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2008: What a Year

As 2008 draws to a close I think we can all agree that Americans haven't witnessed such a tumultuous year in decades. As every morning brought a new head jarring revelation that made even more difficult the process of gaining perspective and mentally arranging fast breaking events we might conclude that 2008 was, literally, extraordinary.

Consider that in January 2008 there existed an assortment of facts and quasi facts (or what I might call, for lack of a better word, a general consensus of belief) that, by year end, were turned upside down.

For example, in the first month of this year it was widely believed that Hillary Clinton would be the Democrat nominee for president, but she never recovered from her Iowa Caucus loss. In the first month of this year the employees of the fifth largest investment bank in the country, Bear Stearns, most assuredly believed they would be in business at the end of the year. Not to be. The same can be said for the employees of fourth largest investment bank, Lehman Brothers. Bankrupt.

The war in Iraq was hinging on the success of the Troop Surge strategy led by General David Petraeus (and its subsequent success was beyond the wildest expectations of its chief critic, President elect Obama). Crude oil prices skyrocketed in the summer of 2008 to over $140.00 per barrel and retail gasoline prices rose above $4.65 per gallon. Gold traded above $1,000 per ounce.

Then, beginning in June, the U S stock market began a descent that would erase 40% of its value in a six month period that was unprecedented in recent U S history. Major U S commercial banks were forced to merge or face runs by nervous depositors. The Congress passed emergency spending bills such as TARP that dwarfed ($700 billion dollars) any other special domestic spending program. Congress nationalized FNMA and Freddie Mac, an act that added an additional five trillion in debt to the federal balance sheet. The pièce de résistance of this debacle was the imminent bankruptcy of the U S auto industry if the federal government did not offer assistance.

Any student of U S history would acknowledge that the economic and political volatility that characterized the year 2008 was extraordinary. The obvious question is, where are we headed in 2009?

To borrow an idea from DJ, it would be interesting to know where readers think politics and the economy will be at the end of 2009 so I'm going to begin a series of maybe five or six posts asking readers to predict certain events that may or may not transpire during the year 2009.

For starters let's combine politics and the economy, plus a bonus question.

1) If given the opportunity, who will be President Obama's first nominee to the Supreme Court?

2) Will Republicans actually fillibuster legislation in 2009?

3) What will be the Dow Jones Industrial Average on 12/31/2009? ( Use this link for help).

4) What will be the price of crude oil on 12/31/2009? (Use this link for help).

5) Who will win the MN Senate seat, Coleman or Franken?

6) Will Rahm Emanuel be President Obama's Chief of Staff on 12/31/2009?

7) Will IL Governor Rod Blagojevich go to prison?

8) Which team will win the 2008 NCAA college football championship, Florida or Oklahoma?

Good luck and I look forward to reading your predictions.


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Comments (21)

1) If given the opportunity... (Below threshold)

1) If given the opportunity, who will be President Obama's first nominee to the Supreme Court?
He's going to owe Princess Caroline something.

2) Will Republicans actually fillibuster legislation in 2009?
Grow some balls - stand on principle. Not likely

3) What will be the Dow Jones Industrial Average on 12/31/2009? ( Use this link for help). 7,000

4) What will be the price of crude oil on 12/31/2009? (Use this link for help).
$55

5) Who will win the MN Senate seat, Coleman or Franken?
Coleman if you can't see that the fix is in you're not looking.

6) Will Rahm Emanuel be President Obama's Chief of Staff on 12/31/2009?
No.

7) Will IL Governor Rod Blagojevich go to prison?
No

8) Which team will win the 2008 NCAA college football championship, Florida or Oklahoma? Utah

1) If given the opportunity... (Below threshold)
retired military:

1) If given the opportunity, who will be President Obama's first nominee to the Supreme Court?
Hillary Clinton
2nd choice Jesse Jackson Jr
(Ginsberg and Souter will retire by the end of the year, in addition, Congress will at least attempt to add 2 more seats to the Supreme court.)


2) Will Republicans actually fillibuster legislation in 2009?

They will try to and suceed on some issues. However, I predict that Arlen Spectre and Olympia Snowe will side with the Dems moreso than republicans. All attempts at filibusters will be accused of being racially tinted and hampering the progress of the US out of the recession.

3) What will be the Dow Jones Industrial Average on 12/31/2009? ( Use this link for help).

7100.

4) What will be the price of crude oil on 12/31/2009? (Use this link for help).

$110 per barrel. Opec production cuts will raise it up some. Environmental actions by the dems will take it up even more.

5) Who will win the MN Senate seat, Coleman or Franken?

Franken. Coleman will exhaust judicial means.

6) Will Rahm Emanuel be President Obama's Chief of Staff on 12/31/2009?

Yes. Although I would be willing to bet at least 2 underlings of his will be thrown under the bus that will get more crowded as the year goes on.

7) Will IL Governor Rod Blagojevich go to prison?

No. Obama will pardon if he is found guilty of anything. We will be lucky to even have a trail in 2009.

8) Which team will win the 2008 NCAA college football championship, Florida or Oklahoma?

Florida.
----------------

Troop levels in Iraq will be down to about 75k by the end of 2009. Troop levels in Afghanistan will go down as well as the dems have ample opportunity to give up any chance of victory.

Israel will destroy Iranian nuclear facilities, however, they will take a lot of damage in a ground war before the UN steps in to prvent Israel from having to use nukes to defend it's territory. Obama will say that the US cant help that much due to Iraq and Afghanistan. Bush will be blamed for the wearing down of the US Military. Rocket attacks will continue on into 2010.

A major terrorist incident in the US will occur most likely in California or New York and will cost at least 10,000 lives. Bush will be blamed as having instigated it through his aggressive policies and not adding union workers at the docks to inspect more cargo. Thousands of Union workers will be added at docks but the percentage of containers inspected will only go up by 1 or 2 percent.

Card check will pass.

Abortion "rights" will be expanded dramatically.

Millions of illegal immigrants will be given some type of amnesty. ICE will be neutered if not shut down entirely.

Marijuana will be decriminilized federally and the states will left to decide if it should be legal or not.

The fairness doctrine will pass in some form. Conservative commentators will be still be on the air at the end of the year although I doubt they will last through 2010.

Democrats will continue to blame Bush policies on every woe that the country encouters and we will officially be in a depression by the end of the year. Unemployment will be at least 10 per cent.

UAW will get its bailout money of at least $25 billion but will go back by the end of the
year to ask for more money.

The press will continue its glorifying praises of Obama, any criticism of him will be called racist mnotivated.

1.A.G. "Moonbeam" Jerry,"I ... (Below threshold)
MPR:

1.A.G. "Moonbeam" Jerry,"I still love Linda R." Brown.
2.Not a chance.
3.245, NASDAQ 12
4.$120.00
5.Franken, Minn. deserves him for making it so close.
6.He will still be C.of S. 12/31/2016. Are you serious?
7.No, after he gets out of witness protection he will get a secret appointment as ambassador to Madagascar.
8.Champ What? Who?....... Just kidding. Well my football coaches in H.S. were from Oklahoma and our quarterback started his last year with the Sooners so, I have to go with Florida.

Sure hope you people didn't... (Below threshold)
Allen:

Sure hope you people didn't spend your hard earned money going to a fortune teller for your wish answers. To be honest, nobody knows what is going to happen, right?

1) If given the opportun... (Below threshold)
Mike G in Corvallis:

1) If given the opportunity, who will be President Obama's first nominee to the Supreme Court?

Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan, or Cass Sunstein. Obama may get the opportunity to make four USSC appointments by January 2012. (And I don't think he'll try to pack the court by expanding it -- he probably wouldn't get away with it.)

2) Will Republicans actually fillibuster legislation in 2009?

On the "Card Check" or "Fairness Doctrine" bills, if either comes to a vote. These might not be voted on, though -- both bills may be too controversial for the Democrats to risk the bad publicity. (Let's hope so, at least.)

3) What will be the Dow Jones Industrial Average on 12/31/2009?

5100. The Dow will soar in the following three years, though, as inflation kicks in.

4) What will be the price of crude oil on 12/31/2009?

$85/barrel.

5) Who will win the MN Senate seat, Coleman or Franken?

Franken, but you'll need to put scare quotes around the word "win." The result will be widely -- and accurately -- derided as fraudulent. But unlike Florida in 2000, the mainstream media won't investigate and won't make a big deal out of it.

6) Will Rahm Emanuel be President Obama's Chief of Staff on 12/31/2009?

Yes, unless he is appointed to another position.

7) Will IL Governor Rod Blagojevich go to prison?

Not in 2009. Perhaps never, if Obama takes Fitzgerald off the case. (Not necessarily by firing him; Obama could take Fitz out of the loop by appointing him to a higher position.)

8) Which team will win the 2008 NCAA college football championship, Florida or Oklahoma?

Florida.

Mike G "(And I don't think ... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Mike G "(And I don't think he'll try to pack the court by expanding it -- he probably wouldn't get away with it.)"

Actually he doesnt have a whole lot of say in it. Congress decides the size of the court. That is Obama's out as well. It will be Reid /Pelosi thing (which has to start the process) pushing it. It isnt a law that he will get to veto (not that he would if it came across his desk).

Actually he doesnt have ... (Below threshold)
Mike G in Corvallis:

Actually he doesnt have a whole lot of say in it. Congress decides the size of the court. That is Obama's out as well. It will be Reid /Pelosi thing (which has to start the process) pushing it. It
isnt a law that he will get to veto (not that he would if it came across his desk).

Oops.You're right. Let's change "Obama" to "the Democrats" in that prediction. Also, I hope that trying to expand the USSC would be a sufficiently blatant power grab that the Republicans could summon up enough courage to filibuster it. I hope ...

Also, I meant to write "January 2013" instead of "January 2012.""

1) If given the opportunity... (Below threshold)
Bob:

1) If given the opportunity, who will be President Obama's first nominee to the Supreme Court?

He will nominate a black woman, with constitutional views to the left of Harvard's Laurence Tribe.

2) Will Republicans actually fillibuster legislation in 2009?

No; enough RINOs will side with "the One" to stop any meaningful fillibuster.

3) What will be the Dow Jones Industrial Average on 12/31/2009?

9,000.

4) What will be the price of crude oil on 12/31/2009? (Use this link for help).

$85.

5) Who will win the MN Senate seat, Coleman or Franken?

Franken; he's well on his way to stealing it already. If he falls behind, his friends will "find" some additional ballots, as they've been doing since November 4.

6) Will Rahm Emanuel be President Obama's Chief of Staff on 12/31/2009?

Yes; he's tough and I suspect he's got (or will get) enough dirt on his detractors to prevent any ouster.

7) Will IL Governor Rod Blagojevich go to prison?

No. He'll still be governor at the end of 2009. He may eventually be removed and may even go to jail, but he'll be able to maneuver for at least a year.

8) Which team will win the 2008 NCAA college football championship, Florida or Oklahoma?

Florida.

ROADMAP TO ADDRESS THE LOOM... (Below threshold)
Ted:

ROADMAP TO ADDRESS THE LOOMING CONSTITUTIONAL CRISIS:

Since the Supreme Court has now prevented itself from acknowledging the question of whether Barack H. Obama is or is not an Article II "natural born citizen" based on the Kenyan/British citizenship of Barack Obama's father at the time of his birth (irrespective of whether Barack Obama is deemed a "citizen" born in Hawaii or otherwise) as a prerequisite to qualifying to serve as President of the United States under the Constitution -- the Court having done so at least three times and counting, first before the Nov 4 general election and twice before the Dec 15 vote of the College of Electors -- it would seem appropriate, if not necessary, for all Executive Branch departments and agencies to secure advance formal advice from the United States Department of Justice Office of Legal Counsel as to how to respond to expected inquiries from federal employees who are pledged to "support and defend the Constitution of the United States" as to whether they are governed by laws, regulations, orders and directives issued under Mr. Obama during such periods that said employees, by the weight of existing legal authority and prior to a decision by the Supreme Court, believe in good faith that Mr. Obama is not an Article II "natural born citizen".

Moreover, each and every member of Congress should be notified that he or she is personally liable (can be sued) for his or her own failure, or the same in conspiracy with other members, to perform what is a ministerial and constitutional duty, that is, to require and/or insist that Presidential electoral votes only be counted for candidates who are "natural born citizens" under Article II of the United States Constitution, the failure of which creates a cause of action for deprivation of claimants' constitutional rights (as allowed under the Bivens case) against employees of the Federal Government, in this case, to a lawful President and Commander in Chief, and therefore, for deprivation of adequate continuation of the United States as a Constitutional Republic. The constitutionally tortious conduct is not subject to congressional immunity and would be the jettison of Article II of the Constitution by failure to stop and/or object to the counting of electoral votes for Barack H. Obama who has admitted that at the time of his birth his father was a Kenyan/British citizen and not a citizen of the United States of America.

Finally, if 1/20/09 comes and goes with a usurper in the Whitehouse (that is, Obama is definitely NOT an Article II "natural born citizen" -- dad Kenyan/British citizen at BHO's birth -- albeit he MAY be a 14th Amendment "citizen") with usurper enablers in Congress and the Supreme Court ... God help us because many of the people will -- rightfully and under our Constitution and Declaration of Independence -- endeavor through other means to take back the Government from what is nothing less than a non-constitutional coup d'etat. (SCOTUS now does have the power to forestall that grim yet inevitable scenario, otherwise the blood and possible loss of our Constitutional Republic is SQUARELY ON THEIR HEADS.)

1) If given the opportunity... (Below threshold)
Herman:

1) If given the opportunity, who will be President Obama's first nominee to the Supreme Court?
Some legal academic you've never heard of. He better not go with Cass Sunstein.

2) Will Republicans actually fillibuster legislation in 2009?
This question, along with "Do Republicans hate Democracy?" and "Will the sun rise tomorrow?" all have the same answer.

3) What will be the Dow Jones Industrial Average on 12/31/2009?. 8,474

4) What will be the price of crude oil on 12/31/2009? (Use this link for help).
What righteous person would care? Anyway, $66.6 (thought you'd like a number you strangely find beastly, conservatives).

5) Who will win the MN Senate seat, Coleman or Franken?
Franken, of course, since in Minnesota they count ALL of the votes.

6) Will Rahm Emanuel be President Obama's Chief of Staff on 12/31/2009?
Yes.

7) Will IL Governor Rod Blagojevich go to prison?
Yes.

8) Which team will win the 2008 NCAA college football championship, Florida or Oklahoma? The world has far more pressing concerns than football. Anyway, Florida.

Shouldn't the <a href="http... (Below threshold)

Shouldn't the man-made global warming hoax be included in this list?

Shouldn't the man-made glob... (Below threshold)
MPR:

Shouldn't the man-made global warming hoax be included in this list?

11. Posted by Rovin | December 28, 2008 11:27 AM
Sorry Rovin, no mystery here. Obamalala has said the debate is over. He has appointed proponents of the GW Climate Change hoax to regulate and tax the economy into oblivion.

Mike - "Oops.You're right. ... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Mike - "Oops.You're right. Let's change "Obama" to "the Democrats" in that prediction. Also, I hope that trying to expand the USSC would be a sufficiently blatant power grab that the Republicans could summon up enough courage to filibuster it. I hope "

Pelosi, Reid and the hardcore left see this as the golden opportunity to shove "what's good for America, down it's throat". The whole host of leftist agenda they werent able to do under Clinton. They have a blank check to do what they want with the economic crisis. Count on them to hammer any democrats that show some modicum of centristism. WIth the press so firmly entrenched on their side they wont even have to cover things up, the press will make it up for them as they go along. And expect the newsprint industry to get some govt bailout money as well.

I will go you one further than the additional 2 seats on SCOTUS.

The move will be done in the name of diversity and as such Obama will appoint an openly gay judge as well as a black female to fill those 2 vacancies.

In addition, when you compare confirmation hearings for Obama nominees to John Roberts it will be like comparing Woodstock to the Inquisition.

Alright, you guys are getti... (Below threshold)
Parthenon:

Alright, you guys are getting into Fort Marcy territory. The President's gonna pack the court? Please.

I have a hard enough time trying to figure out what happened, let alone what's going to happen, but I imagine the Democrats will, for this year at least, follow the lead of the party standard-bearer and govern in a rather circumspect, barely left-of-center fashion. I expect - in the spirit of moving on - there will be no serious investigations of the Bush Administration, despite calls from Moveon and Rep. Kucinich.

And Florida by 13. Tebow's one of those players that wins tons of games in NCAA but never seems to make the jump.

1) If given the opportunity... (Below threshold)
SillyPuddy:

1) If given the opportunity, who will be President Obama's first nominee to the Supreme Court?

A dedicated leftist.

2) Will Republicans actually fillibuster legislation in 2009?

No, not successfully.


3) What will be the Dow Jones Industrial Average on 12/31/2009? ( Use this link for help).

9300. (+/- 25)

4) What will be the price of crude oil on 12/31/2009?.

$71

5) Who will win the MN Senate seat, Coleman or Franken?

Franken - people must prove what morons they are.

6) Will Rahm Emanuel be President Obama's Chief of Staff on 12/31/2009?

Yes.

7) Will IL Governor Rod Blagojevich go to prison?
Not in 2009, probably not ever.

8) Which team will win the 2008 NCAA college football championship, Florida or Oklahoma?

Who cares.

Partheon. I predict that Co... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Partheon. I predict that Congress will prove you wrong by the end of day 3 of OBama's presidency.

Parthenon wrote: Alright... (Below threshold)
Mike G in Corvallis:

Parthenon wrote: Alright, you guys are getting into Fort Marcy territory. The President's gonna pack the court? Please.

Yeah, that's as absurd as the idea that Bear Stearns, GMC, and Fannie Mae are going to go Tango Uniform on us. (Note that I've been arguing against the idea that the Democrats will try to pack the court.)

retired military wrote: The move will be done in the name of diversity and as such Obama will appoint an openly gay judge as well as a black female to fill those 2 vacancies.

I don't think "diversity" will cut it as a rationale to expand the court, but it might be a good idea to add Harold Hongju Koh (not gay AFAIK, but very pro-LGBT) and Leah Ward Sears to the mix.

Don't forget that once the ... (Below threshold)

Don't forget that once the TARP program (incredibly good idea in its first $700 Billion incarnation, incredibly overdone in its eventual $900 Billion enactment) was enacted, people started tossing around numbers equally huge with a dismal lack of concern. A $700 billion "stimulus" package, with a second one likely before Obama takes office.

1) If given the opportunity... (Below threshold)
Brad Schwartze:

1) If given the opportunity, who will be President Obama's first nominee to the Supreme Court? Richard Paez, current 9th Circus judge.

2) Will Republicans actually fillibuster legislation in 2009? Only by peeling off enough Dems to give them a comfort zone. Which will happen more than you think.

3) What will be the Dow Jones Industrial Average on 12/31/2009? ( Use this link for help). 10850. There's too much cash sitting on the sidelines for stocks not to gain in value.

4) What will be the price of crude oil on 12/31/2009? (Use this link for help).$44.50.Oil and other commodities will be the last to have money flushed in during this investment cycle.

5) Who will win the MN Senate seat, Coleman or Franken? Franken. And the GOP will F--- HIM UP!

6) Will Rahm Emanuel be President Obama's Chief of Staff on 12/31/2009? Yes

7) Will IL Governor Rod Blagojevich go to prison? Yes.

8) Which team will win the 2008 NCAA college football championship, Florida or Oklahoma? Florida. That Tim Tebow fellow's sure going places.

will there be any more mys... (Below threshold)
MF:

will there be any more mysterious deaths surrounding the Clintons?

Challenge, can anyone prove... (Below threshold)
Ted:

Challenge, can anyone prove this wrong?:-

1. Constitution Article II requires USA President to be "natural born citizen".

2. BHO's website admits his dad was Kenyan/British, not American, citizen when BHO was born.

3. BHO is therefore not a "natural born citizen" (irrespective of Hawaiian birth or whether he may be a 14th Amendment "citizen" of USA) -- as confirmed in the Senate's own McCain qualification resolution agreed to by BHO.

4. Supreme Court has already docketed two upcoming conferences, 1/9/09 and 1/16/09 -- between dates Congress counts electoral votes (1/8/09) and Presidential inauguration (1/20/09) -- to address Berg Case and fashion relief on BHO's eligibility to be President.

5. Since no facts are in dispute, Supreme Court rules on Summary Judgment to enjoin BHO's inauguration as President.

6. Therefore, BHO is not inaugurated as President.

7. Vice President Elect Biden is inaugurated Acting President under the 20th Amendment to serve until new President is determined -- the procedure for which determination to be set out by Congress and/or the Supreme Court so long as in conformance with the Constitution.




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