The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Opinion

December 31, 2012

Some bold — and not so bold — predictions for 2013

ENID, Okla. — The year 2012 was painted into a corner. Three years before it arrived, the release of the disaster film of the same name prepped us for pending apocalyptic doom.

Now that we’ve survived, what can we expect for the year after? (Don’t worry, this editorial doesn’t involve reading tea leaves or interpreting quatrains from Nostradamus.)

Here’s an overview of some bold — and not so bold — predictions for 2013:

• The unmanned moon mission Chang’e 3, named after the Chinese moon goddess, is scheduled to launch this year.

• For the Chinese, 2013 also is the year of the snake, although it doesn’t start until Feb. 10. Astrology.com claims that is a great and positive sign:

“We’re likely to see significant developments in the area of science and technology this year. Research and development are apt to flourish. This is a Water year as well, the element most closely associated with education and research, making 2013 a very special year for scientists and scholars.”

• CNN contributor David Frum predicted ongoing drought will fuel a food crisis this year.

• Forbes contributor Mark Rogowsky offered the following prediction on oil: “Prices will fall below $100 by mid-year, but end the year around the century mark.” In contrast, the Washington Post’s Robert Samuelson expects oil to plummet to $60 to $80 a barrel.

• Yahoo! Finance predicts the end of $4 gas, thanks to refinery units along the Gulf of Mexico.

• The Washington Post’s Eugene Robinson anticipates Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez probably will die this year.

• Across the pond, Mark Mardell, North America editor for BBC News, expects the U.S. economy to rebound with manufacturing playing a pivotal role.

“This will be largely based on growing U.S. energy independence,” Mardell wrote. “Europe will slip further back, with crisis as the new normal.”

• As for real estate, the senior economist for Zillow Inc. paints a rosy picture, with continued appreciation of home values.

“It’s almost like we’re getting back to normal,” Svenja Gudell told Reuters. “Any positive seems extremely amazing, but really, we’re on our way to getting back to normal.”

Getting back to normal. That doesn’t sound like a bad idea, does it?

Happy new year!

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