Did you ever notice, as Andy Rooney might say, how at the beginning of the year the pundits feel compelled to offer predictions for the coming year?
And did you ever notice they never seem to come back the following year to find out how far off the mark they were?
Well, none of that here. No, sir. As 2008 gets started, here are some sure-fire predictions that, thanks to the miracle of archiving, you can check on a year from now to find out just how prescient I am.
So, staring into my crystal ball (OK, it's actually a cold cup of coffee), here are some foolproof predictions for 2008:
- Ron Paul will not win the Republican presidential primary. If he then runs as an independent or third-party candidate, he still will not win the election.
Now, before his rabid supporters start popping their forehead veins, keep in mind that I'm not expressing agreement or disagreement with this outcome. I'm just pointing out that is what is going to happen, just as dispassionately and accurately as if I said it would be dark outside at midnight.
- Cynthia McKinney, running as the Green Party candidate, will not win the presidential election.
That assessment also is dispassionate and accurate, except in this case I also prefer that outcome. The one good thing about McKinney is that she makes Ron Paul supporters look moderate.
- After lots of bluster and flirtation with "dark horse" and third-party candidates, voters nationally will choose between two major-party candidates who are firmly entrenched in the establishment. Both alternatives will stink, but we'll hold our noses and vote for one of them anyway.
So, after all this, who will win the nominations, and who will then go on to become president? Beats the heck out of me.
In fact, part of the problem is that they're spending so much time beating the heck out of each other. If they spent half as much time telling us what they'd like to accomplish as they do lobbing mud at their opponents, some of these candidates in both major parties might actually be appealing.
OK, not really. But at least maybe we wouldn't be so sick of all of them by the time it's actually our turn to vote.
That time, by the way, is in about five weeks. By then, the results of earlier primaries will have caused several of the candidates to drop out. I'm predicting that many Columbia County voters casting early ballots will actually vote for a candidate who, by the time Georgia's Feb. 5 primary rolls around, will no longer be in the race.
But not all is politics, you say; surely there are some other fool-proof predictions for this new leap year!
Of course. Here we are:
- Before the year is over, we will mourn the death of someone who is moderately important and/or famous.
- A local, regional or national sports figure or team will celebrate an important victory.
- A local, regional or national sports figure or team will suffer a humiliating loss. (To be more specific, it's the Atlanta Falcons. I know you're shocked.)
- It will get hot this summer, and someone will blame "global warming."
- We will have a late frost this spring, and someone will cite it as proof that "global warming" is as fake as Al Gore.
- Someone who should know better will do something really stupid, and we will hear about it endlessly on the news.
There. Foolproof predictions. And I further foresee that a year from now we will have forgotten all about them - except for one guy who will call to tell me he hasn't forgotten, that he's still angry, and that even though I was right I'm still an idiot.
And I'll say, "Mr. Paul, don't you have anything better to do?"
(Barry L. Paschal is publisher of The Columbia County News-Times. E-mail comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.)
The Columbia County News-Times ©2013. All Rights Reserved.