New Year’s Eve 2022 – Reflections

It’s expected that we look back at the end of the year and try to draw some conclusions about what happened during the Earth’s last revolution around the Sun.  And I guess I see the value in that.  Some of the observations may not be very profound but there is value in reflecting on the various events and how they have or have not impacted our lives.  And we can look at trends and extrapolate on how those things will play out over the next year and beyond.  So, let’s say there’s value.

Looking back on the year, what stands out is the depths of the Republicans’ defeat by the Democrats.  I would say that there is no comparable example of an incumbent party in such a disastrous economy surviving a mid-term with so little damage to their ranks.  We are in a different place.  Whether it’s the ballot harvesting or a new majority of Americans out there, is hard for me to say.  Maybe it’s both.  But the importance of this new reality is impossible to overstate.

At the same time, I think we’ve reached the end of the awakening of the American population as to how their country is actually run.  Nobody believes in the myths of election fairness or unbiased behavior by the bureaucrats who really run this country.  Everyone has seen how the FBI and the courts treat Democrats and Republicans differently.  And this is the positive flip-side of the Democrats’ victory.  Everyone on the Right knows we’re being cheated and there will be no reconciliation.  The best the Left can expect is sullen resignation.  And if the opportunity ever arises, they can expect pay back.

On the economic front Biden’s war on hydrocarbons is having the expected results.  Almost every facet of the economy is suffering from very significant cost increases.  Food, energy, transportation and anything that has to be manufactured and shipped is more expensive.  Inflation is running between 10% and 20% depending on how you compute it.

The higher fuel costs are permanent.  And the current inflation is predicted to throw the economy into recession in 2023.  The layoffs that have already begun will reduce the inflation to some extent.  People will have to tighten their belts and save money where they can.  Those who lose their jobs are in for a really bad time.

Another trend that looks to be continuing is the migration from blue states like California and New York to red states like Texas and Florida.  Some is just economic reality because of the realities of blue state life; high taxes and bad business policy.  But some of it is people escaping the craziness.  And you can’t blame them.  The Blue cities have descended into chaos and the woke laws in these blue states cancel the freedoms we’re supposed to have under the Constitution.

As far as the Ukraine War, it’s very hard to say how all of that will end.  If the Russians have the wherewithal to crush the Ukraine, and I think they do, we’re going to be looking at a new international order.  If the Russians form a durable bloc with the Chinese the United States and Europe will be in a different environment.  Having abandoned industrial capacity in the United States and transferred it to China and more generally Asia, we are liable to lose the financial hegemony that we have enjoyed since the end of World War II.  Even the primacy of the US dollar is not assured.  And the ramifications of America’s descent from a global hegemon to just another competitor state will have very serious consequences for all of us.  We’ve been able to underwrite a defense budget, the size of which almost staggers the imagination.  When that is no longer possible, areas of our economy will contract radically and that will have a knock-on effect for the rest of the economy.  The United States is about to experience what every superpower from Spain to Britain experienced when it was knocked from the top perch of the global hierarchy.

And based on what happened in Afghanistan the people we have in charge of war and foreign policy are not very skilled at what they do.  There is a very real chance that they may botch a crisis.  They may even decide to interfere in the Ukraine war to such an extent that they panic or anger the Russians into a full nuclear exchange.  It’s hard to imagine that happening, but honestly, many people feel we are in a much worse place than we were back at the height of the Cold War.  And if that happens, we can stop thinking about extrapolations.  No one should pretend that they have any idea what the survivors of an all-out nuclear war will face or how things will evolve for humanity from that point.  All that is certain is that life will be infinitely worse than it is now.

But let’s assume for now that we avoid nuclear annihilation in the coming year.  It looks like we have some bad times coming.  The takeaway for me is to avoid incurring debt and build up any capability to earn money through enterprise.  Socially it makes sense to continue to reach out to friends, family and like-minded people to network and help each other any way we can.  And make a point of avoiding any entanglements with the Left at all costs.

So, there’s my review and extrapolation for 2022.  Happy New Year to all those out there.  Be happy and be safe.

We’ve Got a Ways to Go

New Year’s is the time to prognosticate.  Everyone and his brother know the future.  It’s the favorite pastime of pundits.  Well, relax.  I have no clue what to expect in 2023.  All I know is that the bad guys won and the good guys are out of power in Washington.  In a few places like Florida, state government is in the hands of normal people.  That’s about all I know.

But what I tell myself is that we can expect more of the same and worse for the foreseeable future.  Biden and his handlers have been emboldened by the mid-terms and they will continue to loot the country by executive order and through the Congressional appropriations grift that both parties have perfected since the Obama administration abolished the budget process.

The famous statement that there is a lot of ruin in a nation is being demonstrated on a titanic scale with all the multi-trillion-dollar boondoggles being rammed through Congress right up to the last day of this Congress.  The pain that is being felt by the working and middle classes will continue and intensify as the policies this regime favors continue to distort the energy markets and discourage the generation of jobs in manufacturing.  The wreckage of the cities by runaway criminality will continue and accelerate as the police forces in these cities evaporate.  These are not predictions.  These are the conditions already in place playing out in real time.

So let me extrapolate what’s going on and describe what that is.  The Left will continue with their program of de-industrializing the United States, eliminating affordable energy sources and importing poor people to destroy the opportunities of the native population to make a decent living.  And this will go on for a good long time before it completely destabilizes the socio-economic foundations of this country.

Now it may be that some local leaders decide to pre-empt this intentional destruction of the United States.  And they may even succeed in saving areas of the country from this program.  And I’ve speculated in the past on how a state policy of nullification of unconstitutional federal laws that threaten the welfare of a state’s citizens might be a way to achieve this.  But that’s strictly speculation.  It implies that local leaders would be willing to risk their careers and maybe their lives by defying the United States government.  But speculation is all that is.  No one has defied the feds since the Civil War.  It ranges into fantasy imagining how it would happen

So, what that leaves is a landscape where the Left steadily and without any effective opposition “fundamentally transforms” this country into a police state under the control of a partnership of the intelligence agencies of the federal government and cooperative woke corporations.

Saying this is extremely depressing for me but at the same time pretending anything else is even worse.  Continuing to wait for a rescue by a “silent majority” that doesn’t exist is even more painful.  My plan is to do my best to insulate myself and my family from the damage caused by this regime.  Strategies for doing that will be my focus going forward.  And of course, that will only ever be partially successful.  But I think that’s a realistic approach.

And I will keep my eyes open to see if a miracle occurs.

What would a miracle look like?  Two things come to mind.  One would be for the regime to succeed in their demolition plan too thoroughly and cause a critical failure of the economy.  Something on the order of the Great Depression but worse.  That might galvanize the population to renounce the Left and demand a return to sanity.

Another miracle would be one of those state governments actually succeeding in a nullification program.  If it happened it would have a tremendous effect on the other states and would change the whole power dynamic between the federal government and the states.  And it would be like an emancipation proclamation for the normal people.

But these are indeed miracles and we haven’t seen any miracles in a very long time.  So, most of my time will be devoted to looking for ways to cope with a government that hates me and wants me to disappear.  So, there is my look forward into 2023.  Not very inspiring but realistic, I think.

How Many Possible Paths-Forward Are There?

Science fiction writer L. Sprague de Camp has been quoted as having said “It does not pay a prophet to be too specific.”  He was right.  Seeing into the future is a fool’s errand.  But it is also what we have to do every day of our lives.  And the farther into the future you can see the more successful you will be.

Here at Orion’s Cold Fire, prognostication is a scientific endeavor utilizing all the latest technology and the most powerful data crunching systems to make our forecasts the envy of Nostradamus.  Sure.

We live on the knife’s edge.  Everything we’ve seen in the last few years shows us that the fate of the United States and indeed the world is balanced on a teetering point and the smallest breath of wind has the capacity to save us, at least temporarily, or tumble us into the abyss.  Sucks to be us.

Lately I have been trying to figure out what are the most likely directions the future may take.  Let me number them here.

  • The clearest and in fact, the most likely future is the complete victory of progressivism. Under this scenario, political control of the Unites States and also the rest of Western civilization shifts irreversibly to the Left.  All the tenets of progressivism, feminism, LGBTQ orthodoxy, anti-white quota legislation and socialist economics prevail.  Free speech, gun rights and freedom of religion are abolished.  An all-powerful, all pervasive state control settles over the lives of the citizenry.  Basically slavery.  I think this has a very good likelihood of occurring.  And the method will be a gradual tightening of all the policies that will lead to this endpoint.  It won’t be necessary to legislate any of these things abruptly.  Gradual is better.  How’s that for grim?
  • Another possibility I can think of is a branch off of the first scenario. The progressives win a big election.  They start initiating their agenda and someone does something.  Let’s call it a revolt.  Some kind of resistance that incorporates individuals taking action that becomes a rallying point for local or state government action.  This grows into a larger movement and this requires a response by the Federal government.  To make this a distinct case from scenario 1, we have to assume that it isn’t suppressed and leads to a split in the country.  At least two distinct geographic entities would occupy what is now the United States.  For this scenario let us pick the case that a successful path forward is arranged and both (or more) daughter states move forward along independent paths with more or less cooperation between them.
  • The third possibility and the least likely scenario is that the progressives lose. Somehow President Trump successfully manages to turn the American project back into the direction of freedom and sanity and reasonable men follow him in reversing the outrages of the last half century and putting us back on the path of freedom and healthy social relations.  This is my idea of the happy ending.
  • The fourth scenario is a full-scale civil war of the type seen in Yugoslavia. If this occurs, I assume the likeliest outcome is a divided country with an eventual armistice and population shifts to allow people to choose between two very polarized and hostile camps.  This would be an extreme version of Option 2.
  • In option 5 our enemies around the world see our weakness and division and nuke us into oblivion. This is also a slightly less likely scenario but far from improbable.

I’m sure there are several other cases that I’ve neglected.  If you have your own idea for a different version feel free to leave it in the attached poll or comments.


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My Labor Day Weekend Prognostications

Several months back President Trump stated that Mueller’s investigation must end before September in order to avoid interfering with the midterms.  Well, there has been a little bit of back and forth about September 7th versus September 1st, but for all intents and purposes here we are.  There are all kinds of rumbling in the media.  The most tempting headlines come from politico and the New York Times so I skipped looking at those.  Instead I’ll use my own marvelous logic to analyze the situation.

Tomorrow is September 1st and it’s a Saturday.  Saturday is typically the perfect day to do something that you don’t want maximally covered in the news.  What better day to fire Mueller!  Do I think this will happen?  I give it a 20% likelihood.

What I do hear, is that Giuliani is compiling a report on the deficiencies of the Mueller investigation.  He is going to highlight the partisan decisions in the choice of targets.  This will allow him to characterize the investigation as biased and therefore illegitimate.  And this I assume will be the basis for pulling the plug on Mueller.  I figure it’ll take at least a few weeks to unfold this little passion play.  But I don’t imagine once it gets started that it’ll have to be much beyond September 15th before some definitive action will occur.  My take on this is that it’s a 50%  likelihood.  It’s as likely as not to happen within the next two weeks.

And finally, what is the likelihood that nothing will happen until after the election.  Well, previously I would have said very likely.  But I think things seem to be shifting.  That is reflected in a 30% likelihood.  I think Mueller has done a lot of damage and seems to be intent on poisoning the mid-terms.  President Trump recently said that Jeff Sessions will remain until after the mid-terms.  I no longer think that’s true.  I think it’s as likely as not that he’ll fire Sessions and begin a counter-attack against Mueller and company before the mid-terms.

Now what would that look like?  I assume that firing Mueller, Sessions and Rosenstein will be just the tip of the iceberg.  He must appoint a prosecutor to start actions against all the co-conspirators.  He must begin proceedings to appoint replacements in the Justice Department and FBI.  He must provide public information to the US citizenship and he must do all this without panicking the cowardly sheep in the Congress.

So, all of that’s fine.  Good stuff.  But look at the risk associated.  The screeching from the media could be enough to throw the mid-terms to the Dems, even the Senate.  So this is an enormous risk.  Then why do I think it’s more likely than not that he will move before the midterms?  Because Mueller is going to come out with a late October, maybe even early November surprise to absolutely sway the election.  And I think Trump is a risk taker.  I think he will roll the dice to prevent Mueller from calling the shots.

We definitely live in interesting times.  If you have an opinion, leave it in the comments.