Thursday, December 26, 2019

Off The Mark

Every December I make predictions for the coming year. But unlike most people who make predictions, I actually go back and review the predictions I made the prior December. Usually I do ok. A few of the predictions are spot-on and some are close. Two or three are total misses. 2019 was mostly all misses. I mean I was way off the mark on most everything. But like a gambler who doubles down to catch up, I will make my predictions for 2020 and hope for the best.

But first, how far off the mark were my 2019 predictions? Judge for yourself.

_1. Alabama wins another National Title.
Grade C: They made it to the championship, but Clemson kicked their ass.

_2. The economy continues to slowdown, but we don’t go into a recession until 2020. The tariff wars cool off which helps stabilize the economy for now.
Grade B: I was right about the slowdown, but I don’t see a recession in 2020. The tariff wars have finally cooled off, but too late to avoid a significant negative impact on 2019.

_3. Oil prices remain relatively low.
Grade A: I think this one was fairly accurate

_4. The Democrats will spend most of their time investigating Trump and Trump’s associates, but they won’t pursue impeachment. They will talk about it a lot, but it’s not a battle they can win. (Unless of course Trump does something really crazy…which is always a possibility.)
Grade: F: While I was right about the Democrats investigating Trump, I was wrong in predicting they would not pursue impeachment. I guess you really can’t fix stupidity.

_5. Trump gets to fill another Supreme Court seat. Get your popcorn ready.
Grade F: Maybe this was more of a wish than a solid prediction.

_6. LA Rams beat the LA Chargers in the Super Bowl. Super Bowl television ratings are in the toilet.
Grade C: Well the Rams got there, but what was I thinking picking the Chargers to make it?

_7. Red Sox and Dodgers meet again in the World Series. This time the Dodgers win.
Grade F: Total miss

_8. I think we will get an infrastructure bill and immigration reform passed this year. Both parties realize that they have to get something done with the 2020 election coming up. I know it’s hard to imagine anything getting done in Washington, but it might just happen this year. Whatever gets passed it won’t be great, but maybe a step or two in the right direction.
Grade D: Of course I should have known Congress would accomplish nothing. They did pass a last minute highway bill which is better than nothing I suppose.

_9. Russia will continue to push the boundaries in the effort to expand its influence in the Middle East. They will take advantage of the lack of leadership in the West.
Grade B: I think this is sort of correct. I thought it would be more eventful, but Russia is taking every opportunity to play a larger role in that part of the world.

_10. The Best Movie award will go to another movie I have not watched, nor will I ever. (Unless it goes to Crazy Rich Asians…really good movie, two thumbs up)
Grade F: Green Book won and it is a great movie…which I did watch.

So now for those 2020 predictions…and you can take these to the bank.

_1. LSU wins the National Championship. Head Coach Ed Orgeron becomes spokesperson for the National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association.

_2. Oil prices will remain stable. If there is any significant movement I think it will be downward.

_3. Climate Change Hysteria will increase. In this election year, it’s a popular drum to beat. Greta Thunberg wins a Nobel Prize.

_4. The Irishman wins the Academy Award for Best Movie. Robert De Niro's acceptance speech turns into a rant about Trump.

_5. I am picking the Houston Astros and Los Angeles Dodgers for the World Series match up. Astros win in six games. This is a lock. Bet the farm. Now.

_6. 49ers face the Ravens in the Super Bowl. Ravens win. No one cares.

_7. I am going to lose weight, again. 10 lbs minimum.

_8. Truck capacity tightens considerably. While freight volumes are likely to increase slightly, the major factor will be the exodus of smaller fleets from the industry. Insurance costs will be the final nail in the coffin for a lot of carriers. Expect rates to go up 5-7%.

_9. In the wake of Brexit, the U.S. and the U.K. reach an historic and HUGE trade agreement. Scotland decides to stay with the U.K. so they can sell more whiskey to Americans.

_10. And the Big One: The Democrats impeachment efforts will fail and then Trump will announce that he is NOT going to run for re-election. He won’t resign, he will just say he’s decided not to run. Mike Pence will be the Republican candidate with Nikki Haley as his running mate. It will be a close race. Once again, the Democrats win the popular vote, but lose on the electoral votes. I have no clue who will be on the Democratic ticket. It won’t matter. Trump will ride off into the sunset saying that he was responsible for the win and if he had run, it would have been a landslide…. and that he really was the greatest President ever. The Democrats will spend the next two years unsuccessfully trying to convict him of something….anything...there must be something…everyone knows it…right?

Look back over the past, with its changing empires that rose and fell, and you can foresee the future, too.- Marcus Aurelius, Emperor of the Roman Empire 160-181 A.D.

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