West Virginia's unemployment rate went up four-tenths of a point between June and July, according to the most recent state report on the topic. It increased to 7.4 percent, meaning 5,900 fewer jobs were available last month than in June.
That is the equivalent of a small town - more than the population of New Martinsville, in fact - forced into unemployment during just four weeks.
The increase occurred even as President Barack Obama and his supporters were insisting his policies have been good for the U.S. economy. They have not. The national unemployment rate remains stable, at about 8.3 percent. Statistics on key indicators such as manufacturing are not improving, either.
Yet Obama says we are making progress.
His campaign also insists there is no truth to complaints about a war on coal by the president. Why, coal mine employment is up, claim Obama's aides.
That is not true. After more than a decade in which mine employment did go up, it is now trending downward. During the past year in West Virginia alone, mining and logging employment decreased by about 3,000 jobs.
And state officials are calling for government spending cutbacks to cope with higher expenses caused by federal government mandates.
West Virginians can't take much more "progress" of the Obama variety.