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Sunday, January 02, 2011 ISSUE #636

A look back at New Year’s Predictions  
Jan. 2, 2011

    COLUMBUS: With everybody predicting what 2011 will bring, I decided to go back and see what I wrote here a year ago about 2010. Let’s see how I did...

    "Unemployment is over 10 percent and will drop to 8 or 9 percent by Christmas."  Well, it didn’t, but maybe it will by Christmas ‘11 or ‘12.

    "The stock market is at 10,500, a third below 2007. Even if it don’t go up, you can bet on Wall Streeters collecting million dollar salaries." In 2010 it went up1000, but still needs another 3000 point gain to eliminate the losses. Meanwhile, Wall Street salaries have recovered nicely.

    "The deficit will get worse. But nobody knows how much worse because it depends on how much China will lend us. Half of our states are broke and looking to Washington for help." That one was easy to get right. Speaker Pelosi predicted four years ago the national debt would not increase while she was Speaker, but she let $3 Trillion get added to it. That’s the most expensive mistake ever made on a New Year’s prediction.

    "On global warming... Ever since that conference in Copenhagen, the weather has gotten colder. These global warming proponents got us excited about the prospects of vacationing at home instead of Florida. We should have suspected it was a trick when the President booked his vacation in Hawaii." And again this Christmas, he flew off to Hawaii when he could have taken the train to New York City or Philadelphia and shoveled snow. My prediction is that Earth will continue the way she has for the past million years, sometimes warmer and sometimes colder. And there’s nothing 300,000,000 Americans can do to persuade her one way or the other.
    "On the end of the inheritance tax... You would be surprised at the number of rich old men who have been hanging on for the last month or two (of 2009) just to avoid paying this tax. Since the death tax returns next January at around fifty percent, 2010 is liable to go down in history as a record year for the high number of our wealthy men and women passing on." On that one the Lame Duck Congress gave a reprieve to anyone with less than $5 million. And ones with more will only pay 35 percent. 

    In my predictions a year ago I said nothing about the election. On Nov. 2, the Democrats took, as Obama described it, a shellacking. There was no shellacking even close to it until yesterday’s drubbing suffered by five football schools from the Big Ten. They played like the Little Sisters of the Poor. Even the mighty Badgers from Wisconsin were chased back in their hole by the Christians from Texas.

Historic quotes from Will Rogers:

    "Nothing much in papers today but just what I predicted to you the other day would be on New Year's Day -- optimistic predictions by all prominent men who are doing well."
DT #759, Jan. 1, 1929

    [a year later] "We are obliged to read the usual New Year's prosperity apple-sauce by our same prominent men who are always rich enough to see a great year coming up. And to show you they don't know any more about it than Clara Bow, last year they had their usual hokum predictions, and in October we lost (a huge amount), and yet not a one of these predicted it." DT #1070, Dec 30, 1929

    "There is not a single person that knows any more about what 1933 has in store for us than a billy goat. Ten million people have gone without work for three years just listening to ‘big men’ solve their problems." DT #2000, Jan. 1, 1933

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