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Grover Norquist on why he's going to Burning Man




Grover Norquist speaks on a panel during the 41st annual Conservative Political Action Conference at the Gaylord International Hotel and Conference Center on March 8, 2014 in National Harbor, Maryland. The conference, a project of the American Conservative Union, brings together conservatives politicians, pundits and voters for three days of speeches and workshops.
Grover Norquist speaks on a panel during the 41st annual Conservative Political Action Conference at the Gaylord International Hotel and Conference Center on March 8, 2014 in National Harbor, Maryland. The conference, a project of the American Conservative Union, brings together conservatives politicians, pundits and voters for three days of speeches and workshops.
T.J. Kirkpatrick/Getty Images

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Grover Norquist is going to Burning Man.

The 57-year-old anti-tax agitator and founder of Americans for Tax Reform - a conservative icon - will be attending a bacchanalian drug-fueled nudie art party in the Nevada desert. So does this mean, as Vanity Fair proclaimed, that Burning Man is dead?

"That's ridiculous," said Norquist on Take Two Show. "Burning Man has 10 principles. One of them is radical inclusion. The people who think that others shouldn't be included should move on and do something else. They seem to think this is their treehouse, and they should keep other people out, or they should tell other people how to run their lives. They shouldn't be involved in a dramatic and radical experiment whose first principal in inclusion.""

Norquist said he was turned on to Burning Man when he was invited by co-founder Larry Harvey, when the two met in Washington, D.C. He couldn't attend that year in 2012 because the Republican National Convention was held the same weekend.

Norquist tweeted at the time, "Which idiot put the GOP convention the same time as 'Burning Man' in Nevada? Is there time to change this?"

"I've always been interested in Burning Man," said Norquist. "It's a collection of people. The government doesn't organize it. People voluntarily organize it. It's exactly the type of thing that free people ought to be doing."

Norquist said his anti-tax campaign has been waged to maximize people's freedom. What they choose to do with that freedom should be up to them.

"I'm in favor of everyone having the right to be free whether they want to be Warren Buffett and go make money all day or whether they want to be Mother Theresa or something in between," he said. 

And when it comes to Burning Man's notorious penchant for nakedness and drugs? 

"I usually wear clothes during the day," Norquist assured. "I think many things should be legal that I don't do. I'm just going to go and be me. I'm bringing my wife along, or my wife is bringing me along. So we'll have fun, together."