We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Government was originally how the powerful kept the meek under their thumbs -- a modicum of protection for a lot of support from the "protected".
For a brief period as history goes, government was how we banded together for mutual safety and to develop mutual resources, at least in America. The 19th C was a glorious era in many ways: expansion of transportation, economic vitality (with ugly interruptions, yes), expanding personal liberty. It continued until ---
Well, hard to say. Theodore Roosevelt is on Rushmore and is often spoken of fondly here, but I have developed doubts. He tended toward a class-envy populism even though he was of the class that was envied. Woodrow Wilson certainly wanted to make the government more things to more people, if not all things to all people.
Surely FDR was the epitome of early 20thC progressives. And surely we're still paying the price for his policies.
The trend toward government-as-provider rather than government-as-mutual-agency has accelerated in the late 20th C and now into the 21st C. I sure don't know how to stop it.
I had a military career but I didn't think of it as "living at everyone else's expense". I don't see my pension that way now, although it makes up about 35% of the value of my household income. I worked hard during my service career and I've worked (mostly) hard every since.