Instead, individualists recognize that government is sometimes necessary to enable peaceful coexistence. They would agree that to the extent that we have to have government, democratic action is generally the least objectionable way to channel its coercions. Even so, there is no less exercise of selfishness via democracy than via any other mechanism for translating individual preferences into collective decisions. We all still bring our personal values to the voting booth, even to the extent that our values might include everyone going to church on Sunday (were that permitted to be put up to a vote), or that some people deserved to be enslaved for half the year (were that still permitted to be put up to a vote), or that certain people deserve to have half of their earnings taken from them (which may be put up for a vote).
So, maybe you believe that if we don’t use government coercion to make everyone help the poor, the poor won’t get enough. But here you are really saying two things. First, you are saying that you know how much the poor should get better than the average person, presumably because you care more about them than they do, which, if true, would be rather presumptuous and arrogant. (If it’s not true, then on what basis would you say that the average person would not give “enough?”) The other thing you are saying is that if we are all forced to help the poor, that the poor will then be fine. The evidence on that is far from conclusive, especially in areas with diverse ethnicities and cultures. And it’s not apt to compare Nordic countries to America. You should compare Nordic countries to Minnesota, which has about as many ethnic Nordics and non-Nordic minorities as the typical Nordic countries, but very different approaches to social welfare, and see what you get. Go ahead; check it out on all measures of wealth and health.