How is society more important than individual

Most of the arguments between liberals and conservatives stem from the argument between individualism and society.

Conservatives appear to think that individual rights are more important than the needs of society, which are manifest in their opposition to health care reform and other programs designed to help society. They even go on to imply that society is a burden on individuals, citing things like taxation, food stamps, and social security as hindrances on their personal wealth.

However, conservatives, like the rest of us, are dependent on a healthy society to function. Whether they like it or not, they live in a society. If large parts of our society are unhealthy, poor, or destitute, then we all suffer as a whole, as is evident during this recession/depression.

Make no mistake, we all depend on society. Someone else makes our clothes, spins our fabric, makes the thread, forges the steel, makes the needles to stitch the clothes, cuts the steel into a blade, makes the lumber, refines the oil, grows the food, makes the weapons.

We all live in a society where we all depend on the fact that each one of us only does a specific thing. We all are inter dependent on each other.

Question is:

Why do Republicans/Conservatives value individualism more than society, when they are entirely dependent on society to live?

Why do conservatives think that the very society that sustains them, that allows them to prosper, is a burden on them?

Update:

Jeremy, well said.