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Obama’s Other False Claim—Economic Betterment

Dec. 18, 2016 (EIRNS)—Besides claiming that U.S. intelligence agencies have indisputable evidence of Russian tampering with the U.S. election—evidence which "you are not going to see"— Barack Obama also claimed, in his Dec. 16 press conference, progress and economic betterment for the American people during his terms in office. "What I can say with confidence is that what we’ve done, works. That I can prove," Obama said. "I can show you where we were in 2008 and I can show you where we are now. And you can’t argue that we are not better off; we are."

But the real, physical-economic and social evidence is quite otherwise.

The number of Americans eligible to participate in the nation’s workforce has grown by about 15 million during Obama’s presidency, but the number not participating has grown by an astonishing 13 million. This makes a mockery of claims of "full employment" in 2016; at least 8-9 million more than normal in other decades, have dropped out of the labor force.

The annual rate of growth of the employed workforce, which was between 2% and 2.8% from 1975-2000, has never been higher, and frequently lower than 1.5% during Obama’s presidency.

Manufacturing, mining, and construction employment has declined by 1,000,000, or about 5%, during Obama’s presidency.

Labor productivity growth has disappeared during the Obama presidency, averaging just 0.4% annually from 2010-2015. The only other time since WWII that his happened, was much more briefly in 1979-81, during a deep, so-called "double-dip recession."

Electricity production per capita in the United States, a key measure of standard of living, has dropped during Obama’s presidency from 14 Megawatt-hours/year, to 12 MwH/year.

The median real (inflation-adjusted) income of American households is $3,000, or 5.5% lower than when Obama took office. It has declined in 2/3 of all U.S. counties, including the entire Eastern half of the country and most of the Western quarter of it.

Federal spending on "investment" (particularly infrastructure and public construction) has dropped from 15% to 7% of expenditures during Obama’s presidency, although Federal spending on transfer payments have risen from 40% to over 50%.

Annual deaths from opioid painkiller overdoses have risen from 14,000 to 22,000/year; and deaths from heroin overdoses from 2,500 to 12,000/year during Obama’s presidency; total deaths from opiate overdoses, therefore, have doubled from 16,500 to 34,000/year. The United States now has 21 million opiate addicts according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Finally, death rates for first the prime-age white population, and then from 2015 for the entire population, have risen under both G.W. Bush’s and Obama’s presidency, an unprecedented trend for an industrialized country; life expectancy was falling for the entire American population as of 2015.

Not just betterment, but very survival has been put at risk for the American people by Obama. For the President to have bragged of such a record when leaving office is shameful.

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