To me that word tends to conjure up a bunch of hairy guys in flannel plaid shits with hunting rifles...
The more intellectual class of mountain men.
Here it generally refers to somewhat conservative folks who believe people ought to be self-supporting rather than cared for whenever possible. They often get lumped in with republicans as a lot of them will try and claim to be libertarian, but they are a rather different group altogether. Not too far off your perception I guess, but without the hairy mountain man/redneck part.
I personally might qualify as libertarian, except that my views are somewhat more liberal than theirs and I have no wish to be associated with the only person I know on DD who I can recall having called himself that as he's firmly convinced that the US government is run by iguanas.
On the strength issue, I do agree that it's a matter of how specific you're talking. In general, men tend to seem to be built to absorb physical abuse more just from a past-jobs standpoint, but women are fully capable of taking the same damage. I think it's more a case of relative perception really. Men usually do work and play in ways that are more likely to get them injured ( say what you want about women moving into men's jobs, but I haven't heard of too many women out there logging yet. It's still a male profession. ), and when one group appears to get injured more often and be able to shrug it off regularly, that does make them appear to be the stronger group. Beyond that thought, I don't have much to add about it since it's been pretty well covered.
I will say that I always find the line that women have a higher pain tolerance to be BS for precisely the reason Product named. There's not a single person around with a higher pain tolerance than a woman giving birth, but how many women do you see fast roping out of a Blackhawk while going through labor? Once again, it depends on the situation. Hospital birthing room? Definite "Her". Battlefield with a bullet through the leg? Probably a "Him".