• Star of Mitt Romney Attack Ad Didn't Build That

    Unlike the rest of us, job creators never relied on the assistance of society to get ahead in life. Any job creator who doesn't figure out how to operate a textile mill within ten minutes of being pushed through the birth canal is left out in the forest with the wolves, which also happens to solve the problem of day care in their libertopian society.

    No, they build their mills with their bare hands. Then use it to manufacture bootstraps. Then pull themselves up by those bootstraps, until their ascent is impeded by IRS agents and OSHA regulators.

    Such is the story of Jack Gilchrist, the owner of Gilchrist Metal Fabricating in Hudson, New Hampshire and the star of Mitt Romney's "These Hands" ad, which attacks Barack Obama for suggesting that successful business owners may owe society a debt for the schools and roads that made their success possible.

    "Through hard work and a little bit of luck, we built this business. Why are you demonizing us for it," asks Gilchrist of the President, who routinely praises small business owners as the greatest thing this side of a family farmer. Unfortunately for Romney, "a little bit of luck" is job creator-speak for government-backed loans and Navy contracts

    In 1999, Gilchrist Metal received $800,000 in tax-exempt revenue bonds issued by the New Hampshire Business Finance Authority "to set up a second manufacturing plant and purchase equipment to produce high definition television broadcasting equipment," according to a New Hampshire Union Leader report at the time…

    Last year, Gilchrist Metal also received two U.S. Navy sub-contracts totaling about $83,000 and a smaller $5,600 Coast Guard contract in 2008, according to a government web site that tracks spending.

    None of this should distract from the banal point made by Obama that a business which doesn't receive direct subsidies nevertheless benefits from public investment in basic infrastructure, but sitting down with defense contractors beneath a "We did build it!" banner is especially embarrassing. It's the kind of problem that the Obama campaign didn't make for Romney. He built it all by himself.

    Photo by David McNew/Getty Images News/Getty Images

    Tags: Advertising, Mitt Romney, New Hampshire


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