Let it be known that I am not a prophet, and I will quite happily eat crow, eat my hat, eat my words… eat whatever is necessary when my prognostications prove preposterous and my prophecies prove to be not prophetic, but pathetic.
Nevertheless, with my finger to the wind and my squinty eye on the guiding star, here are my random, bold predictions for 2018.
1. The Populist Conservative Swingback will continue. People really were fed up—not so much with the Democrats as a political party, but by their wacky social ideology. Their rainbow coalition of sexual weirdos, melting snowflakes, angry feministas, rainbow gaymen, Marxist ideologues, and pink-hearted limousine leftists was just too much for Mom and Pop in Nebraska to cope with anymore. That kooky coalition combined with the nightmare of Hillary and Bill drove them to elect a thrice-married, foul-mouthed billionaire with an incredible combover, a bully-boy reputation, and a Zsa Zsa Gabor-type “model” for First Lady.
But for all his outrageousness, Donald Trump is a quick learner and knows how to hire competent people. I predict he will continue to be a pretty good president. He’ll learn to keep his mouth shut a bit more, and in addition to boosting an economic boom he’ll probably (through listening to good advice) pull off a couple more foreign-policy triumphs. Unless there’s some horrible, unforeseen disaster, the investigations against him will wither away, and he’ll cruise to further victories and re-election in 2020.
2. The mainstream media will become increasingly irrelevant. The coastal media folks are slow learners. Very slow learners. They will continue to believe that they are king of the hill, when already they are down in the dumps. Ordinary folks who are, by nature, pretty conservative, will increasingly tune out. Print media will fade away, and the folks down home won’t bother to tune in online. In a desperate attempt to retain an audience, the mainstream media will continue to water down their message and go for entertainment and gossip rather than substantial news stories. Think more and more articles on “Ten Celebrities Who Have Socked on Too Much Weight” or “Ten Secrets They Never Told You About I Dream of Jeannie.
3. If a conservative cardinal is not elected on the death of Pope Francis, there will be one waiting in the wings and biding his time, and the longer the present pontificate continues, the more likely it will be that a conservative will be the next one up to bat. If so, he’ll move back into the Apostolic Palace, dust off the big miters, slip on the red shoes, flex his muscular Christianity, and there will be weeping and wailing and grinding of teeth amongst the cardinals of Germany and their pals.
4. Retail businesses will continue to be hammered by the internet Goliaths. Big department stores will stumble. Malls will close, and salespeople will find themselves picking orders in huge Amazon warehouses. Then somebody smart will put two and two together and realize that Jane Housewife might just as well stop by the Amazon Warehouse that has taken over the dead retail space that used to be a mall. She’ll pick up her order from the Amazon-Sears drive-through window and while she’s there; hey she might as well park the car and take a few moments to browse and try on her stuff with a helpful assistant…. Maybe they could just call it the Amazon Mall.
5. The Sexual Revolution will fizzle out. Hugh Hefner is dead and buried next to Marilyn Monroe. People are fed up with aggressive sexual adventurers. Women don’t want to be bunnies anymore. The flower power love the one you’re with generation are getting really old and their stamina is not what it was. Ordinary folks can see that the sexual revolution, like all ideological revolutions, ends in absurdity and violence. A younger generation can see the freaks, the disasters and the walking wounded from fifty years of perversity and they are going to step away from it into the one option that is healthy, wholesome and good: sex between one man and one woman that makes babies and families for life.
6. More books than ever will be published for fewer and fewer readers. This will continue to be a perfect storm for publishers. Books will be cheaper than ever to produce and market, but no one will want to buy them. The printed word will wither as the spoken word returns. More bookstores will close or shift to selling souvenirs. More people will get more information through the Internet, YouTube, and social media.
7. Radical Islam will start to peter out. There are reports of an amazing amount of conversions to Christianity in Islamic lands. People don’t really want to live in bondage to theocratic regimes who behead little children and who sell women and little girls as sex slaves. Not really. As rebellion simmers in Islamic countries be prepared for crackdowns. It won’t be pretty.
8. Hillary Clinton will not go away. Chelsea Clinton will start building her database and hire smart people to make her appear intelligent and electable, but she will Tweet more and undermine their efforts.
9. Europe will begin to recover her Christian roots. Atheism will die out because it is a lie. So will fashionable secular agnosticism. Poland will be the center from which a renewed Christian revival begins to spread across Europe, first in Eastern Europe, then moving West. It has happened before. While it seems impossible, it is when the pendulum swings to its furthest point that it must swing back.
11. Self-Driving Cars will advance upon us and like a disagreeable in-law, we will gradually come to accept them even if we do not love them. At first they will only be of use on the big long highways of America. We won’t trust them around town and on the back roads, but they sure will seem handy on those fifteen hour jaunts down the highway from Pittsburgh to Tampa.
12. One of Donald Trump’s sons will start laying the foundation for his presidential run in 2024.
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