the Bureau of Land Management, and create new and meaningful pathways for the community to connect and collaborate, especially during the coronavirus (COVID-19),” the statement read.

Even though the festival is several months away, the statement noted that they wanted to make the announcement as far in advance as possible because of how much planning goes into a Burning Man trip.

“Waiting would only cost the participants, the organization and the various cooperating agencies money and time, though truth be told we did wait as long as we could to make this decision. The time is now,” the statement read.

Answers to a few frequently asked questions were also posted on the blog, including an uneasy recognition that the current pandemic could possibly have an impact on plans for Burning Man 2021.

“We don’t know what the public health situation will be a year from now, or what impact the pandemic will have had by then on our participants, our organization, or the global economy. It will also depend on whether the Bureau of Land Management, our permitting authority, is willing to work with us in a more collaborative manner,” the statement read.

Burning Man’s future at Black Rock City has been uncertain in recent years as the government agencies in control of the land have continued to increase the already sizable fees that the organization pays for permission to hold the event in the publicly-owned territory.

By John Vibes | Creative Commons | TheMindUnleashed.com

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FBI Seizes Capitol Building LEGO Set From Alleged Rioter’s House

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Many of us know, either from our childhood or even our adulthood, that building and collecting LEGO can be a fun hobby that allows us to tap into our creativity in a relaxing, stress-free way.

But what if someone’s LEGO hobby is something much more nefarious – or even seditious in the eyes of the government?

Such may have been the case when special agents with the FBI confiscated a fully completed LEGO set of the U.S. Capitol Building from the home of Robert Morss, 27, whom they allege participated in the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection, according to court documents published by The Smoking Gun.

The large LEGO set is comprised of 1,032 pieces and was released in 2016 and is no longer available for retail. The agents seized the finished set along with other items matching those they believe Morss had in his possession when he allegedly stormed the building – including a neck gaiter, a “Don’t Tread on Me” flag, a military-style satchel, a black tourniquet, and military battle dress uniforms.

The documents also note that he “had three different firearms including a handgun, a shotgun and a rifle” in his possession.

According to LEGO, the United States Capitol Building setfocuses on the structure’s neoclassical style facade, steps and lawns” and is “finished with a decorative ‘US Capitol’ nameplate.” In 2019, the product was “retired” – which has less to do with politics and more to do with the limited availability of the company’s unique product lines.

Morss, who is from Pennsylvania, was arrested last month on a range of federal charges. According to the Department of Justice, his alleged crimesinclude assaulting, resisting or impeding certain officers; obstruction of an official proceeding; civil disorder; and robbery of personal property of the United States.”

An FBI investigator’s affidavit notes that Morss joined rioters in direct confrontations with officers guarding the Lower West Terrace doors of the Capital in “an intense and prolonged clash between rioters and law enforcement.”

Law enforcement officers claim that they also found a notebook in Morss car that had instructions on a “Step by Step to Create Hometown Militia” that included a list of names, equipment, and sections on “ambush,” “battle drills,” and “formations.” The notebook also contained notes that said “bring assault rifle,” “4 magazines,” and “bring kit/body armor.”

However, the court documents do not indicate whether the LEGO set was deployed in tactical drills prior to the botched uprising.

The DOJ says that roughly 465 individuals have been arrested on charges related the events of Jan. 6.

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Neptune, the Roman God of Water, ‘Emerges’ From Waves in Photo During UK Storm

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If we were to believe our eyes, it would seem that the ancient Roman god of water himself made an appearance on the shores of New Haven, England, on a day of especially rough surf.

What appears to be the “face” of Neptune was captured on Tuesday when photographer Jeff Overs of the BBC was taking photos of waves crashing over the harbor wall in the port city.

Of course, one is free to believe that the ferocious deity emanated from the depths of the sea to remind us puny humans of his wrath.

But alas, it was likely a simple example of pareidolia – the phenomenon of seeing faces and figures in otherwise random or ambiguous everyday objects.

The photographer snapped the shot amid high tide and winds exceeding 50 miles per hour (80km/h), namely because of the violent nature of the shore.

“It’s become a popular location for photographers because the sea ‘boils’ in high wind against the sea wall,” Overs explained.

“The waves splash into the high wind and when blown back occasionally make patterns that look like ghoulish faces.”

Overs added that one of the small foreground waves even resembles a hand – albeit a pareidolic one.

“It’s a straight shot and I haven’t manipulated the image at all,” he added.

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Lunar New Deal: GOP Lawmaker Suggests Altering Moon & Earth’s Orbit to Stop Climate Change

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Texas Republican Congressman Louise Gohmert raised the eyebrows of his Congressional colleagues on Tuesday after seemingly suggesting that climate change could be combatted by changing the orbit of the moon, or even altering “Earth’s orbit around the sun.”

Gohmert, who has been decried as the “dumbest member of Congress” for his past absurdly anti-scientific comments regarding the ongoing pandemic and a number of other issues, has been a vocal opponent of progressive legislators’ attempts to put a “Green New Deal” on the government’s agenda.

However, his apparent suggestion of a “Lunar New Deal” to mitigate global warming could take the cake as his most hare-brained idea yet.

The comments came during a House Natural Resources Committee hearing on four pending bills while questioning Jennifer Eberlien of the Department of Agriculture’s Forest Service, reports NBC.

“I understand, from what’s been testified to the Forest Service and the B.L.M. [Bureau of Land Management], you want very much to work on the issue of climate change,” the Texas congressman began.

“I was informed by the immediate past director of NASA that they’ve found that the moon’s orbit is changing slightly and so is the Earth’s orbit around the sun,” he continued.

“We know there’s been significant solar flare activity,” Gohmert said. “And so, is there anything that the National Forest Service or B.L.M. can do to change the course of the moon’s orbit or the Earth’s orbit around the sun?”

“Obviously that would have profound effects on our climate,” the lawmaker added.

Responding, Eberlein said with a smile: “I would have to follow up with on you on that one, Mr. Gohmert.” 

“If you figure out there’s a way in the forest service you could make that change, I’d like to know,” Gohmert responded, without any trace of irony.

Longtime critics of the conservative legislator were besides themselves with bewilderment and mockery over the out-of-this-world suggestion.

On the opposite side of the aisle California Democratic Congressman Ted Lieu suggested that perhaps Marvel Comics superheroine Captain Marvel was up to the task.

“She can alter planetary orbits with her superpowers. I’m going to work on a bipartisan resolution asking for her help,” Lieu wrote on Twitter.

According to NASA, the Earth’s climate has changed throughout history for various reasons, including small variations in the planet’s orbit.

However, the agency’s website notes that this doesn’t discount the fact that anthropogenic or human-caused activities are the culprit of the current warming.

“The current warming trend is of particular significance because most of it is extremely likely (greater than 95 percent probability) to be the result of human activity since the mid-20th century and proceeding at a rate that is unprecedented over millennia,” the site says.

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