Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The 10 Worst Predictions for 2008.

Foreign Policy is listing it's ten worst predictions of the last year and it's no surprise to find Bill Kristol right at the top of the list with this gem:

“If [Hillary Clinton] gets a race against John Edwards and Barack Obama, she’s going to be the nominee. Gore is the only threat to her, then. … Barack Obama is not going to beat Hillary Clinton in a single Democratic primary. I’ll predict that right now.” —William Kristol, Fox News Sunday, Dec. 17, 2006
Jim Cramer runs a very close second with this:
“Peter writes: ‘Should I be worried about Bear Stearns in terms of liquidity and get my money out of there?’ No! No! No! Bear Stearns is fine! Do not take your money out. … Bear Stearns is not in trouble. I mean, if anything they’re more likely to be taken over. Don’t move your money from Bear! That’s just being silly! Don’t be silly!” —Jim Cramer, responding to a viewer’s e-mail on CNBC’s Mad Money, March 11, 2008
And still on the subject of the economy we have this classic:

“[A]nyone who says we’re in a recession, or heading into one—especially the worst one since the Great Depression—is making up his own private definition of ‘recession.’” —Donald Luskin, The Washington Post, Sept. 14, 2008

The day after Luskin’s op-ed, “Quit Doling Out That Bad-Economy Line,” appeared in the Post, Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy, and the rest is history. Liberal bloggers had long ago dubbed the Trend Macrolytics chief investment officer and informal McCain advisor “the Stupidest Man Alive.” This time, they had some particularly damning evidence.

But worry not, no-one featured on the list has to worry that employment will dry up any time soon. And Kristol is especially guaranteed to be allowed to continue to spout his partisan rubbish to Fox News who are more interested in him saying what they want to hear than they are in hearing from anyone who actually knows what they are talking about.

After all he survived spouting this piece of right wing crap:
We are tempted to comment, in these last days before the war, on the U.N., and the French, and the Democrats. But the war itself will clarify who was right and who was wrong about weapons of mass destruction. It will reveal the aspirations of the people of Iraq, and expose the truth about Saddam's regime. It will produce whatever effects it will produce on neighboring countries and on the broader war on terror. We would note now that even the threat of war against Saddam seems to be encouraging stirrings toward political reform in Iran and Saudi Arabia, and a measure of cooperation in the war against al Qaeda from other governments in the region. It turns out it really is better to be respected and feared than to be thought to share, with exquisite sensitivity, other people's pain. History and reality are about to weigh in, and we are inclined simply to let them render their verdicts.
It's that wonderfully condescending tone he hits whilst being utterly wrong that most amuses me. Of course, both history and reality rendered a completely different verdict than the one Kristol so patronizingly predicted, but that won't stop him pontificating throughout 2009.

It's what he does. The real wonder is that he gets away with being so wrong, so often, and is still treated as a serious commentator.

Click title for the list.

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