Big Red Car here on an exquisite ATX bluebird day. OK, it’s only getting to 60F today but, Hell, it’s winter, right?
Haha, ATX — on Earth as it is in Texas, y’all!
So, The Big Red Car is making some predictions for 2016. Here they are. 2016 predictions!
First, the rules — no half assed, politically correct, risk adverse predictions. Big, hairy, brass balled predictions. Only.
1. The economy will continue to limp along until right after the election. We will continue to suffer the head fake of seemingly low employment while having almost 95MM Americans out of the work force. The work force participation rate will become a big deal, as it should be.
2. The guys and gals who work with their hands will be in open rebellion about bringing in more illegal immigrants and continuing to lower wages and household incomes. This angry mob will determine the presidential election winner just like they delivered the Senate and House to the Republicans in 2014. It will be the year of the angry muscle workers. Even the unions will pile on and abandon the Democrats.
3. The stock markets will all get hammered and a big name — Apple — will be beaten like a rented mule. The new Apple will be Samsung. Microsoft will continue to sell you razor blades and get bigger and bigger. Apple will begin to be less of a cult and more of a company.
Go long cash for 2016. Buy that lake house.
4. The price of oil will be less than $30/bbl and will touch $20/bbl. This will be the biggest tax decrease in history but it will not be enough to spur the economy. You will go to the pump and see $1.00/gallon. Enjoy. It will happen fast particularly if we have a mild winter.
5. Obamacare will be repealed and it will be rejected like slavery which, of course, it is. The Obama legacy will be Obamacare and it will not be pretty. The Republicans will not come up with anything that works until 2018.
6. By the end of the year, the movie The Big Short will be forgotten and they will be selling subprime auto loan derivative securities in WalMart.
7. Interest rates will not be changed and the Fed and the US SEC will continue to be clueless about ……………… everything. Quick — who is the head of the SEC?
The political scene
8. The election will be the big news but the election will be driven by foreign policy, immigration, ISIS, and the Middle East [Yawn, Big Red Car, you’re putting me to sleep. The Middle East? Can you say two hand dunk shot?]
9. Donald Trump will get so damn much “earned media” that universities will begin to teach his strategy of controlling the agenda, the debate, and the air ways. The media will give him so much time that other candidates will go running to the FEC screaming “fairness doctrine.” Wait and watch. Learn.
10. Donald Trump WILL insult his way to the Presidency refuting a critical element of Jeb Bush’s campaign messaging.
11. Donald Trump will take the Republican nomination. Ted Cruz will be a close second. The issue? The outsiders v the GOPe and the Bush dynasty lies in ruins. Bush will not even make it halfway through the nominating process. It will be a very good year to be an outsider.
12. America will learn to say “President Trump” and Melania will be the hottest First Lady ever. She will be classy and very well dressed. Trump will, surprisingly, round into the job quickly and the wall will get built and — wait for it — Mexico will pay for it.
13. President Trump will serve the Chinese cheeseburgers when next they visit Washington. The Chinese will tell the world that Trump’s cheeseburgers are FANTASTIC!
14. Political scientists will suddenly re-discover the 2014 mid-terms and say, “Wow, the electorate has been mad for a long time. Wow!”
15. The GOPe will wonder what the Hell happened? We had our boy. We gave him a lot of money. WTF happened? The GOPe will finally retire to Florida where they will grapple with early onset Alzheimer’s which Trump will cure in his second term.
16. Hillary will run afoul of the FBI and her email server insanity. She will be notified that she is a “target” and she will have a tough decision to make whether to stay in the race or not. It will be too late for the Obama White House to draft a replacement. Biden is tanned, ready, waiting, and unelectable.
17. The FBI Director will go see the President and tell him, “We are going to recommend the indictment of Hillary Clinton. Your move, dude.” He will turn Attorney General Loretta Lynch loose to appoint a special prosecutor (like Patrick Fitzgerald on the Scooter Libby case) and Hillary will be toast. She will never serve a day in prison. The President will not pardon her.
18. It will be clear that Pres Obama is paying back the 2008 South Carolina affront and everybody will realize that he’s a mean SOB when you mess with his legacy.
19. Bill Clinton will prove once and for all that the use of “rape” and a political candidate’s name in the same sentence is not a winning strategy. The country will learn the names and stories of about two dozen women who had a run in with the Horny Guy from Hope. This will not be a war on women, it will be a war on boorish dipshits.
20. Some smart reporter will dig up the 1992/1996 Clinton election results and realize that Ross Perot put Clinton in the White House. Clinton’s imaginary box office appeal will be exposed just like Willie showed his willy to Paula Jones.
The military, foreign affairs
21. The situation in the Middle East will get progressively more dangerous but the ability to impact the energy markets is over. The Straits of Hormuz will become a trivia question.
22. The new Axis of Evil will be Russia, Iran, Syria, Turkey. Turkey will be unmasked as a supporter of Hamas, Hezbollah, and the buyer of ISIS’s oil at huge discounts. NATO will whisper about kicking Turkey out of their club. Russia will invite them to join theirs.
23. In eight years, President Obama will have delivered the entire Middle East into Russia’s hands while alienating every single ally the US ever had in the region. Even Israel and Saudi Arabia. Serious historians will consider it the central theme of the Obama presidency.
24. Vladimir Putin will be welcomed back into the world of civilized nations though he will be no less civilized. He will consolidate the Crimea back into Russia. He will continue to chew off chunks of the Ukraine until they pretend to rejoin Russia peacefully. He will continue to confront the US and the President through the end of the year.
25. He will show off those perky little nipples of his twice. He will threaten the Baltic states but actually do nothing.
26. The military will be horribly weakened and the new President will be “rebuilding” everything. Go long defense stocks the month before the election.
27. The Syrian Diaspora will spread radical Islam worldwide like Ebola and at mid-year Germany will wake up and lead Europe back out of the woods.
28. China will continue to build up its navy but having two ski-jump aircraft carriers will not get them out of the Toys R Us military aisle.
29. The US Navy will shift its focus to the Pacific and push back on the faux island hopping and creation by the Chinese. This will result in a couple of confrontations. The Chinese will be surprised at the effectiveness of the American submarine fleet as they are everywhere.
30. North Korea, jealous of all the attention being given to other competing shitheads, will do something SNL crazy. The new American President will take military action — limited to taking out a launching pad or some other bite sized strike — against North Korea in retaliation while the Chinese look the other way.
31. The day President Obama leaves office every general officer will expose their animosity toward this feckless Commander in Chief.
32. Iraq will be hopelessly lost and we will wish for Saddam Hussein to be brought back to life.
33. Iran will go bat shit crazy and the Iran nuclear deal will be on sale in the bargain bin at Big Lots. The new President and the Republican Congress will quietly reassert a sanctions regime.
34. Libya will be in an unending civil war and will not change the name of Benghazi to Hillaryville. Not going to happen.
35. Bashar al-Assad will celebrate New Years in his capital and will continue to rule for a long time propped up by his buddies, the Russians, who will enjoy a new toehold, warm water ports, airfields in the Middle East. We will write about how the Obama administration “lost the Middle East” the same way that we lost China in the time of Mao.
Venture capital, technology
36. There will be blood in the streets on valuations. The party will be over, the hangovers will be nursed, and the VC’s will say, “WTF were we thinking with those valuations?”
37. There will still be big winners though Uber will not be one of them. Uber will struggle to maintain its last funding round valuation and by June people will be saying, “Move along, nothing to see here.”
38. You will learn to truly hate the word “unicorn” and Whole Foods will start selling organic unicorn. It is delicious smoked.
39. Google will be well on its way to owning everything.
40. Amazon will not turn a profit but they will be close. AMS will be spun out and explode.
41. The amount of bad advice dispensed will increase exponentially while the elegant simplicity of having a vision, mission, strategy, tactics, objectives, values, culture, business engine canvas, business process graphic, and dollar weighted org chart will be rediscovered from time to time with the same enthusiasm with which Adam and Eve originally discovered sex in the Garden of Eden.
42. Coincidentally, sex has had a damn good run long term. Its popularity will continue unabated.
43. VC will take a big hit over the subject of preferential visa treatment. It will turn out that Mark Zuckerburg is not a genius when it comes to immigration and even he can’t buy the results he wants. He will be hurt but move on quickly bringing a second offspring into the world.
44. We will continue to be a nation of victims. We will anoint several other new victimhood groups.
45. The idea of a safe zone and micro-aggressions will become entrenched in colleges everywhere and people will begin to ask, “How did these dipshits get into college in the first place?”
46. Poetry will continue to be a suspect career path though colleges will not get the memo.
47. Family will continue to be in favor. You will be loved more by your family than the rest of the world together.
48. The world will continue to shrink and technology will be everywhere.
49. You will walk into two telephone poles while texting and someone close to you will be injured in a car accident while using a cell phone.
50. Your yard guy will start to take bitcoin and when you ask him “how?” he will show you.
51. Bitcoin finally turns out to be a head fake (except for your yard guy who has a master’s in English from Baylor) but the blockchain will finally blossom as a real deal.
52. The pizza delivery industry will be completely founded on the blockchain and you will continue to love your own brand. The Big Red Car likes Papa John’s. Pepperon will continue to trounce all other additives and toppings.
53. The President will give 16 more speeches until the traffic for the last one will begin to approach friends and family only. When he retires, he will launch a career as a speechifying ex-President like Bill Clinton.
54. The Big Red Car will continue to dispense wisdom which will be suspect and of questionable value to most folks but for YOU — golden. Can you argue with any of the Big Red Car’s 2016 predictions?
55. You, my friend, will have a very good year and you deserve it.