When most people use the word “government” they are talking about the collective more accurately called “the state.” Not in the sense of the 50 familiar shapes making up maps of the United States of America, of which New Mexico is one, but in the sense of out-of-control institutional authoritarianism; statism.
I, too, use the word “government” in this way when speaking to people about the pitfalls of the state. It’s not quite accurate, but most people understand.
However, there is a difference.
Government can be good, bad, or neutral.
Government is simply people coming together, under unanimously consensual rules, to get things done. It is never mandatory. Government, if done right, might even help protect the life, liberty, and property of the individuals who voluntarily join together.
The state, on the other hand, is always anti-social; the more powerful it becomes, the weaker society gets. A state does not operate by unanimous consent, but is imposed against the wishes of at least a large minority of its victims. The state is established to steal, to control every human action with laws, and to give favors to the politically connected. States are designed to rule and enslave.
Once a state takes hold, and the people identify with it, the destruction of the society is under way.
I can almost understand why someone would accept a government as a helper; to assist with the things the person can’t (or believes they can’t) do on their own. Possibly to complete big projects like bridges and space programs. Perhaps to coordinate training for defense against the weapons of an enemy state. Maybe to provide a “safety net.”
I think they are wrong, but I can understand their thinking.
What I can’t even begin to understand is how anyone could allow a government to mutate into a state and become their master; to control them, tell them what they are allowed or forbidden to do, and to threaten them with punishment if they don’t comply. This is a perversion of government. Government is to be the obedient servant and never the overbearing master; to never become a state.
America has cancer. America is burdened with a state where armed state employees give orders to the people who are their moral, ethical, and political superiors. This is backward. Government, as outlined in the Declaration of Independence, was replaced by a state established and empowered by the coup that resulted in the U.S. Constitution. This path doesn’t end well.