Grover Norquist, one of the few remotely sane individuals in the political arena, recently made an announcement that he was going to be attending this year’s Burning Man Festival in Nevada. Despite being firmly anti-government on most issues, Norguist is still involved with the political process, which would make it seem unlikely that he would find himself at a place like Burning Man. Norquist however, says that Burning Man is a living example of the type of society that he would like to see on this planet.
In a recent interview he explained that “There’s no government that organizes this. That’s what happens when nobody tells you what to do. You just figure it out. So Burning Man is a refutation of the argument that the state has a place in nature.”
Norquist is best known for his work as the president of Americans for Tax Reform, which was founded in 1985, the same year as Burning Man.
In relation to his views on the state, Norquist was once quoted as saying “I’m not in favor of abolishing the government. I just want to shrink it down to the size where we can drown it in the bathtub.”
It seems that from many of his comments, Norquist is an Anarchist who takes the approach of “working within the system”. Personally, I am not an advocate of working from within the system, I actually think that it is a counter productive approach. However, it is good to see people who come from a more establishment background, understanding the value in both Burning Man, and Anarchism
Despite the free culture and atmosphere, Norquist will notice a heavy police state surrounding the area, and even inside the festival. In recent years police have been invading private events like Burning Man, in hopes of cashing in on large numbers of drug arrests.
Norquist’s trip to Burning Man is symbolic of a growth that people from all political backgrounds are currently experiencing, where they are finding similarities with people from different perspectives and breaking cultural boundaries in the process.
Burning man is scheduled to kick off on August 25, and will last throughout the week until September 1st.