Predictions are a fun game, nothing else. No one can tell the future. All fortune tellers are con artists. (Sorry, Dionne Warwick. Go back to San Jose. Take the I-5.)
Instead of making joke predictions like, “Michael Jackson’s nose will fall off” -- oh wait, that already happened -- I will attempt serious guesses as to what will happen in 2006.
1. Bush will make a tough anti-immigration proposal in his State of the Union speech. It will, unfortunately, prove immensely popular among a broad spectrum of the American people from union workers to conservatives nervous about national security to Perot voters to racist yahoos and will become an important issue for a Republican Party that is increasingly contemptuous of free market ideas.
2. Hillary Clinton will hang tough to her moderate course on Iraq and national defense, enraging leftists. Her stature will grow as she lets her unhinged base make her look good by comparison. The media will gladly go along with the story: Hillary is a mature, serious centrist that Americans can trust in the Oval Office. She will be reelected easily to her Senate seat in November. With all of the county-by-county connections of the Clinton machine still in place across America, no one can touch her in the 2008 campaign to become the Democrat nominee for president. (Don’t forget, she is married to a man with a phenomenal memory for detail. I imagine him advising Senator Clinton, “When you go to Peoria, meet Mr. X. Ask him about his daughter majoring in liberal arts and his interest in Japanese gardens.” Quite a resource.)
3. The DNC will try to make scandal an issue in the 2006 election, but the results will be so poor and they will get so many complaints from Democrats struggling for election that they will change the subject.
4. Republicans gain one Senate seat in November 2006, making it 56-44 in their favor (counting one independent as a Dem).
5. Howard Dean will continue to say stupid things that delight his base and make the rest of America wonder if Democrats are sane.
6. Republicans will run commercials with clips of Dean and other Democrats saying outrageous things. The media will denounce the Republicans as mud-throwers.
7. Democrats will pick up four seats in the House of Representatives, making it 227-206, with one independent.
8. The Lakers will make it to the second round of the playoffs and Phil Jackson will be Coach of the Year. The San Antonio Spurs will beat the Detroit Pistons in six games to win the championship.
9. The Dodgers will make the playoffs. (I’m risking my credibility as a fortune teller with this one.)
10. Things will get so much better in Iraq that even the MSM notice.
If my guesses are wrong, people will say, “Nyah, nyah, nyah.” If any guess is right, people will say, “You got lucky.” You can’t win with predictions.
UPDATE: 11. Alito will sail through his hearings. Later in the year, Bush will name his third nomination to replace the retiring 85-year old Justice Stevens.