David Nolan 1943 - 2010
I had the pleasure of meeting David Nolan and watching him debate during the 2006 AZ CD-8 election where he sparred with Arizona Senator Gabrielle Giffords and former Arizona Rep. Randy Graf. Nolan was a delight to both see and hear, and I learned when we were young we shared very similar sentiments.
We were both avid science fiction fans during high school, in particular enjoying the works of Robert Heinlein, agreeing that Heinlein's best was, no, not the best selling Stranger in Strange Land (1961), but in fact Time Enough for Love (1973), which features the Notebooks of Lazarus Long, "Anyone who cannot cope with mathematics is not fully human. At best he is a tolerable subhuman who has learned to wear shoes, bathe, and not make messes in the house."
In high school we were Ayn Rand devotees (he more or less remained one). He chose what is generally considered the preferable sequence, The Fountainhead (1943) first and then Atlas Shrugged (1957). I started with Atlas Shrugged, which renders The Fountainhead rather unclimactic. Religion never came up, so only today did I learn that Nolan was also a Unitarian Universalist.
The growth of the Tea Party, the Nolan chart, and the comments in the video above all point to the need for more illuminating angles and perspectives regarding our political discourse. His frustration with the Libertarian Party sounds eerily familiar with what Tea has expressed about the GOP. Without question David Nolan was a truly free thinker committed to what he considered best for humanity and not focused on what was best for himself and his friends at the expense of others. He will be missed.