posted on Dec, 31 2005 @ 09:02 PM
In many respects things have gone from bad to worse since like 98/99. To be honest, it has made me suspect that there could be something powerful
about the collective expectations of mankind. Everyone who is easily rattled began to worry in '98/'99. There was something about that inverted 666
in the date, and the coming of a new millenium. Everytime we start focusing on something, it seems to happen. Look at the hurricane season after "Day
After Tomorrow" was produced.
I don't know if it's being caused or only percieved, and I don't know what the mechanics of it are. I do however believe that we will at least
percieve 2006 as a very bad year.
The storm season may very well begin very early in 2006, but won't necessarily go late this time. Historical patterns make that a reasonable
possibility- but it will be viewed as something sinister and new. Some may even posit (though not very believably) that the Hurricane Season never
really ended between 2005 and 2006.
Democrats will win a commanding victory in the congressional elections in November. Even an impeachment is unlikely, but will be very much talked
about and may be attempted.
By the end of 2006, we'll know almost exactly when the troops are coming home from Iraq. Militarily, the winter of 2006-2007 is going to feel kind of
like 1968, but it won't take 4-5 years to get out from that point. I'm not expecting a tet-like event, but it's not outside the realm of
possibility that Iran will try to orchestrate one. Bush may try to pull an October surpise similar to Johnson's cease-fire by unexpectedly announcing
a large force reduction. This would be ill-advised for the Republicans though- it would be an admission of fault in their previous stances.
There is a possibility of trouble with Iran in the Spring. If the bluster is correct, Spring is definately the time for a war in the Middle East. The
result could be an oil crisis if that happens.
Even if it doesn't happen, gas will spike again, as it has virtually every year in recent memory. It will go up over $3 dollars in California and the
other high-price markets, then settle back down. I think they're starting to realize that people cut back on their driving whenever it gets close to
3 bucks- but they still think they can acclimate us to it if they bump it up, then cut it half way back down again.
I don't expect a terrorist event on the order of 9/11 and I can tell you why. Al Qaida expected a lot more than they got out of 9/11. They
overestimated the importance of the WTC to our financial infrastructure. At this point they've got several years worth of very detailed planning to
do. Even with nukes, they won't be getting the yield they want or probably the airburst either, so they'll need to place them very well. For this
reason, I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if they didn't wait a decade or more to really hit us hard again. For now they'll settle for trying
to chase the Europeans away from us with smaller attacks so that we can't maintain a presence in the middle east.
The flavor of the year in terms of disasters may shift away from Hurricanes despite oddities in that arena because it's getting old. Earthquakes are
unlikely replacements because they aren't regular enough and don't last very long in the news. If we have a bad tornado season, that will be the
story, really it's more likely that we'll see some rough business in the pacific, and a preoccupation will arise with the unlikely possibility that
the Western US or Mexico may actually start seeing tropical storms (A hurricane actually did hit off the coast of San Diego once, long long ago). If
there were to be a strong El Nino coupled with unseasonably warm weather in late 2006, especially after an early start to the Hurricane season, a bad
rainy season in the fall/winter could fuel speculation of the phenomenon I mentioned above. All in all, it's pretty unlikely though.
The Vagabond will earn the second 4.0 of his academic life, and probably won't threaten to kick the snot out of any professors this time, because he
really felt bad about that incident after the fact last time.