Saturday, 2 January 2010

Hello 2010, goodbye World ...

The year of the second of Arthur Clark's Space Odyssey stories.

The new year brings a wealth of psychic predictions - lets see how many, non-trivial, will come true. Or, to be precise, how far the facts need to be bent to make them fit a prediction.

I'll leave that up to you, I prefer to track doomsday predictions. However, 2010 looks to be a pretty safe year as far as doomsday is concerned. It seems that 2012 is dominating the psychic landscape too much.

The World may not end, but there are plenty of Earth-shattering events lined up:

Prophetess Baba Vanga predicts WWIII in November, including nuclear weapons. We note that the radiation wipes out all plants and animals in the Northern Hemisphere in 2011. And yet, there are another 2000 years worth of predictions after that. Presumably the northern ecology is restarted from southern flora and fauna.

It is not just psychics: academics add the authority of junk science. For example, in Moscow, Igor Panarin's forecasts are popular. Says the Wall Street Journal, no less, he's been predicting the fall of the USA in 2010 for a while now.

Mr. Panarin posits, in brief, that mass immigration, economic decline, and moral degradation will trigger a civil war next fall and the collapse of the dollar. Around the end of June 2010, or early July, he says, the U.S. will break into six pieces -- with Alaska reverting to Russian control
... one way to make yourself popular with the government.

For intriguing commentary see The Cold Equations. The comments are also worth the read - you can scare yourself realising that many of these writers are serious.

ComputerWorld is more cautious. They know that you have to be careful when you make predictions, either they must be general enough that they fit anything or they must be already happening. Of course, they don't claim to be psychic.

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