Tuesday

November 21st, 2017

Insight

The Year in Preview

Greg Crosby

By Greg Crosby

Published Jan. 4, 2016

Oh yes, ladies and gentlemen, here we go again into another new year. Lots of stuff will happen over the next 12 months and I'm here to tell you not all of it will be stuff you will be happy with. As a person who wasn't all that thrilled with everything that happened in 2015, I can promise that 2016 will definitely hold its share of crapola. The only question is, how much of it will fall directly unto you personally. Yep, surprises await, so cross your fingers, close your eyes and make a wish. Happy New Year everyone!

Now for those of you readers who think I'm being way too pessimistic about the future, let me tell you that I speak from a lifetime of experience living in the real world, not the Land of Oz. Oh sure, some really good things might be in store for some of us in the coming year, I have no doubt. Maybe even great things. I hope so. But human history teaches us that every ice cream sundae we're served comes with a large glass of pond scum to wash it down. Skol, everybody!

See, the trick is to learn how to hold your nose, be brave, and drink down the putrid stuff while you wait for another ice cream sundae (which may or may not arrive at your table in time to kill the taste). But hey, that's life. That's what all the people say. You're riding high in April, shot down in May. Now I'm channeling Sinatra. Bear with me while my senior moment passes.

No one can foresee the future, not even me, so most of what will transpire in 2016 is a big fat question mark. There are certain things, though, that we know damn well will happen. We know that as sure as February follows January (it still does, doesn't it?) there will be a presidential election in November. We know that Hillary Clinton will be the Democratic nominee. We also know that Hillary Clinton will be elected president (unless there is a catastrophic terrorist attack in this country).

How do I know Clinton will be elected? Easy. Just as every liberal (and some not-so liberal) voter ran out to elect Obama in 2008 just to say "I voted for the first black US president," the same will happen with voters who want to be able to claim that they voted for the "first woman US president." Add to that, the fact that she will pander to all so-called "disenfranchised" groups, she will engage in class warfare, the war on women, and play the sexism card at every opportunity, she will promise to give away more free stuff than even Obama promised to give away, and throw in the fact that the media, academia, and the entire entertainment industry will be behind her and she's a shoe in.

Another thing you can count on in 2016 is the continuing decline in American culture and civility. I don't know how they'll do it, but believe me, our already vulgar, ugly, disrespectful culture will go even further down into the sewer than it is now. Pick any idiom you like; "the train has left the station," "you can't unring a bell," "the horse is out of the barn," "that ship has sailed," anyway you want to say it, once civility starts to unravel it's almost impossible to turn it around.

The young always look for ways of sticking it to the previous generation, that usually means acting up in ways that offer the ultimate shock value. So really, where does the next generation go from here? I mean when mom has purple hair, a tramp stamp and multiple body piercings; dad wears earrings, shaves his head, and uses his torso as a community bulletin board; and both of them spend their evenings bonging what's left of their brains out, how does junior top that?

I also guarantee that 2016 will see our national debt increase, our economy continue to stagnate, our public housing, food stamps, and other government programs grow, our health care systems sliding further into single payer socialized medicine like Canada, our standing in the world decrease even more, and Islamic terrorism gain ground. I know this because the Obama administration will still be in charge.

So drink the pond scum, my friends, and keep waiting for the ice cream sundaes. Who knows? Maybe for you 2016 will have an abundance of ice cream sundaes! Of course that only means that your cholesterol will go through the roof and you'll gain 50 pounds.

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JWR contributor Greg Crosby, former creative head for Walt Disney publications, has written thousands of comics, hundreds of children's books, dozens of essays, and a letter to his congressman. He's also a Southern California-based freelance writer.

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