I predict more predictions!

3 Jan 2010

I was just about to write a lament over the dearth of new predictions – religious, apocalyptic, or otherwise woo-ey – fogging up crystal balls everywhere. In Death of Darwinism: Need new predictions, fast!, I had reviewed some forecasts that had either failed recently or still sat under a ticking clock. The "demise of Darwinist ideology" and similar prognostications – not as concrete as, say, "Rove and Rumsfeld will be caught in a naked love huddle in August", but still solid stuff with measurable expiration dates. 

But where were some crunchy new entrail-readings?

On the last eve of the outgoing year, Brandon Thorp at the James Randi site obligingly offered a great roundup of predictions made for 2010. Excellent! Alas, the tabloid oracles featured therein keep it purely at the level of barely-workable fluff. Visions of celebrity happenings, vague viewings of economic recovery, and right-no-matter-what weaseling. (Like "Psychic Nikki's" stunner that Barack Obama may be assassinated. So if he is, she's right – and if he isn't, she's right!)

Some of the celebrity woo is verifiable: Brangelina splitting up by the end of spring 2010? We can track that and call it true or false. But I don't have much interest in sniffing after tabloid celebrity silliness. I'd like some meatier soothsayings to pin down. Fortunately, the blogging machine that is PZ Myers comes to the rescue in the aptly titled We're doomed. Check it out:

Harold "Off My Meds Again" Camping says the apocalyptic 2012 nonsense is indeed nonsense – because the world will end on May 21, 2011. How do we know that? Well, the number 5 equals "atonement", 10 equals "completeness", and 17 equal "heaven" (er... so?)... and if you count the number of solar days in the exactly 1978 years from the day Jesus was crucified to April 1, 2011 (huh? Why 1978 years?), and add the extra 51 days to bring things to May 21, 2011 (why??), you get a number that equals (Atonement x Completeness x Heaven)2.

Which, if it is the actual heaven-approved formula for setting the date of Armageddon, is strong proof that God is more bug-eating insane than we thought. But anyway. This is prognosticatory gold: a Big Event with a solid date. Break out the popcorn and get ready for the fireworks!

For my own part, I predict that I'm going to whip up a proper format for tracking these wondrous peeks into the future. I also predict you'll be back soon to see it!

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