I’ve been looking at my predictions for 2016 made this time last year. It’s extraordinary — don’t check, just trust me — all 12 of them came true. If you had placed a £1 accumulator bet on my forecasts that Britain would vote Brexit, Trump would be elected US President, and that Scarlett Moffatt off Gogglebox would win I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here, you wouldn’t need to read The Spectator any more — just the Forbes Rich List, where you’d come just between Warren Buffett and Carlos Slim.
1. 2017 will be one long vampire scream from the liberal elite.
That moment when Christopher Lee finally gets staked through the heart: this is how it’s going to sound all year as all those vested interests now swamped by the tide of history and crushed by fortune’s wheel — Remoaners, Davos Man, the Eurocrats, US Democrats, green activists, everyone on Quentin Letts’s Spectator list of the most annoying people, etc — rage, rage, rage against the dying of their light.
2. Theresa May will endlessly disappoint.
I’m more than happy to be proved wrong here but my fear is that Theresa is not going to be the heir to Maggie, nor even to Blair, but merely the heir to Dave. Her failure to nix the overpriced, outdated Hinkley Point C nuclear power station and the landscape-ravaging white elephant that is High Speed 2 was but a taste of the stupidity to come. Next, she’ll be giving the nod to that lunatic tidal energy project in Swansea Bay and before you know it there will be some stupid little wind turbine on No. 10.
3. Another bumper year for the candle industry.
Across Europe, moving vigils will be held to commemorate the victims of the latest wave of atrocities committed by Islamic State. Landmarks will be symbolically illuminated in the colours of the flag of the affected country, as will people’s Facebook and Twitter profile pics. Then the news cycle will move on.
4. Fake news stories about ‘fake news’ will proliferate.
That’s because ‘fake news’ is the liberal-left media’s new ‘dog ate my homework’ — the catch-all excuse which explains everything from the British public’s stubborn refusal to regret voting Brexit to the rise of ‘far-right’ movements across Europe to the worse-than-Hitler-like disaster that is President Donald Trump. Safely reassured that only through lies have the bad guys won, the BBC, the Guardian and their fellow travellers can carry on like they’re Bourbons in 1789 and their righteous reign is going to last for ever.
5. My family will come round to realising how cruel and wrong it is to deny a man the chance to do the thing he loves most in the world.
Not mentioning any names but f*x h***ing.
6. I will start to become incredibly rich with the help of that hedge fund I mentioned a while back, Cool Futures.
As far as I know it’s the first fund to bet on both global cooling and on the collapse of the renewables industry — which would seem to me pretty sensible plays in 2017, as the La Niña effect drives temperatures down and as Donald Trump begins to unwind the great green Ponzi scheme.
7. Trump. I’m going out on a limb here but I think he’s going to be great — by far the best US president since Ronald Reagan. (Mind you, given the competition, how hard could that be?) We forget now that the GOP establishment did everything it could to sabotage Reagan’s presidential bid and that all the clever, informed people just knew that Reagan would be a disaster because he was a stupid cowboy, a dumb actor and a warmonger whose attitude to the Russians was quite wrong and who upset the Chinese by saying incorrect things about Taiwan. The smug elite consensus on Trump is worthy of a bunch of Remoaners: seriously people — look at yourselves and get a grip.
8. One of my children will put a dirty plate in the dishwasher or walk the dog without being asked to do so.
This won’t, of course, happen in 2017 or any time in the next decade. But a chap’s allowed to dream, is he not?
9. My Bitcoin will go up even more.
But this won’t be good news. Owning large sums of money in electronic form is terrifying because all it takes is one tiny glitch — or one cybercrook — to make it vanish into the ether. Also, its rise will be a function of one of the scarier trends right now: attempts by governments to abolish cash, the better to tax us till we bleed and to make their barmy and immoral use of negative interest rates more dangerously, viciously effective.
10. I might actually write another book.
Like sex, the more you talk about it the less you do it. But Stephen King is quite right: unless you can discipline yourself to write 2,000 words a day — regardless of quality, at least for the first draft — you’re going to spend far too long agonising over sentences and, ooh look, is that a funny thing someone just said on Twitter? And before you know it you’re another year closer to death with nothing to show for it.
Subscribe to The Spectator today for a quality of argument not found in any other publication. Get more Spectator for less – just £12 for 12 issues.