Thomas Paine, or "that dirty little atheist" to Theodore Roosevelt, was the man most responsible for the common folk of the United States deciding to fight for their independence. He wrote the smash hit, Common Sense, and gave all the money to the Continental Army.
After freeing the American colonies, he turned his pen against religious authority in The Age of Reason and in defense of liberty in The Rights of Man (which inspired Mary Wollstonecraft to pen The Rights of Woman.) He was also one of the first vocal abolitionists.
While some of his quotes make him beloved by libertarians, he also wrote of the need for all people to be given a small sum by the government, and then to be provided for in their old age (though without elaborating how the money would be raised).
 Famous quotes
"Government, even in its best state, is but a necessary evil; in its worst state, an intolerable one."
"[C]reate a national fund, out of which there shall be paid to every person, when arrived at the age of twenty-one years, the sum of fifteen pounds sterling, as a compensation in part, for the loss of his or her natural inheritance, by the introduction of the system of landed property. And also, the sum of ten pounds per annum, during life, to every person now living, of the age of fifty years, and to all others as they shall arrive at that age."
"Without the pen of the author of Common Sense, the sword of Washington would have been raised in vain." - John Adams