Thursday, December 27, 2012

New Year Predictions 2012 - Review

Another year gone, another batch of predictions to review. Some particularly notable predictions are: Civil War and the the Resurgence of Nationalism, The original post is posted here unmodified with all of the comments and scores listed in red text.

July Review: 36/75 - 48% accuracy (Not bad for 1/2 way through the year)
Dec Review: 57/75 - 76% accuracy (I have until the 1st to amend this data. 1/30 - Updated GDP to reflect Q4 prediction accuracy.)

So, what went right? Surprisingly, quite a few points were outstanding -

  • War Starts With Civil War and a Resurgence of Nationalism. (Start of the Asiatic war North/South Korea, Syria, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq)
This little prediction was my lead prediction and it paid off massively. With such precision on the above mentioned, especially Egypt, and a delicious little surprise bulls-eye on Uganda it was a incredibly good call! The push for nationalism took off exactly as expected and the final case for globalism has started in earnest.
  • The major economic focus shifts dramatically from Europe to Asia.
Perhaps the call I took the most grief on, most people at the start of 2012 saw Asia as the perma-bull market to save the rest of the world. Yet, huge cracks appeared in the facade of the Chinese beast and Japan has been repeatedly brutalized.
  • The European Union implodes completely. Global TARP (EFSF) fails as firewall after firewall is breached. It may cease to exist nominally as the EU, but its Phoenix Transformation still awaits. 
With an implosion of market after market the EFSF, the much vaunted economic savior of the EU died repeatedly. In addition, we got a literal phoenix display at the London Olympics.
  • a Constitutional Crisis emerges
What was wrong with the call is that the reason for the crisis was political, not economic. Most of the ultimate feedback to the crisis resulted in the November secessionist movement.
  • Things break down. As resources continue to dive, local alliances are formed to compete for these resources. 
Cities in CA were especially hard hit as bankruptcies actually started happening.
  • The U.S. College bubble begins to pop (The bubble exploded, but the schools are still riding the loan wave as kids are being herded into schools)

The contrarian curve ball of  2012, I liken it to my 2005 prediction of a housing collapse.

But what went wrong? There were two predominate problems with the predictions:

1) Culture - Numbers are easy to judge, either you hit it or you didn't. Something that's intangible such as 'value' is far more difficult to assign a yes or no to unless it's blatantly obvious. (Like the increasing recognition of the manosphere)  (-4 points)

2) The US election - I thought for sure that the right would find its base of power federally. It turns out they're centered in the States and the left is running the Feds. That changes my outlook somewhat as to what the goal is for the US at this point. (My script saw the reactionary left utilizing the unemployed youth to wage war on an 'indifferent' right Federal war machine.) Most of the economic misses were probably due to a (now repeated) lack of understanding as to just how far an administration will go to paper over the problems. (As Denninger points out, "I never would have believed The Fed could actually buy up nearly a trillion dollars worth of various instruments and hit the middle and lower classes to the degree they had and get away with it.  They have -- thus far.")

(Original post below)
New for 2012!
Yearly Theme: Are we responsible for our own actions?
This question becomes the fundamental litmus test for most every action and decision in the future.

War - 2012
The idea of a World War moves into the mainstream by becoming a probability instead of a possibility. People begin to realize that the only way presented to get out of this will be to fight. Let us pray that they realize who the correct people to fight are.(Syria, Iran, China, Russia, Muslim countries, this is now certainly the case. +1/1)

War Starts With Civil War and a Resurgence of Nationalism
Civil war leads the way as regional conflicts devolve into national wars. (The US is talking secession, Trayvon Martin in the US stokes racial tensions, the Chicago NATO summit stirs the pot and gets violent, Syria, Libya, Egypt, Iraq, Spain/Catalonia, lead the way. Greece is rumored to collapse into civil war. +1/1)
Nationalism takes center stage again as there is a temporary shift away from the "Union / Globalism" mentality in order to demonize and bury Nationalism once and for all. This can be observed in patriotic displays of loyalty to one's home country as the globalists demand fealty to their flag in an attempt to demonize it. (Well, well, well, it turns out that Bilderberg has been preaching the evils of Nationalism for almost 50 years. Pat Buchanan notes the 'rise of nationalism', Russia is "united", Israel is "united", "Ultra-nationalism" appears to be the term of choice +1/1)

The draft discussion becomes prevalent again. "Not enough boots to go around" combined with talks of "National Pride" and "Supporting one's country" (Afghan General Stanley McChrystal kicks off the discussion +1/1)

Outright War 
Start of the Asiatic war (Late Q3 - Q4) - With the US being over committed, it can't back up its positions in other countries, the East sees this and starts moving. Fires break out faster then they can be put out. (The US moves to 'defend' the Phillipines, puts pressure on the ASEAN bloc to contain China, Japan move to nationalize the Diaoyu Islands, Japan uses water canons on Chinese fishing boats)  +1/1) 

Theaters of war
The major economic focus shifts dramatically from Europe to Asia. The economic downturn moves to Asia, setting the stage for war with these countries later. Stagflation takes hold most everywhere (+1/1)
  • Asia
  • Russia, China (Too bad I didn't articulate a prediction here - Russia embraces China +0/0)
  • Europe
  • North America
    • Canada staggers (Protests over tuition rises lead to riots, riots,  +1/1)
    •  The United States
      • Asset prices file in giant fits (20 - 40%) as positions are sold to protect themselves (Silver starts out +20% for January, Gold 11%, 2/29/2012 Silver flash smash to the tune of 10% in 1/2 hour, Electricity is spiking massively,. +1/1)
          • Commodities
            • Oil - Oil has solidified above $100. $130 - $150 is the next target with a Iran led upside of $200 - $250. (And the rally starts at $110, oil exploded upwards in Q1 but pulled back harder in Q2, ultimately it ends in a huge miss. +0/1)
            • Gold - Gold and silver have temporarily bottomed. Gold takes out $1700 easily and quickly closes in on $1800. After it breaches $1900, there is a sell off as the wild market fluctuations come into play. (Q1 +  Q2-) Target range is $2000 - $2300. (Gold takes $1700 in the first month, $1800 in the second and collapses back to $1650. Retakes 1800 after QE Infinity is announced and sets the target at $2400 an ounce. +2/4)
            • Silver - Silver takes off like a lion again but also suffers just as badly. Initial stop is at $48 as it takes out the previous high. At this point speculators pile on and take it to $75. After this it gets destroyed back to the low $50 range. (Practice in Q1 gets it to $37, Sept has silver rocketing, silver then pulls back to remain flat for the year. + 0/3)
            • Copper - Decouples from industry and becomes a poor man's silver investment. (10 - 20% gains) (Copper takes off like a rocket +16% and then collapses back to the bottom. +1/1)
            • Cotton
      •  US Dollar officially goes inflationary. Printing comes in one form or another (Operation Twist 1 and 2, QE 3 is on the radar, Bernanke's talking pumping, QE 3 is unleashed and the dollar takes a dive! +1/1)
      • Posts first official negative GDP. (In response, the market tanks) (GDP posts negative, Official Q2 is revised down a stunning 24% to 1.3, no 'official' negative. Late, but official Q4 -.01%  +1/1)
        • In response a Constitutional Crisis emerges (In truth it has existed for a long time) (Obama appoints positions and then 'chides' SCOTUS, North Dakota looks to jettison its property tax, Florida is suing the Feds over votes, Eric Holder invokes the magic words, Washington Times weighs in, Holder might be arrested, +1/1 - Seriously, there should be bonus points for this)
          • More "desperate" Keynesian solutions are floated as a dramatic attempt to "shock" the economy back to life. If enacted, it will ultimately fail. (Ex-head of the FDIC 'humorously' floats giving every household $10 million!, Krugman just can't get enough,  QE3 is an open ended purchase of just about anything. +1/1)
          • Citizens favor giving less people more power to "fix" it (Note - This is one of the goals these bloodsuckers want) ('Eminent Domain' is expanded off the Kelo decision to fix 'urban blight', no specific call from the people +0/1)
          • Social programs are demanded in an attempt to 'restore America' but the economic argument now trumps 'societal values'. This leads to screeching about the inherit "injustice" present in the system as the freebies come to an end in austerity. (The Wisconsin recall election is the case model. San B is beginning to charge for services you're taxed for.   +2/2 )
          • Things break down. As resources continue to dive, local alliances are formed to compete for these resources. (Cities are especially hard hit, including Detroit,  Stockton and Compton CA, Camden NJ is a wreck. Barter is becoming a new 'in' thing +2/2)
        •  Corporations now rule (Corporate profits are up, JPM loses BILLIONS,)
          • Repatriate the money - Corporations attempt to hide behind the Congress and demand a return of 'offshore funds'.(+2/2)
      • At least one state (Illinois?) seriously contemplates bankruptcy (In the end it ends up being bailed out by the Fed) (Could it be California? Or perhaps Michigan? Obama floats 'helping', cities declare emergency, Scranton, San Bernardino, California, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, Texas and Virginia are headed for a fiscal cliff. Illinois Governor is talking about Federal guarantees, The Feds buy a prison from them, +2/2)
      • Food stamp use soars (The Dept of Agriculture is trying to get everyone on it, College students are using it, a record 46+ million Americans or 15% of the population, another huge increase. +1/1)
      • The U.S. College bubble begins to pop as longstanding institutions begin to slash their budgets to remain solvent. Some even discuss closing outright. (Start of the "education crisis".) This will be a long recovery as the perception that "education" = "money and success" will be difficult to break. (The problem is significantly worse then previously reported. 33% of their finances are 'wobbly'Univ of California and one in N.C. is cutting departments, Univ of Florida is playing games and cutting IT. ACC has lost 10,000 students, student debt deliquincies surge and reach all-time high. +2/2)
        • Student loans start to slow (Rate) Teachers will lead the calls for more funding to be thrown at colleges in an attempt to "save education". (The rate is still increasing, the bubble has popped but the problem has not been recognized.  +0/2)
      • Existing home sales (SAAR) plummet by at least 10% with 15-20% being the more likely range. (4.5 million units to a bottom of 3.3 million units) Certain areas that were big on expansion before the crash, begin to resemble (Chinese) ghost towns. Eventually, gangs move into these areas abandoned by the local populace. (New home sales plummet by 8.4% MoM, while existing home sales have actually increased  to 5 million units, the bulk of these sales are not to private parties rather to banks. Detroit has become a wasteland. + 2/3)
      • Unemployment 
        • Unemployment Weekly Claims rise again (450,000 to 525,000) range. (2Q)
        • Unemployment Rate - Note: In 2011 I intentionally predicted a rise in the rate along with all of my other stunning positions for one reason. This is a non-lose scenario. If I predicted it would stay the same, it would obviously be correct. However, seeing my stunning clairvoyance on every other issue, why would I be so wrong on this one? Simple, because the government is fudging the numbers. By inaccurately predicting a rise, when one did not occur, it stands in sharp contrast to all the other prediction. One is left pondering - Just why is this number staying the same? (The bleeding is persistent, but hasn't quite ratcheted up to that level again, claims hit 451k the week after hurricane Sandy, I'm tempted to give myself a half-point, but seeing as how on average the claims fell slightly to 375k, it's a miss.  + 0/1)

The mantra "The future is our hope" begins to become center to the recovery.  What is lost on everyone is that in order for this concept to work, you have to sacrifice now. You can't borrow from tomorrow at an inflated rate (interest) and expect tomorrow to be better when the underlying fundamentals have NOT changed. (Mitt Romney is beginning to embrace this concept in a religious way. +1/1)

Men want to marry less (See the rise of the "Sugar Daddy" enterprises. Mark Driscoll weighs in. +1/1) due to the parasitical nature of women. This results in a "marriage/woman crisis" down the road. (Marriage at lowest level ever +1/1) Churches begin to brow beat men into "growing up" and "accepting responsibility". (Already happening) (+0/1) This leads to a further schism in the churches as many churches become void of patriarchal leadership and shift aggressively to matriarchal influence. (This does not mean that men will not lead, but rather the male leadership will be massively influenced to the "injustices" being carried out on women. They will then accordingly enforce the desires of the female population.) (This is far too difficult to call, it's possible to swing some points, but I'm going to err on the side of a miss. +0/3)

Feminism takes one in the eye as mothers decide it's not economically worth it to work, but would rather stay home and raise their children. (Commentators are beginning to call for a repeal of women's suffrage +1/1)

Metrosexual males start losing market value as they begin to be perceived as weak in the eyes of women everywhere as society stops valuing "fashion". (The fall of the metro and the rise of the Alpha. +1/1)

Crime nationally rises dramatically. + 20 - 30 % (Theft skyrockets, homicides increase and assault is up. Suicides increase.) (NY subways become even more dangerous with 31.8% increase in robberies, 'Organized shoplifting' rises, flash mobs becoming commonplace,   +1/1)

Police become a gang (Us vs. Them mentality intensifies) Small - medium riots emerge as the police overplay their authority. Dallas police kill a suspect, hundreds of citizens virtually riot. (Nationalize?) The cost of policing goes up substantially due to hazard pay, deaths and low enrollment. (Already starting to happen.) This leads to turf wars - (Black vs black, black vs Mexican, cop vs gang, cop vs Fed) (Cop vs gang, the Black Panthers seize on the Trayvon Martin killing, racial shootings increase, summary executions, police shootings rise dramatically, 40% increase in gang members in the US since 2009,  +4/4 )

Customers begin to get violent. (Ding, ding - McDonald's specifically is getting some issues and more, T-Mobile gets smashed, +1/1) The mantra has been get more for less these last 30 years, now individuals who have heard this their whole lives will run int```1`2111`qo the laws of supply and demand. (McDonald's raises their price of the $1 menu) (They're doing it incognito. Change habits to $2 items and then remove the $1 items sloooowly. And then the return to $1 items to boost 'flagging' sales. +1/1) 


JP said...

It looks like you shorted yourself a point:

Churches begin to brow beat men into "growing up" and "accepting responsibility". (Already happening) (+0/1)

Should be +1 shouldn't it?

But the paragraph about the schism in churches, you don't have any real way to measure it, and in some denominations your predictions have been notably happening for some years. Odds are its only increased this year.

Why not call that prediction a wash and give it (+0\0?). You can't prove being either wrong or right about it.

Eric W. said...

"Should be +1 shouldn't it? "

The "already happening" part of the article was in place during the original article. I intentionally kept that one at 0 because I did not see enough evidence to indicate that this has risen to a higher level. (It may in fact be happening, I just find little to no substantive evidence to support that assertion)

I'm running into the same type of issues already in 2013's predictions. I often have a working document throughout the year where I start the post for predictions, for 2013 I had created in September the following -

"Bahrain (5th fleet being ostensibly kicked out?)

I was beaten to the punch on that one as I note it and raise the threshold of evidence a bit.

For the rest of the paragraph, yeah, it's a bit of an issue as it was a venture into new territory with the predictions. It's not an easy one to validate either way and I tend to use mainstream awareness to gauge that in lieu of a more measurable standard.

For the time being I will leave it as it is. If you prefer to use that as a standard, that would put the year at - 56/72 and 78%.

JP said...

Fair enough.

Nice work on the predictions btw, looking forward to 2013.

Setting mainstream awareness as a standard eh, well thats setting the bar as high as possible :)

I respect how fairly you grade your own predictions.

Eric W. said...

Thank you for the compliment. It's always great to get some substantive feedback.

As far as 2013, I'm working on those and should be able to get them up by the end of the week for certain. I'm also toying with the idea of splitting them into two sets, one now and another perhaps 3-6 months from now.