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Friday, September 13, 2013

Predicting Is Hard, Especially About the Future

I love the fall. I love moderating temperatures, the leaves turning color, and football. Especially football.

My mother has had a year long battle with cancer which she is winning. It requires a lot of maintenance  and vigilance but at some point, mom would just like her life to return to normal. She's been a good soldier, battle weary, but still doing the things that are important.

So this week, mom asked one of her doctors how many more visits she was going to have to make to the hospital. The doctor said anywhere from 5, to maybe 7 visits. He then patted her on the leg and said, "Predicting is hard, especially about the future." He turned and walked out of the room.

I giggled about that all day. I even looked that phrase up- it sounded so Yogi Berra. But I think the credit actually should go to an old time physicist, Niels Bohr.

Predicting, as it turns out, is really not that difficult at all. Doing it accurately, well that's a whole different story. Here then are some of my random, very random, thoughts and predictions this week.

10. Do not get in a head butting competition with John Kerry. Can you imagine Kerry stumbling out of some S. American jungle into a headhunter village? Kerry (first I hated war and now I love war) has been in the news all week. Obama's "airstrikes for peace" program has been averted by the inadvertent actions of his Secretary of War State. So that is good.

9. Boise St v. Air Force tonight. This is the story of two formerly good programs going mediocre. I see BSU winning by 21. If AF manages to stay closer, the fans in Boise are in for a long season.

8. Gold and silver. Absolute screaming buys at 1300 and 20 bucks. Buy some and lock it up.

7. Quantitative easing or QE will end. The FED will begin to taper this month. The wild card is the new chairman.

6. Obama will appoint Larry Summers as FED chairman although he is pretending not to have made his mind up. It's the good ol boys club, and Janet Yellen ain't in it.  

5. Bond yields will continue their ascent. Once the 10 year yield breaches 3.5%, things are going to get really interesting. Despite rising yields, banks will continue to screw depositors.

4. Congress will raise the debt ceiling this fall by an amount not likely to trigger another fight until after the 2016 elections.

3. Oil prices are going down. Big time. The world is decelerating and we are awash in supply. Would not be surprised to see oil sub 80 bucks a barrel before Christmas or a 30 dollar decline from here.

2. The only people signing up for Obamacare this fall will be the poor and uninsured. Premiums on the exchanges will rise by at least 20% in 2014.

1. I have this odd feeling, like some giant-leviathan sized event is about to take place. This would be a re-tracement or repeat of the period following the 1929 Great Depression and the economical nadir that took place from 1934 to 1939- about five years after the initial shock.

Gamblers love to make predictions. We will bet on anything. From football to horse racing, I am forever trying to predict the outcome of some event. I will never forget a t-shirt I saw once at a horse racing tournament in Las Vegas that read, "Often wrong, never in doubt." Gawd, if that ain't the truth.


Marcus said...

I have no use for religion, Brian, I think it's a load of crap, but I do believe there is a God and I've just put in a word with the man upstairs on behalf of your Mom. I hope she beats it.

Brian said...

Thank you Marcus. Mom was given a completely 100%, cancer free diagnosis a month ago. The treatments have left her emaciated but she is getting better. Thanks for swinging by. I appreciate it.