He came back from the Korean War and went to college on the GI Bill; bought his house with an FHA loan; saw his kids born in a VA hospital; started a hardware business with SBA loans and advice; got his electricity from TVA and, later, his water from an EPA project. His parents retired to a farm on Social Security, a farm on which they got their electricity from REA and their soil testing through USDA. When his father became very ill, the family was saved from financial disaster by Medicare and a life was saved with a drug developed through NIH research.
His kids participated in the school lunch program, learned physics and math in high school from teachers retrained in an NSF program, and were able to go college through the guaranteed student loans. He drove his car to work every day on the Interstate and moored his boat in a channel dredged by the Army corps of engineers. When floods hit his town, a couple of years back, he took Amtrak up to Washington to apply for disaster relief.
And then--after all that was said and done--he sat down one day and wrote his Congressman an angry letter asking the federal government to get off his back, and he complained about paying taxes for all those programs created for grateful people who were getting a free ride.
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