Predictions From 2016
Time to check how well I did with my predictions for 2016. (If you click on the link, you'll notice there are also some predictions in the comments section.)
Hillary Clinton will be the next President, winning the Electoral College handily.
Like everyone, I was way off. I do have a lame excuse. First, she did win the popular vote pretty handily. Second, I gave Trump a 10% to 20% chance of winning. I know that doesn't sound like much, but imagine someone is about to roll a die, and says to me "hey smart guy, what are the odds I'm going to roll a 6?" I'd respond "around 16%." Then he rolls and gets his 6, and say "well, I guess you're not so smart after all."
There will be no brokered GOP convention.
One for me. This may not sound so brilliant, but remember a year ago this seemed like a distinct possibility.
The Trump factor makes my crystal ball very cloudy, but I predict Marco Rubio will get the nomination. Further, he will choose a woman or a Midwesterner (or both) for his running mate.
This is correct--the Trump factor made the whole year blurry. Otherwise, way off, though I'll give myself an eighth of a point for guessing there'll be a GOP running mate from the Midwest.
President Obama will make some very controversial pardons (though this may happen in early 2017).
I think I get this one. He's not only made a ton of pardons, but has had (as I should have clearly predicted) a highly controversial lame-duck period.
No Republican or Democrat who has run for the presidential nomination will run as a third-party candidate (even though there are already rumblings such a thing will happen).
Once again, might not seem like a brave guess, but this idea, as I noted, was in the air a year ago.
The Supreme Court will decide 5-4 that states can't compel government employees to pay union dues.
The Supreme Court will decide 5-4 that the University of Texas affirmative action program is unconstitutional (and colleges will continue to ignore the Supreme Court's rulings on this issue).
The Supreme Court will strike down new regulations in Texas for abortion clinics.
One thing I didn't predict was Justice Scalia's death, and so I declare these predictions inoperative.
There will be no new Supreme Court Justices seated in 2016.
One for me, and this turned out to be a braver guess than expected--if you'd asked a lot of people this question mid-February, they'd have said the opposite.
There will be no major, organized terror attack on U.S. soil.
This, alas, is a judgment call. However, even with incidents like the Orlando nightclub attack, I don't think we had anything that you'd call truly organized.
ISIS will be better contained in 2016 than in 2015.
I think this is correct, though some may disagree.
Assad will remain firmly in power.
No significant progress will be made regarding Israeli-Palestinian relations.
Check. If anything, the opposite.
Justin Trudeau will go down significantly in the polls.
This seems to be true, though perhaps helped along by how he gushed over Castro.
By the end of the year the Dow will be closer to 19000 than 18000 (though a lot of this depends on the election).
The Dow certainly started rising after the election, though I'm not sure if it's due to the Dems losing, or the sense of uncertainly gone. Anyway, the Dow is now well above 19000, which I'd say makes me correct, though maybe the guess should have been whether it will be closer to 19000 or 20000.
By year's end employment will be slightly under 5%.
I'd say I got this right.
Gas prices will be significantly higher than they are now (which is about 2 bucks a gallon).
I don't know the December number, but as of the end of October, it was about 15 to 20 cents higher. I'm going to call that significant. (In L.A. at that time, it was pretty close to 3 dollars.)
The BCS Bowl will have Alabama beating Clemson. (This prediction was made before the Cotton Bowl and the Orange Bowl.)
45-40. I called it.
The Panthers will win the Super Bowl.
The Broncos didn't have too much trouble putting away the Panthers.
The Wolverines will do well, but not better than their 9-3 regular season record in 2015.
I guess they did do better, but in some ways, it was more painful, spending so much time undefeated, ready for a shot at #1.
I was going to predict Star Wars: The Force Awakens will become the highest-grossing domestic film of all time, but it's hardly a prediction now.
True then, true now.
The new Ghostbusters will not do as well as hoped. Hail, Caesar will also be a disappointment. Finding Dory will be huge.
Called all three.
Season six of Game Of Thrones--now completely off book--will be better than season five. Jon Snow will be alive, one way or another. By the end of the season, Arya will be back on her own, having graduated from the House Of Black And White; at least one of the Boltons will die, but Littlefinger will still be alive; Daenerys will have gotten her three dragons in order and will finally be on the way back West.
Whether it was better is a judgment call--I'd say it's hard to tell the difference. Snow was alive (or came back to life). Arya looked stuck on Braavos for a while, but made it out by the end. The whole house of Bolton bought it, while Littlefinger is still maneuvering. Dany is finally going West with her dragons, which we've waited the entire series to see. Should have guessed we'd see the Hound again as well.
I don't remember a year where there were so few clear favorites for the Oscars. Leonardo DiCaprio will win Best Actor for The Revenant due to all his hard work and lack of competition. Cate Blanchett would easily win Best Actress for Carol if she didn't have two already, so Brie Larson will win. For Best Supporting Actor, no room for Spotlight or Stallone, so Mark Rylance will inch out Christian Bale. For Best Supporting Actress, if they can't vote for Blanchett they can vote for Rooney Mara. For Best Picture Spotlight and The Big Short will fight it out (don't see The Martian as being a contender), with Spotlight being the safer pick.
Four out of five. Not bad when you're guessing two months out.
Leo won. (I should also have predicted he'd hijack the event to make a political speech.) Brie Larson won. Mark Rylance won. I was wrong about Rooney Mara--Alicia Vikander took it.