The Cumberland Post

The Cumberland Post
My Backyard, Six Miles from the Cumberland River

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Crystal Balls

Lots of liberal "experts" and big time pundits are ready to whip out their crystal balls (heh) and make a prediction about the future at the drop of a hat.

They will quickly tell you what rosy things will happen if we dutifully follow Obama's plan for the US. They will also tell you what dire consequences we will face if we don't do what High Priest Al Gore and the other Green Bozos say we should do. Truth is, they're about as accurate as Jeanne Dixon (remember her?).

For example. From I Hate the Media: "Remember how the Obama administration’s Car Czar told us that General Government Motors path to future prosperity was hybrid cars? Turns out that pronouncement was about as accurate as the rest of the forecasts from this gang of economic incompetents."

June sales of hybrid vehicles have tanked, dropping below 2% of overall sales. Those prissy little vehicles that snooty liberals love to drive had their biggest market share of 3% in 2008 when gas prices were at $4.00 a gallon; in losing 1/3 of their market share, their sales have obviously dropped like the Titanic since then.

But guess what? Most "experts" had predicted a 5% share by now and one respected forecaster (obviously one of Al Gore's cadre of eco-masseuses) said their share would be 17% this year.  And you know what kind of car's market share is improving? You guessed it. SUV's. ("I hate the Media "h/t mean ol' meany)

So, if you have to speculate about the future, who do you trust? I'm usually skeptical of most predictions that go further than tomorrow. But if I must pick a prophet, give me one that knows about the past. Why? Since humans learn at a glacial pace, the past tends to repeat itself. Who knows about the past? Historians do, unless they're of the ilk that are too busy trying to revise it to suit their Marxist goals.

There is one Historian guy I trust, even when he makes a prognosis about the future. I trust him because I know he's extrapolating from a solid base of present and past knowledge.

In an interview with Blog4History, Victor Davis Hanson answers the question: "where do you see the United States in 20 years, both militarily and politically?"
VDH: I think it will be militarily preeminent, but its supremacy won’t be unquestioned when a billion-person China or India can marry their newly energized capitalist economies and limitless manpower to high-tech, Western weaponry. Our status ultimately hinges on the degree that we maintain a free market, productive economy, encourage immigration of the risk-taking and entrepreneurial, avoid tribalism and social unrest, and retain a tragic sense that military forces are necessary as a deterrent against greater evils than peacetime military expenditure. Clearly much of this depends on a competitive educational system that instill a tragic sense of self, rather than the current trends to a therapeutic curriculum that emphasize questions of self-esteem in lieu of imparting facts and inductive methodologies.
Read the complete article. It's well worth your time.

In this last paragraph of the interview, Hanson explains what the US should do to ensure its survival. These are issues of current political debate. Is he right? What do you think?

Do you think, to take his last example, what goes on in the classrooms of the US now, helping little Jack and little Jill to feel better about themselves, will produce in twenty years the kinds of citizens necessary to ensure our survival as a nation?


  1. Dan, to answer the question you posed...

    As posed, I would say "No sir! There is no way that the current education system will be able to produce citizens that will produce citizens that will ensure our survival as a nation."

    Hanson is one of my favorite historians, too. While reading this Q & A, I became quite conflicted. Often I find myself in the "The Hell With It!" mode. But then I know so many wonderful young folks personally that really do give a damn. (Blood kin to some of them)

    I really don't know, Dan. If things play out naturally you will be out of here in less than a couple of decades, and I will be out of here in about three. (HOPEFULLY!)

    I struggle with this thinking more than I can convey. I love what we have/had, and I truly do HOPE that there are enough youngsters that "get it" to keep it alive...or (and this is my greatest worry) will shed blood for it once again.

    Merciful Lord, I hate those thoughts. But, I fear that's what my boys will face.

    Man...that was a weird comment, huh?

  2. I recently read that hybrids need a new battery after 8 years and that cost from 5 to 10 thousand bucks. They have very little resale value.

    Sadly I see the West heading to the Brave New World of state serfdom because the majority of kids have been indoctrinated with commie ideas. A few will keep the flame of freedom burning and maybe one day, long after we're gone, maybe we'll go back to" a competitive educational system that instill a tragic sense of self."

    As usual VDH nails it.

  3. I'm usually skeptical of most predictions that go further than tomorrow.

    I'm cautiously hopeful about predictions of a Democrat wipe-out in November. The result of the mid-terms may answer some of your other questions.

    Like Andy, I know a lot of young people who still "get it." Some of these young people (age being relative) have kids of their own and are raising them "right." I think the US is in good shape for another generation or three.