As I've said for the past few years on this blog, this is one of my favorite days of the year. It's a great time for reflection, and spending some time thinking about the future. As always, I like to review my predictions from the prior year, critique them, and present a few more. As stated in the past, I'm no expert, but the cycles continue to progess as they have in the past.
One year ago for Christmas, I sent 22 copies of Strauss & Howe's book, "The Fourth Turning" as Christmas gifts to my closest friends and family. Unfortunately, maybe two of the recipients actually read the book. Most found it too gloomy and depressing. I will present several excerpts over the coming months. The book published in 1997 has been right on the mark with it's forecasts and predictions.
Here are my predictions from 1/1/10 and my comments:
-"I’m betting on Puplava’s forecast of massive inflation. Buy some Krugerrands and interest in an oil well." Random Roving 10-1-08 This one was a winner and I believe it will be for many years to come. CORRECT. This was an original from 1/1/08 and still keeps on proving correct. I'll repredict the same for 2011. Worldwide money printing appears to continue and can only raise prices and destroy currencies. Watch for the point when interest rates start to tick back up. Congrats to my buddy, Magoo, who bought his first Krugerrand in 2010. Buy some more in 2011.
-Oil: $150/barrel before $50/barrel - I'll repredict the same for 2010, but the price will likely not see either. INCORRECT/CORRECT. Oil hovered around $70/barrel for most of the year. I believe that prices will average over $100/barrell for 2011.
-All four outcomes still seem to be possibilities. I'm still convinced that massive inflation is coming. Massive deflation could be right behind. STILL IN PROGRESS. Three of the four potential outcomes still appear to be possibilities. The probability of the Obama administration "wowing" us in the next two years is very unlikely in my mind. I'm still convinced that massive inflation is coming. Massive deflation could be right behind. From an Austrian economic definition, we are already deflating due to the contracting money supply. This one is the $64,000 question.
-Saints win the Superbowl in 2010!!! - This was originally predicted on 10/1/08. This one is looking good despite two recent losses. I'll be considered a genius if this one plays out. Go Saints!! CORRECT!!! It will be hard to top this one.
-I believe that the "sheeple" were awoken over the past fifteen months. It has become apparent to many that all of the pastures are not guaranteed to be "green" forever. Linear thinking might be giving way to cyclical or chaotic thinking. STILL IN PROGRESS. It appears that the "linears" are still in the majority while the cycle vibrates on.
-The continued printing of money by the Federal Reserve will wreak more havoc across the worldwide markets. Volatility is the new "norm". CORRECT. Not only has the Fed printing like mad, but the rest of the world is following suit. "We've only just begun." The Carpenters
-Commodities gone wild: Things will rise rapidly in price....food, fuel, gold, oil, grains, uranium, copper...... CORRECT. What a year for gold, silver, and corn!
-I don't know if it will happen in 2010, but I believe that one of the next "too big to fails" will be JPM Chase. They hold more derivatives than any other company in the world. We've just seen the beginning of the derivative implosion. Remember, Warren called them "weapons of mass destruction". STILL IN PROGRESS. Derivatives will continue to unwind. They blamed the 2008 massacre on mortgages, but at the core was a derivative gambling casino. Much more to come.
-Protests and riots will continue to increase across the world. The mob is getting angrier and angrier. College campuses will continue to "heat up". The younger generation is awaking to the fact that their parents squandered their future. "Mom and dad, thanks for the debt burden!" CORRECT. Not a good time for a Greece or UK trip. You might catch a rock in the head.
-Politics will get even uglier. The foundation for the new 3rd party is forming. The Peter Schiff Senate race will be interesting to watch. CORRECT. I don't think that anyone would argue about this one. The Schiff Senate Race turned out to be a dud though. In due time!
-The mob will get even more angry. Beware of the angry white American man carrying the Bible.
CORRECT. The mob is angrier than ever. The angry white American bible carrying man hasn't made his statement yet.
-Politicians ratings will continue to fall aligning with a continued decline in mass social mood. Incumbents beware. CORRECT/INCORRECT. The ratings fall is dead on, but a few incumbents survived. Not for long though. 2012 will be a political bloodbath.
-The Heartland Theory will continue to play out for many years to come. The two "R's", religion and resources, will keep the Middle East on the front headlines. The "R's" will expand well beyond the Middle East before this is over. CORRECT. This will continue to play out for 25 years.
-The President will continue to "take a beating". Read the "The Fourth Turning" for the details. He's been called a non-US citizen, a Communist, a Fascist, and a Socialist. What is left? CORRECT. Much more to come at a higher level. Tighten up the Secret Service.
-Xenophobia will continue to increase. Muslims and Mexicans will continue to be the easy targets. Which group or culture is next? Will the U.S. fragment and all will say "California, that's your problem!". CORRECT. The anti-Muslim sentiment is frightening. Propaganda and the Fox News Patriots will keep this one on the front burner. You can't continue country occupation and seizing resources without some "fear factor" driving it. Where's Osama???
-The "patriotic" drums will beat even louder. The love for "our troops" will increase. Nationalism will continue its rise. You will be questioned by the "so called patriots" whether you really love your country. CORRECT. If you disagree, turn on Fox News.
-The "outer layer of the onions" will continue to struggle. Keep an eye on Iceland, Dubai, California, Honduras, Columbia, Argentina, Mexico, Iran, Pakistan, Detroit, Hungary, and Greece. CORRECT. My list was way too short. The PIIGS continue to lead the pack to destruction.
-Things built on "sand" will continue to struggle: California, Dubai, Arizona, Florida, and Las Vegas. Golf courses and cities are not naturally aligned with the habitat of a desert. CORRECT. These will be great bellwethers to watch.
-Families will move geographically and emotionally closer. IN PROGRESS. This will occur over the next 10-15 years. See "The Fourth Turning".
-Materialism will begin to fade toward more important things: family, God, friends, and true happiness. IN PROGRESS. This will occur over the next 10-15 years. See "The Fourth Turning". The trend toward "simplifying" is in progress.
-Gluttony and obesity will evolve back to more natural levels. YET TO COMMENCE. This will occur over the next 10-15 years. Gluttony still appears to be the "American Way".
-Religion will become smaller, "deeper", and more traditional. The megachurch and megamillionaire ministers might have seen "the peak". Hopefully they saved all of those millions from the book deals. The trend toward more "traditional" might spark some old flames. Keep an eye out for increased religious conflict though. The most hypocritical will be Christian vs Christian. Northern Ireland will be one to watch. IN PROGRESS. Ted Haggard kicked off the trend and Robert Schuller was the next major pillar to fall. When will Joel Osteen's basketball palace collapse?
Well that's a critique of my 2010 predictions. Now, what about 2011?? I believe that my perspective has not waivered. The cycle continues on so these developments will only deepen and intensify. The worldwide manipulation of the financial system will have grave consequences. We've stolen from the next two generations and I'm not sure if they will ever forgive us. I see the "angry and fear" cycle heading up to the next level in preparation for a frightening 2012. The Mayan Calendar fear will make Y2K look miniscule. It's easy to stampede a herd. Just scare the leaders and the rest will follow. Also keep an eye on the continued toppling of cultural icons. Tiger Woods, Brett Favre, and John Edwards are just the beginning. We build them up during the "up cycle" and tear them down during the "down cycle". Will the cycling doping scandal take Lance Armstrong down? Will Hannah Montana take another bong hit?? The "live" CNN camera feed of the BP oil spill was very symbolic. The magnifying glasses are turned on to "high power". Celebrities, politicians, and corporate CEO's beware.
I'm sticking with my same recommendations from 2009 and 2010. They still are valid and wise.
My recommendations for the new year:
-Take care of what is important first
-Prepare for all scenarios
-Think for yourself
-Read a lot from diverse sources
-Be aware of who's Kool-Aid you're drinking
-Turn off the TV
-Pray a lot!
May 2011 be your year!