New Years Predictions for 2003

FTLComm - Tisdale - Wednesday January 1, 2003




new century


The other day I received an e-mail message from an American who had stumbled across the 2002 predictions and was profoundly disturbed with me. Like many Americans and Canadians alike he was a bit confused about geography and was not aware that this is a Canadian publication and that Tisdale is in the middle of Canada. When in an exchange of messages I pointed out that I was not only anti-Bush I was decidedly anti-American, given the present configuration of Canada and United States relations. The man did not grasp the concept that I was not a democrat.

This process of creating a set of predictions for the new year has been a part of this web site since its beginning and you can go back and see how I have had years were I was close, where I missed by a mile and this past year I wish I had not been so close to the mark.
Before we get into 2003 lets review how last years predictions turned out:
World financial picture:
I predicted a serious economic problem and as expected the stock market lost about one third its value with the US economy shuffling toward disaster and the poor countries of the world bashed horribly.
Canadian Politics:
Ontario's election of a new leader really did matter and the "common sense" policies are being quietly smothered The Canadian Alliance leadership race turned into a leadership for the Alberta Separatist party. Just as predicted the real political fight of the year was within the Liberal party. Where I got it wrong was the unexpected nastiness and undermining of the Canadian political process by Paul Martin who has turned out to be just like his dad.
Oil and Energy:
Close on this issue but missed the mark with Alberta actually enjoying a break even situation because the rise in oil prices provided them with more revenue but their tax cutting left the people of the province short on services as the premier continues to blame all of his government's mistakes on the federal government. My predictions about fuel economical cars is bang on but I was short sighted when it came to accessing the extent of the corruption that cause the California energy shortage of the summer before.
Unfortunately my predictions about agriculture were accurate.
Credibility gap:
My predictions about US foreign policy pretty much covered the year's events
Pendulum swing:
This prediction about China and the far East was and is correct but the awareness of this situation has yet to be established by North American media.
Black Flag:
Got this picture right, India and Pakistan did not square off and drag the world into a nuclear winter but despite their limited hostilities World War III is already in progress simply because of the global scale of the implications of Saudi Arabia's continued support of international terrorism.
What I missed:
I don't feel all that bad about the omissions in the predictions for 2002 but they should be noted.
    • West Nile Fever appears to be far more extensive than anyone even last summer suspected.
    • The Kyoto Protocol was something that we missed and was a major news story of the year in Canada.
    • The continued support of the conventional theories about economics and government finance should have been address.
    • The impressive backing Canadians give publicly funded medicare was one of the clearest opinions expressed by Canadians this year and we didn't mention it in our predictions.
The events of 2003:
It is the convention for we who engage in speculation about the future to tend toward the gloom and doom. Not just because it gets more attention from readers but because the more you think about things the less optimistic one becomes.

As a general and wide span consideration I am for the first year in many fairly positive about this coming year. I would like to be able to point to conditions and situations that are improving but most of the current issues are unlikely to improve in 2003 but on a personal and neighbourly level 2003 looks good to me.
With the prospect of $10 Canola and $4.50 wheat rural Saskatchewan depends completely on the whims of the Pacific Ocean and what it sends us. The climate people are predicting a mild winter, low moisture, dry cold spring and a hot dry summer. Based on the past few years that seems most likely. There are more bare fields this year than in the past decade and even a modest amount of snow, two more snowfalls like the one this week and there will be an actual spring run off and enough water in the fields to start a crop in the spring.

Most people feel that the crop left out there is at least 85% write off. So much depends on spring temperatures. If it is as little as 15% warmer than last spring and there is a total of thirty inches of snow fall an average crop is possible. I predict that for the Northern grainbelt 2003 will be an average crop year and average will be outstanding for most producers.

For the Southern grain belt the main factor will be excessive heat and those who plant early should get a short crop only slightly below average but actually below this year's production. High temperatures and high winds will be the curse of the Southwest once more.

Saskatchewan should experience a below average number of forest fires in the spring with a high incidence of fires mid summer due to the nasty storms of 2003.

2003 is according to my predictions the summer of the storms. High winds and electrical storms that will include more hale in the South East of the province than most years.
Lorne Calvert will have to face the Saskatchewan electorate this year but not in the spring. Though most signs point to a spring election my bet is that the man loves to campaign in the summer and with the sad loss of the 2002 crop it would be a good idea to have the prospects of a 2003 crop to cheer up the rural voters. Romanow did not care about winning the vote in rural Saskatchewan and let the Saskatchewan Party have it. Calvert thinks quite differently about the rural communities and has some worries in the cities.

So that leaves us with late June or just before harvest in mid August. I am going with mid August.

The Saskatchewan Party has some outstanding people but could use a little help in the leadership department. Mr. Hermanson can hold the seats he has if he makes use of the folks in the legislature right now, but if he makes it a one man show, he will lose a few seats.

Saskatchewan voters who showed interest in the Liberal party last time around will smile and shake their hands and their votes will mostly go to the NDP. NDP wins the election comfortably.

Though Mr. Hermanson will not step down after his defeat polls will show that Yogi looks good.

One of the surprises of the election will be the return to the legislature by Dwain Lingenfelter.
Federal Politics
If Paul Martin doesn't soon smarten up Canada will be truly a fractured and confused place. Continued sniping at the Prime Minister and curious scandals generated by Martin and his followers will make the present government totally unable to even accomplish the simplest tasks. However, Sir Ralph the Good, Ralph Goodale has the potential to make a difference, he can and will provide a focus for the government to get something done while Martin and the other candidates launch their campaigns.

I am disappointed in the destruction of Allan Rock and completely puzzled by the moves of Brian Tobin. Something is cooking and it is out of reach, perhaps for several years, to find out just what really has already happened. Manley is a stooge and the Prime Minister will have less than enough influence in Ottawa by May to play a part in establishing his successor. From the perspective of today, the best candidate to be able to handle Martin is the retiring Prime Minister.

Paul Martin, who brought us the worst things in the Chretien era could win next fall and become Prime Minister in February 2004. He is the man who brought us the scandals that battered the Chretien government and he is the guy who betrayed both his country and his leader, so the voters of Canada, even those in Ontario and Quebec, will not share the view of the owner of a Great Lakes shipping company for he is unelectable in a general election.

The NDP is over, it has failed in its leadership contest to discover itself and will remain limp and useless no matter who is elected, but since the membership vote and most members are from Saskatchewan Lorne Nystrom will assume the leadership of a dead party that does not know it has already passed into history.

The Alberta Party, called the Canadian Alliance, lead by Alberta separatist Stephen Harper is basically on life support. No money, no future and no Canadian values, they are the Republican Party North.

The Progressive Conservatives need a brilliant dedicated and pro-Canadian leader like David Orchard but the membership of the party is so heavily maritime based, they are without the sensibility of Joe Clark, like life guards at an empty pool.
God Bless America
It took a lot to get rid of the Richard Nixon and we need to think this through. Nixon was an immoral man but he was a smart guy and made good use of the smart guys around him. It was his cleverness and their cleverness that eventually made it impossible for him to remain in power. That lesson has not been lost on the Republican Party and it is unlikely they would play the same bad hand more than once.

So this means that given George W. Bush is a dumb guy with smart people the odds are that he will survive 2003 easily. Most sane people quit listening to him about ten months ago but he will keep talking and saying nothing.

ENRON, the protection of the Saudis who paid for and launched the attack on September 11 should be just some of the wounds on the US president but in 2003 though more and more people are openly opposing the government and its "let's go bomb somebody" attitude they are after all Americans, the home of Disneyland and Hollywood. Big talk, bad manners and only a small and powerless group actually smarter than their moron president.

The invasion of Iraq in February is just as the Afghan sham, a confusing and pointless use of money but not a waste of money. During Vietnam the money that poured into the military actually propped up the economy and produced good times for Americans.

With the primary policy engine being to gain control of the world's oil supply after the fighting ends in Baghdad the CIA will have nursed the violence in Venezuela to the point that the elected president will be killed in a coup or assassination. The death of this man is completely necessary to bring Canada and Mexico in line

The only moral high ground held by the United States will be on their television shows and movies as the country is and will continue to be a place of utter and total fiction.
Israel and the Middle East
This region of the world has a broken back, paralysis is setting in and there is a drastic need for treatment to prevent permanent damage. What is being done for this gravely ill patient? Surgeons Sharon and Arafat are bleeding the patient, attaching leaches to its arms and disfiguring it sometimes with torture.

Saudi Arabia is the cause of the region and the world's agony. Ruled by filthy rich princes and fanatical religious zealots who teach children to kill, kill, kill. Money from Saudi Arabia funds the world's terrorism, trains and arms its soldiers and is protected by the United States of America.

This time next year things will be the same.
World War Three
It actually began long before September 11, 2001 though historians will eventually declare that they date on which the war began. It is a global conflict only yesterday tons of ammonium nitrate were found in two sites in Indonesia while fighting goes on in the Philippines

From Beirut to Lucknow, all of East Africa, part of West Africa and perhaps a city near you. The war is on and driving tanks around the Iraqi desert makes good TV shots but will only allow the fingers of war to spread.

ID papers, travel papers, check points, security police, secret police, home security, all are part of and symptoms of a global war.

The secret is simple and Canadians are in 2003 going to begin to assert a cure. Defend the Charter of Rights, recognise what it means to be a part of a free and open society and do the right thing.

This new year is the time that we will pull out the essentials of what we are and that will be good enough, for now.
Real Stuff
  1. Microsoft is redirecting its company to widen its base and include more hardware and reduce its reliance upon software sales

  2. Gold is about to show a remarkable rise in value as the US dollar continues to decline taking with it the Canadian dollar which will pick up a penny or two through the year but in actual value will decline against other world currency. The Canadian economy is now to closely aligned with the US economy to hold it self up even though the Canadian economy is expected to grow in 2003 and the trade margin keeps the country well in the black.

  3. Tisdale's ethanol plant will be announced mid winter with construction planned to begin in the spring of 2004.

  4. Metal values, now seriously depressed will begin to rise modestly in March about the same time as Canada announces a series of large defense contracts and Canadian arms manufacturers will enjoy 2003 as their export markets jump.

  5. Remember pump prices lag behind production prices by more than eight months. Buy a bicycle as record prices will be set in Canada in June only to go even higher in August.

  6. Though the federal government's budget in the spring will show money on the way to medical care and defense it will be a deficit budget and inflation is ticking once more as 2003 sees Canadian interest rates rise about 3%. Provincial governments all across the country will put more money into health care, about 12% more and the public will not be upset at the move by all ten provinces to move into the red.

  7. By the end of 2003 when someone takes out a camera, it will be a digital camera and the guy with the film will be the odd man out.

  8. Tisdale's "AAA" Trojans will make it to the "Air Canada Cup" for the second year in a row.

  9. In Canada and the United States 2003 will see more insect repellent sold than ever before as West Nile Marches onward.

  10. As mentioned earlier 2003 will be the year of storms and this will be particularly true of the number of hurricanes thumping the US South Eastern states.

  11. A lot of talk about various affects of the Kyoto Protocol but few real developments. The federal government will begin a series of studies on high speed rail transportation and there will be a lot of talk about returning Air Canada to being a crown corporation.
Next year on New Year's Eve you have a better than 60% chance of looking back on 2003 and nodding satisfactorily, and mutter a Canadianism, "not bad!"

To each of you I wish you a very Happy New Year. It is up to you to make the best of what ever comes your way.

Timothy W. Shire



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Editor : Timothy W. Shire
Faster Than Light Communication
Box 1776, Tisdale, Saskatchewan, Canada, S0E 1T0
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