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My Predictions for 2009 January 2, 2009

Posted by neoavatara in Economy, Entertainment, Politics, Random, World Politics.
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Now that the new year has arrived, I think it is time to see where we are going as a people, a nation, and as a planet.  Others have made their predictions, here are mine, that you can ridicule a year from now.

1. Barack Obama will have the longest honeymoon of any U.S. President in recent history.

No president has come into office during my lifetime with more problems than Mr. Obama.  Additionally, I can’t remember ever having more general good feeling to the new President than now.  First, being the first African-American President is a moment of greatness for the nation.  I think all will be awe struck on January 20th, when he takes the oath of office.  Additionally, the Republicans are in disarray, and it will take some time for them to mount a serious opposition.

2.  Congress and Obama will fight early.

This is bound to happen.  There will be a power struggle, largely between Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosic and Mr. Obama.  Obama is sure to win.  But these fights are all too common; look to Bill Clinton’s first years in office.

3.  Obama will be tested with a crisis in his first year.

Most Presidents are.  Some more so than others; George W. Bush,who planned on focusing on domestic affairs, was defined by the events of September 11, 2001, just 8 months after taking office.  I hope it isn’t anything so catastrophic.  But it is highly likely that a foreign policy disaster will land on the new President’s plate sometime during the year.

4. The Democrats will push too far.

Again, this is guaranteed.  Whenever you have such large political majorities, you can’t help but think that you are stronger than you are.  Politicians never learn their lesson.  Ultimately, the Democrats will take one step farther than they should, despite Mr. Obama’s claims.  And the public will, atleast temporarily, turn against them.

5.  Republicans will find a new mantra…and maybe a new leader.

Nature abhors a vacuum…and that is what exists in the leadership of the Republican party.  Quick, name the four top leaders in the Republican party now.  Yeah, good luck with that.  Someone will rise to the occasion.  Who claims the throne may give insight to where the party is going in the future.  2010 elections is now 21 months away, so time to get moving.  Additionally, the Republicans will find some solid footing to start opposing the Democrats.  This will largely come from the Democrats own actions.  Eventually, the Democrats will screw up…and the Republicans will be waiting, and biding their time.

6. Iraq and Afghanistan will make huge leaps of progress.

Iraq, for all practical purposes, is over.  The war is won, for what it is worth.  Liberals hate  admitting that, but it is in fact true.  Right now, all parties expect U.S. troops to be out by 2011…and that is without Mr. Obama doing anything.  Afghanistan is a more complicated problem.  A troop surge of 20,000 is to start this month.  But Afghanistan is controllable.  Yes, terrorists will be there for a long time.  But slowly building the Afghan government and army will sustain them in the long run.

7. Pakistan will be the center of the world.

Whether it is Afghanistan, Al Qaeda, India…Pakistan will be the heart of it all.  India and Pakistan are unlikely to fight in any real terms.  But there will be a war going on nonetheless.  Unless Pakistan is willing to take steps against extremists that it has so far refused, its existence is in doubt.  No, not from an external power like the U.S. or India, but from self destructing.

8.  Russia will continue to become more belligerent.

What else do they have other than rhetoric?  Gas prices are crumbling, their social infrastructure is dissolving, and they are turning into dictatorship.  Only thing that can keep that going is more bellicose national pride.

9. The economy will recover sooner than people think.

Right now, economists are ready to jump off a cliff, proclaiming that the end is no where is sight.  That is why you should believe that the end IS in sight.  Economists are so consistently wrong, it is funny.  I think unemployment will continue to rise through the year, but we will see slow growth by the second quarter.  And solid growth by 2010.  The stock market will also pick up by mid year, ready for a relatively good year in 2010.

10.  Random Thoughts:

  • Conservative talking heads, led by Rush Limbaugh, will have a field day this year, to the lament of liberals.
  • Liberal newspaper giants like the New York Times will ask the government for a bailout.
  • Online, addicted to facebook, realclearpolitics, RedState, Townhall, CNET, ESPN, AuntMinnie, Aintitcoolnews.
  • Movies I am looking forward to this year:  Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, Terminator Salvation, Avatar, Monsters vs. Aliens, Public Enemies, Star Trek, and the Watchmen (well, if they ever get out of their legal fight…).  But will any top my beloved The Dark Knight or Wall-E?  One can hope…
  • TV Shows I am looking forward to:  Lost (god, I am addicted to this show…), Battlestar Galactica, Scrubs, House, Burn Notice, Dexter, Entourage, Chuck, 30 Rock, South Park.  Sadly saying goodbye to Pushing Daisies, and happily saying goodbye to ER.
  • Technologically, this is the year Blu-Ray Explodes.  Flat screen TVs are plummeting in price.  Internet speeds will increase, and we will begin to see pricing wars for Cable TV.
  • I hope my beloved Michigan Wolverines recover from a disastrous 2008 football season.
  • The Red Wings will repeat as Stanley Cup Champions.  The Tigers will play well, but still miss the playoffs.  The Pistons will lose in the Eastern conference finals.  And the Lions will exceed expectations, and win 2 games next year.
  • Oklahoma will beat Florida for the BCS championship.  Pittsburgh Steelers will win the Super Bowl.  North Carolina will win the NCAA basketball championship.  Michigan will with the NCAA hockey championship  The Boston Celtics will repeat as NBA champions.  The Chicago Cubs will win the World Series (o.k., you gotta throw one  hail mary in there, don’t you?).

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On a personal note, I am ready for the best year ever.  My job and family are great.  My best friend gets married this year.  My charity is going strong (donate now!!!).   Life is good.

Wishing you and yours the happiest of years.

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