Ray Dalio, hedge fund founder and CT's richest resident, parties at Burning Man
They are both megamillionaires from Greenwich, leaders in their respective fields and hailing from buttoned-down Connecticut.
Buttoned down? Hedge fund billionaire Ray Dalio and Gov. Ned Lamont were anything but that over the last few days.
Dalio, founder and chairman of Bridgewater Associates in Westport, said to be the world's largest hedge fund, tweeted a wide-grinning picture of himself with "my pal and co-worker Jeff Taylor" at Burning Man in the Nevada desert. He's wearing an outfit that would make Doc Severinsen, the wild-dressing band leader on Johnny Carson's Tonight Show, blush.
Dalio, 70, sports a three-quarter length coat, blue and purple abstract design with blue faux fur fringes and big brass buttons, over bell-bottom pants with a swirling print vaguely inspired by the sea, and a tie-dyed shirt that seems to have a little face on it, if you strain hard enough.
Just back from Burning Man. Reminds me of Woodstock with better art (installations) and less good music. What a great vibe and what amazing creativity!— Ray Dalio (@RayDalio) September 2, 2019
Photo is with my pal and coworker Jeff Taylor at his great music camp Root Society. If you go next year, 1-5am is best. pic.twitter.com/ua5UIbRlxo
Taylor, now an executive at Bridgewater, founded Monster.com and later worked as a DJ and social media entrepreneur. An interesting chap for a different day.
“Just back from Burning Man. Reminds me of Woodstock with better art (installations) and less good music,” Dalio wrote on Twitter. “What a great vibe and what amazing creativity!”
The twittosphere mostly went along with the fun, with some jabbing at these two guys in their wild moments. “Uh oh. If @raydalio is at Burning Man we just be near a market top,” one wrote. Others slammed Burning Man, once a spontaneous weekend of energy, as a playground for the ultra-rich, “Davos in the Desert.”
Recently retired from day-to-day operations at Bridgewater, Dalio is known for treatises on LinkedIn and in a best-selling book challenging conventional thinking. This past April: The man said by Forbes to be worth $18 billion, explained his earlier comment that capitalism isn’t working in large part because of inequality.
That very same day in East Hartford, Dalio unfurled a $100 million gift from the foundation run by him and his wife, Barbara — no sign of her at Burning Man — to the state of Connecticut to help with public education. That made him Lamont’s new BFF and it pissed off liberals and conservatives upset that the new partnership, with $100 million from the state, won’t be fully public in its meetings.
Lamont, who hired former Dalio lieutenant Ryan Drajewicz as his chief of staff, started the Labor Day weekend of post-hippie debauchery with some tie-dyed fashion of his own. At the Woodstock Fair, he presided over his Nedstock battle of the bands for charity and nostalgia. Take a look at the video by Hearst’s Kaitlyn Krasselt if you missed it.
Dalio was at Lamont’s inauguration in January, the scene of more wild dancing, but there’s no video of the billionaire cutting a rug. This much we can say for Lamont and Dalio. They’re having fun out there, and that can’t hurt the ailing state where they live.