Based on review by a Blue Ribbon panel (my relatives) last year’s predictions were rated 80% correct or predicatively ‘close enough’. Last year’s predictions are copied at the end of this missive. Thanks to Margi Florini, Joe Randazzo and Joann Landry who served as the sounding board for what follows. predictions.
Generally, Americans will begin/continue to awaken to the totalitarian impulses of the Obama administration and Progressive thinking; IRS, NSA, Fast and Furious, regulation, crony capitalism (Corporatism) and the wholesale absence of direct accountability.
GDP will improve slightly, 2.5% annually, but will remain insufficient to generate a significant impact on joblessness. Real unemployment will remain around 15%. The recent Federal Reserve ‘tapering’ will not continue based upon stagnant job creation. Underlying dynamics will support higher inflation. The Fed will do everything in their power to hold the line, and they will eventually fail. The underground economy will continue to grow.
ObamaCare will continue to collapse of its own weight, as predicted last year. The President to avoid admission of failure will have no choice but to continue to apply un-Constitutional delays and alterations to the law for purely political reasons with an eye to the 2014 mid terms. These tactics will become ever more obvious in intent with disapproval for ObamaCare hovering around 65% and remaining there. Calls for Republicans to, in essence, propose ‘fixes and alternatives’ will escalate. The odds that Republicans will, as is their pattern, foolishly take the bait are north of 50%. Any Republican proposal will simply provide a platform for Democratic criticism regardless of the nature of the proposals. The President, on the other hand, will use the debt ceiling debate to deflect attention away from ObamaCare. The rhetoric will be repetitive and will sound ever more hollow to the public in general.
The Keystone Pipeline will not be approved by the administration.
Democrats in the Senate will begin to push back against Leader Harry Reid sensing personal opportunity in that opposition. They will make the calculation that Leader Reid has become a liability, especially in the context of the 2014 mid-term elections. Republicans will gain seats but not achieve a majority in the Senate. In the House Republicans will lose seats but maintain the majority. In the context of the 2016 elections a Democrat Senate may, in fact, end up being a positive for Republicans. So long as Republicans disagree on unifying principals within the party they will not be able to present themselves to the public in a cohesive fashion. The actual model that will limit Republican gains will be the Virginia model; phantom Democratic money funding ‘stealth’ Libertarian candidates intended to split the Conservative/Republican vote.
Based on the Year End Presidential press conference we might be lead to believe that the MSM will actually begin to do their job. Don’t believe it, they are reacting to short term impulses and will return to a posture that either justifies Presidential behavior or fails to report and objectively analyze critical issues until and unless a continued slide in Presidential approval ratings demands it. Were we to chart Presidential approval and MSM ‘energy’ the charts will look reciprocal.
The effort by the administration to transition the American Military from a collection of warriors to a collection of politically correct drones will accelerate. A key Military leader will resign in protest, expose the effort and create a domestic crisis for the administration. I could be dreaming, but I sense increasing pent up frustration with the administration within the military.
Conservatives will take a cue from Rand Paul and realize that they have to go to and engage the opposition (minorities, university liberals and left leaning independents) with the logic of Conservative thinking. Conservatives must engage beyond the warm embrace of Conservative orthodoxy if they want to win. Residence in the echo chamber will not work and the context of unique opportunity presents itself.
Hillary will wait on the trends for the 2014 mid-terms before officially ‘jumping in’. She will continue to raise money and establish her network. She realizes that, as a candidate, there is little difference between her and an increasingly rejected President Obama. That theme will form the center point of a Republican campaign against her. There is significant history and evidence that Hillary will represent “more of the same” and Republicans will aggressively point it out. She, on the other hand, will likely rely on the competence argument; the timing of that argument will depend on where Obama’s approvals stand. Bill will encourage her to ‘step out’ sooner as opposed to later.
Obama approval will remain in the neighborhood of 40% for the first third of the year, it will decline to an average of 37% from there on as ObamaCare continues to collapse and millions more policies are cancelled.
The law suits pending regarding the un-Constitutional application of Presidential powers will fail legally but gain traction with the public in general, elevating the issue and creating pressure on both the political and judicial infrastructure.
The Tea Party will come to realize that the initial energy of their movement has been somewhat mitigated politically. They will realize that some level of incremental gains will be required to set the stage for dramatic movement toward Conservative goals.
The Iranian nuclear Red Line will be crossed and Israel will move against the regime, they will do so in concert with Saudi Arabia and, possibly, the Gulf States; the enemy of my enemy! In advance of an actual strike there will be a series of ‘accidents’ within the Iranian nuclear infrastructure; accelerating ‘accidents’ will be the clue that a serious strike is in the offing.
Saudi Arabia will look for a new network of alliances based on their rejection of American leadership and policy. American influence in the region will continue to decline. There will be no Kerry peace deal with the Palestinians.
Jihadists will, on an ongoing basis, control ever more territory in Syria and the civil war will continue with Jihadists taking the upper hand. Assad will be gone by the end of the year short of direct Russian military involvement. The Russians will position themselves with the Jihadists in advance of Assad moving on should they decide not to directly intervene; they will do whatever is necessary to maintain their warm water port in Syria.
The Pogrom against Christians in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia will continue as the ‘International Community’ has no interest in condemning it, let alone attempting to stop it. The absence of American leadership will result in thousands of unnecessary deaths as the borders of Islamic control expand by way of the murder of innocents.
China will continue to create conflict most especially in the South China Sea. Based on the past four years counties in the region will see the West in general and America specifically as feckless and untrustworthy. China will also be very active related to energy contracts and investments in the 3rd world.
Vlad Putin will accelerate his efforts to reconstruct the Soviet Union. Dominos will fall one by one based on Russia’s control of energy supplies, military expansion and the failure of the West to stand up to Putin’s transparent intentions. A reprise of the Cold War could result.
END 2014 PREDICTIONS.
Predictions from January of 2013; judge for yourself
The economy will not top 2% in quarterly GDP growth; we will begin to see the inevitable result of Federal Reserve policy take hold in the form of inflation beyond the inflation we’ve already seen in food and fuel. Real GDP, adjusted, will fall far short of what the economy needs to provide the growth necessary to create jobs in the private sector. Our answer will be to continue to extend unemployment benefits, pro growth policies will be absent from this administration.
There will be no serious agreements on debt and deficit reduction. Private capital and lending will remain in stasis. Democrats will not participate in entitlement reform and Republicans, who cannot seem to find their own ass with two hands and a flash light, will cave in over and over again. The Republicans will continue to be outflanked by the ongoing campaign of the President.
2013 sees the first serious impact of ObamaCare. By year’s end polling in opposition to ObamaCare will reach 60%. It won’t matter.
A significant number of people in the top tax bracket, targeted by the President will, literally, manage their income levels to stay out of that bracket. This dynamic will result in tax receipts from that segment of the population declining not increasing. Would you rather pay 33% on $250,000 in income or 39% on $250,010? That $10.00 in income will cost you $15,000 in taxes. Economic history shows that this is always how it goes, examples of this dynamic are everywhere, such as the current example in France; it doesn’t matter; facts don’t matter. Canada looks like a much better place to invest your money, be employed or seek economic opportunity as compared to where we’re heading.
It would be nice to predict that in 2014 the mid-term election will result in a severe reduction in Democratic control. That however, may be a bridge too far. The President has had significant success in distracting us away from large issues by focusing on the small issues and populist themes. He will continue to do so and put Republicans into some combination of reacting or being forced into non material ‘busy work’. The President’s legislative proposals and positions will move ever farther leftward and the same basic formula of “why would you oppose tax reductions for 98% of the people?” will be a consistent approach. We’ll see it in the immigration debate; “why would you oppose legalization for 3% of the people?”
If ‘moderates’ and ‘independents’ were paying attention they are now aware that their much ballyhooed impact on elections took a back seat to the Democrat’s impressive effort to ‘find’ heretofore unidentified, inactive and fundamentally knowledge deprived voters. While this effort was targeted at battleground states, the formula is clear and it is unlikely the DNC will abandon the strategy anytime soon. 2014 elections will result in either status quo or a voter rebellion in favor of Conservatives. Too soon to tell but I don’t see much in the middle of those two options.
Scandals within the administration will continue to present themselves. People who pay attention will be appalled, the Media will continue to sing President Obama’s tune. A backlash against the media will not happen.
John Kerry will be confirmed. The State Department under Mr. Kerry will go down in history as one of the most significant appeasers in history. Islamic violence will not be confronted; neither will be Russia or China. The UN will become, under Mr. Kerry, our go to organization for the determination of foreign policy. Mr. Kerry will continually look to the UN for approval of US foreign policy.
Newt Gingrich will re-emerge as a major player in the arena of Conservative ideas and Republican strategic thinking. Look for Newt in the second half of the year.
Executive Orders will continue to be applied by the President regardless of Constitutionality. It is the basis upon which the President’s ‘fundamental transformation’ will reside. Regulation will follow right behind; there will be an unremitting deluge of regulation constantly ‘nudging’ us towards the President’s Democratic Socialist vision for the country. We will be constantly reminded that he ‘won’.
Class warfare on the heels of the election will not mitigate, it will be a consistent theme of the administration going forward. The ‘success minority’ will be under constant attack.
This Year’s Predictions, Foreign:
The absence of any true central authority in Islam means that nearly any Imam can declare Jihad against non Muslims. That is exactly what is happening and will continue to happen. No one will do anything about it. As Muslims run out of Christians and Jews they will turn upon themselves based on the competing sects within Islam. Let’s hope they do a good job of it.
Egypt will devolve into dictatorship, and the Middle East’s most significant nation will follow the path of Iran.
Al Qaeda affiliates will move out of Eastern Libya and eventually overrun the remaining portions of the country. They will then, successfully, set their sights on Tunisia.
Syria will use chemical weapons on the rebels. Russia will scream and then do nothing as a key Russian Naval Base exists in Syria. Russia will, however, attempt to buy off the Jihadist influences in Syria once Assad’s fate is sealed. They are likely doing so now.
Saudi Arabia will continue to buy time. The arming of Syrian rebels is just one of many pay offs the Saudi’s have and will continue to make. Saudi’s are attempting to hold back the rising tide of opposition to the Royal Family by funding Jihadists, so long as they are not within the Saudi borders. They bought off the Saudi version of the Arab Spring; it’s what they know how to do.
Israel will continue to receive messages from the US that they are, at least politically, on their own. Chuck Hagel as a potential Secretary of Defense is the best demonstration of the fundamental anti Israeli attitude within the administration. Mr. Kerry is also no fan of Israel despite public statements to the contrary.
Benghazi will not be the last US diplomatic outpost targeted by Islamists. Already in Yemen a $160,000 bounty has been offered for the death of the US Ambassador by al Qaeda.
Hamas will attempt to take control of the West Bank eliminating the power of the current Palestinian Authority and fully radicalizing the entire Palestinian political structure. Should Hamas see success in this effort there will be a military confrontation over the West Bank. The confrontation with Hamas in Gaza will also heat up again in the second half of the year.
Israel will face the Iranian red line this year. They will do so alone. Should clandestine efforts prove insufficient to hamstring the Iranian nuclear program Israel will be prepared to go it alone. Quiet support from Saudi Arabia will also be present.