To review the sad four year history of my annual predictions, here’s the past scorecard: 2009: 31% correct (5 of 16), 2010: 44% correct (7.5 of 17), and 2011: 50% correct (7 of 14). With that out of the way, here’s the review of 2012:
- Obama will win re-election with no fewer than 320 electoral college votes in 2012.
Obama 332, Romney 206. Score one for rholliday, but it’s downhill from here.
- Democrats will lose 1-3 Senate seats.
When I made this prediction Democrats were projected to lose five seats, but between unfortunate rape comments and surprises in Montana and South Dakota they actually picked up two seats. Maybe it should count that my incorrect guess was less incorrect than the political scientists?
- Democrats will gain 15 seats (+/-5) in the House.
Despite getting 49.2 percent of the votes (versus 48.0 percent for the Republicans) Democrats only picked up eight seats and remain in the minority.
- Tesla Motors will begin deliveries of the Model-S during July/August and will receive excellent reviews and heavy sales. They will not meet their delivery target of 7,000 vehicles for the year, but things will look good for them going into 2013.
Deliveries started in the summer, about 3000 cars were delivered by year’s end, and so long as Motor Trend Car of the Year counts as an “excellent review”, this is my second correct prediction.
- American men’s distance runners will win 2-3 medals (out of nine available) in the 1500, 5,000 and 10,000 meters at the London Olympics.
Galen Rupp took silver in the 10,000, becoming the first American since Billy Mills in 1964 to medal in that event. In the 1500 Leo Manzano roared past a number of bigger names in the final stretch to grab a silver. The prediction scorecard rises to three-out-of-five before launching into a steep nosedive.
- Following the Arab Spring of 2011, 2012 will see change spread to Iran.
Not a peep out of that part of the Middle East this year. A spectacularly wrong prediction.
- The long rumored Apple television will finally launch in 2012.
I’ve been predicting an Apple television every year since 2010, and I’ve been wrong every year since 2010.
- Despite a handful of analysts predicting doom, the Euro will easily survive 2012, and 2012 will see centralized European institutions strengthened.
After fears in 2011 that Europe would literally explode into a cloud of ash and dust that smelled faintly of spanakopita, things calmed down significantly in 2012. In terms of “strengthening central institutions”, the ECB emerged as a more powerful force, but overall this is a half-credit prediction.
- The Browns will not draft Andrew Luck or Robert Griffin III.
They didn’t draft either player, but if Washington hadn’t traded a ridiculous number of first round draft picks then the Browns would have given away almost everything to make RG3 wear orange. While technically I was right, based on the spirit of the prediction add one more to the “incorrect” column.
- Virgin Galactic’s space plane will have several successful test flights by the end of 2012. SpaceX will successfully launch two missions to the ISS but will not launch the Falcon Heavy as currently scheduled on their launch manifest.
It hurts me not to get the spaceship prediction one hundred percent correct. SpaceX had a great year, sending two flights to the ISS and moving ahead with a bunch of exciting new upgrades. Virgin Galactic has been more of a mystery, with a few drop tests but no rocket-powered flights.
- Neither the Supreme Court nor Congress will do anything to meaningfully affect Obamacare.
While there was a great deal of uncertainty leading up to the Supreme Court ruling, in the end it only added some limitations to Medicaid and the healthcare law is moving forward as designed.
- The Dow Jones will finish the year near 13,000.
The Dow closed the year at 13,104. Somehow, despite a horrid record of predictions I’ve guessed the stock market close correctly three out of the three times I’ve tried. Because jinxes are real, there will be no prediction on this topic for 2013.
- Tiger Woods will have an exciting 2012, winning 1-2 majors and 4-6 tournaments.
Tiger won three tournaments but no majors. While that’s an insanely great year for most golfers, it’s not stellar by the standards Woods set earlier in his career. The prediction scorecard again dips into the red with six correct and seven incorrect.
- Hollywood will announce that they are re-making at least one of the following five movies: Grease, It’s a Wonderful Life, Spartacus, Jason and the Argonauts, or Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.
Not even close. It’s probably a good thing that we’re not living in a world where the Twilight kid ends up playing Danny Zuko.
- Either Yahoo or AOL, or both, will not survive 2012.
After making a prediction that Yahoo would go away every year since 2009, I’m not predicting anything about these companies ever again. How both Yahoo and AOL still exist is a mystery to me.
Final score: 40% (6 of 15). While this score doesn’t beat 2009’s record for futility, it does stand as a mark that should embarrass and shame the prognosticator. However, all shaming aside, I feel confident in stating that the upcoming predictions for 2013 will challenge 2009 in the record books. Stay tuned.