Predictions for 2008
by Max Ashburn
As 2007 draws to a close and yet another year is about to dawn, perhaps we should look into the Magic 8 Ball and see what 2008 holds in store for us. Here are some pressing questions as we head into the new year:
Question: Will the United States elect our first woman or African-American as president in 2008?
Magic 8 Ball: Outlook not so good. I can understand where the magic ball is coming from on this one. If Hillary or Obama is the Democratic nominee for president, there will be millions of white males waking up one morning to find themselves huge Rudy Giuliani fans. However, what about a combined Hillary/Obama ticket? That might have Dick Cheney saying “let’s open the borders with Mexico and grant immediate citizenship to all Hispanic males.” President Bush, looking puzzled, would ask “But why, boss?” Cheney: “Because their machismo would never allow them to vote for a woman president, of course.”
Question: Will Iraq continue to stabilize or regress back into chaos?
Magic 8 Ball: Ask again later. Word on the street is that the troop surge has gone a long way towards decreasing sectarian violence in Iraq. Attacks and casualties are down, but the country still remains a volatile powder keg waiting to explode. Iraq’s fate lies in step with that of the greater Middle East region as a whole. Will the Kurds in northern Iraq draw Turkey into an armed conflict in that region? Will Bush attack Iran as his parting gift before he leaves office? Will the Israeli-Palestinian conflict bubble over into a region-wide conflagration? So many questions, so few 8 balls.
Question: Will we see an end to the Hollywood writers strike?
Magic 8 Ball: It is certain. The time will come very soon when late-night talk show hosts will tire of paying their staff’s salaries, when out-of-shape writers will tire of walking the picket lines, and when network executives will shiver at the thought of another sweeps period full of reruns and reality shows. Come on people, let’s get “The Office” back on the air.
Question: Will Boston sports teams win all four major sporting championships?
Magic 8 Ball: Signs point to yes. 2008 could possibly see something that’s never happened before: all four major sports champions coming from one city. The Patriots seem well on their way to winning the Superbowl in February, and the Red Sox have retained most of their staff from last year’s championship team. The Celtics have the best record in the NBA right now and are likely to win the East easily; whether they can outlast the fast-breaking teams from the Western Conference remains to be seen. Even the Bruins are near the top of the ranks in the NHL and have an outside chance at winning their first Stanley Cup since 1970.
Question: Will Apple release the iPhone 2.0 in 2008?
Magic 8 Ball: You may rely on it. Apple is likely to release the next-generation iPhone well ahead of the 2008 holiday season. It will most likely do ten times as much stuff as the current iPhone and it will be able to keep your coffee warm. Hold off 2 months on buying it though, as there will likely be a $200 price cut.
Question: Will 2008 finally see the release of “Chinese Democracy”?
Magic 8 Ball: Don’t count on it. Axl Rose’s 15-years-in-the-making follow-up album to “Use Your Illusion” has been given at least a dozen different release dates during the last 5 years. At this point, the odds are 50-50 that China will actually be a democracy before this album is released.
Question: Speaking of China, will the 2008 Olympic games in Beijing see a record number of acute asthma attacks in world-class athletes?
Magic 8 Ball: It is decidedly so. A side-effect of China’s rapid growth and industrialization is an atmosphere as thick as pea soup with dust and diesel. Hopefully the Chinese athletes’ performances won’t be hindered by the smoggy air, lest they lose and be visited by one of their government’s friendly roaming execution vans.
Question: When Jessica Alba gives birth in May, will I be given a court-ordered paternity test?
Magic 8 Ball: My sources say no. Well, a boy’s got to have dreams.