At the turn of every year, this blog asks you to predict what will happen in the New Year ahead. (We’ll do that in another post.) Lots of blogs and publications do that. But what we also do and others don’t is check last year’s predictions so that we can see who is the best prognosticator. Review them yourself here: Your predictions for 2012.
Everybody struck out completely when it came to sports predictions. No one foresaw that teams with the same name (Giants) would win both the World Series and the Superbowl.
Most people who ventured a guest correctly predicted that Mitt Romney would win the Republican nomination for president. Most also who mentioned it correctly predicted that Barack Obama would be re-elected, which was a different tune than what most of you said right before the election.
Several of you predicted the breakup of the European Union, which didn’t happen.
There were some general predictions that were true enough (Pete’s death and taxes), but we favor those that are highly specific. My brother Jimmy was right on the election results, except when he said that the Democrats would take the House, and he was close on sports, but the Oklahoma City Thunder lost to the Miami Heat in the NBA finals.
Kirk predicted that the Guinea Worm, a particularly gruesome parasite, would be eradicated. A quick Google search suggests that we are close, but this has not yet happened. (Why isn’t PETA protesting this?)
Cincinnatus made a potentially winning prediction when he said that the Supreme Court would approve Obamacare, but the brilliance of that guess was cancelled when he went on to say that Romney would defeat Obama.
I thought Rick Ritchie was going for a dramatic win when he said foresaw a secession movement. But then he said that it would be in China.
The winners made specific and unexpected predictions that came true, though they were somewhat weakened because they didn’t know when to stop.
Coming in 2nd: Tom Hering, who predicted that police departments would get permission to use drones. He picked up on the year’s biggest development in military operations, but he went on to predict outrage over police errors in zapping the wrong suspect, but I don’t think the police are using them that much just yet, and even then it seems to be for surveillance rather than SWAT duty. Still, give him credit.
First place: SAL, who predicted that the Southern Baptists would elect an African-American as their president, something that came true in June when Fred Luter was elected to that office. He also correctly predicted the dramatic drop in the American birthrate. He made 12 predictions altogether, a number of which came true, kind of (Obama was re-elected, but no vote-fraud scandal; there is a new war in the Middle East–Syria–but the US is not involved). At any rate, we’ll give him our virtual imaginary travelling trophy for 2012.
UPDATE: See the gracious acceptance speeches of SAL and Tom Hering in the comments. And, as Tom reminds us, we can also recognize the worst prediction of the year. The virtual trophy for that goes to the MAYANS.