Archive for January, 2009

My 2 cents on VOA & along Kimathi Street

1.  Voice of America’s Jackson Mvunganyi had me on his Upfront Africa radio show recently (click here for a brief; and here to listen to the latest show).

2.  The Daily Nation published my thoughts following Obama’s inauguration.

January 27, 2009 at 4:36 am 2 comments

Bless this our land and nation

By NJONJO MUE 
 

                             O Lord, do not your eyes look for truth?
                             You struck them, but they felt no pain;
                             You crushed them, but they refused correction.
                             They made their faces harder than stone
                             and refused to repent.
                                                              Jeremiah 5:3

This week, the world celebrated as Barack Obama was sworn in as the 44th President of the United States, and Kenya basked in the reflected glory of ‘one of our own’ taking the charge of the ‘most powerful nation on earth.’ But our celebration, like so many other things in this beloved country, is a lie.
 
For in Kenya, we have loved lies more than truth. We have embraced the lie of individual prosperity and the lie of our tribal identities. And we have invented and believed in the lie of our greatness as a nation, while denying our state of terminal decay, or merely moaning endlessly about it without lifting a finger to address it.

Those of us in our late thirties and forties can recall when as children, we started seeing for ourselves the creeping signs of decay – occasional press stories of corruption, reports of the odd violent robbery. The attitude among adults at the time always seemed to be, “Oh well, we have our problems, but we are not as bad as Uganda, or Nigeria,” or “It’s all Moi’s fault, it’s all the Kalenjins’ fault…” The last refuge of a fading elite was to hack back to a golden era that had been golden only for themselves. “The old days were better,” they sighed with indignation. “When our people were the only ones in the civil service.”

It is like every blow that has been struck against this nation as a chance for us to recognize how far we have fallen and to prompt us to repent and return to God just hardened our resolve to ‘cope’ to ‘adjust’ to ‘make do’. Doesn’t it sound uncannily similar to Jeremiah’s lament above? Resilience is an admirable quality, but rebellion is an abomination. And the line between the two can be very thin indeed.

So you move to another suburb, or you send your children abroad when the system crumbles, or you pay up the bribe and continue doing whatever it takes. You refuse to see the kids on the street and roll up your window each time you approach the traffic lights. And they grow up and become menacing glue-sniffing teenagers. Still you ignore them and soon they are hungry and angry adults with no options left in life than to get together and organise the next car-jacking, the next bank robbery… then what do you do?

You see, if none of us takes care of Little Mutua, as he looks through the glass of your firmly shut car window, all of us will be forced to take care of Big Mutua, a few years down the line, by putting more bars on our every window, driving with our car doors firmly locked and imposing a curfew on ourselves in our city. But back to the present, and to you. You refuse to see the decay; you refuse to ask yourself what YOU can do to change the situation.
 
We were sent off to school full of hope and excited at the possibilities that lay ahead, but our expectations were soon crushed. Now we spend the rest of our lives making excuses why things cannot be done differently or change effected quickly. We love the lie that things are not so bad, or that things are bad and ‘someone’ is going to change them. We watch from a safe distance as people take risks and fail, and we shrug internally and think, ‘at least that wasn’t me’. We acknowledge the mess, but our reaction is to call up the university and join the Parallel Programme to enrol for another degree, and hope that by the time we are through someone will have fixed this mess so that we can get on with our lives.
We have exported our collective hopes to one Barack Hussein Obama, he of the K’Ogelo extraction, whom we have claimed as one of our own. Our leaders have fallen all over themselves to send congratulations to him as he assumes the reigns of the most powerful office on earth. They even gave us a public holiday when his people elected him their 44th President, to enable us to drink ourselves silly and numb the pain of the meaningless search for meaning that has become our daily existence, as we watch our fellow countrymen, women and children starve in the country and freeze in makeshift camps. All this while the watchers of the people’s purse refuse to pay taxes; and steal the people’s food and precious oil.

All this has got me thinking of our national anthem, that soulful prayer that we sing so frequently and mechanically exhorting God to visit our land. But do we really mean what we sing, or do we merely mock God with a prayer we have no expectation of seeing answered in our midst or any intention of working for its fulfillment in our time?

Justice be our shield and defender:

We have asked for justice to be our shield and our defender and done nothing to lift up this shield. The shield is supposed to prop itself up, somehow. We do not lift up the shield for ourselves in our prayer for the nation; we do not lift this shield up for the widow, the orphan, the IDP, the refugee, the religious minority, the kiosk owner whose livelihood is destroyed before our very eyes, the thousands of people being abused in prison, or the people who are exploited by our labour system.

So long as we can do what we want to or need to do, then these other people just have to suck up their misfortunes. We hear about different attacks on different people for different reasons, and we shrug our shoulders because that is just the way these people are.
 
We are convinced that it cannot be done; we are devoted to making absolutely no sacrifices that are grounded in the bigger picture of this land created by God whose blessings we are asking for in mock supplication.

We counsel our children not to ‘waste’ their lives as teachers in schools, because there is no money in teaching and the quality of education is so bad anyway. Of course once ‘someone’ fixes these things we’ll be fine, but until then, we’ll just send them to private schools, or try to get them jobs somewhere else, or whatever. We cope the best we can.

Dwelling in unity?

We want to dwell in unity, but do nothing to build that unity. We must honestly ask ourselves how are we building that unity – in big ways and in little ways? As families? As communities? As workers? There is little evidence of unity-building. Instead we tear one another down so that we can be better than the other person. In big things; in small things. We want this cake to be eaten and to be eaten now; and if at all possible, to be shared only among people who look like us and speak like us.

Peace, Liberty?

We desire peace and liberty, but have not made any individual sacrifices necessary to uphold this peace or to guard this liberty.

Just think about it. What are we doing? What do we desire above all else? Excellence or comfort? We have been unfaithful to God and to our country; we have raised up a generation and taught it to crave ‘Western things’ that are synonymous with comfort. We have given them nothing to safeguard, because we have made it clear by our lives that there is nothing we consider ourselves to be guardians of. Our creed has been, ‘live your life, do your best, and let someone else deal with the situation, whatever it is.’

Then the world starts crumbling around us; things that were unimaginable five or ten years ago become commonplace – gangs attacking and mutilating people in the city, car-jackings, murders, rape, mayhem, cheating in exams, no water, no electricity, no roads, thousands of road deaths, rising illiteracy, rising unemployment, post election violence – and we are shocked. SHOCKED?!

So we pick ourselves up, build higher walls around our houses, put glass on top of the concrete separating us from our neighbours or if you can afford it move into a gated compound with electric fencing, try to avoid being in the city after a certain time and adjust to a new way of life. Things are not so bad. Do your best, adjust. You woke up this morning, you went to work, you did your thing. It is bad in some ways, but it is not so bad yet. Pray for God to send someone to do something about this situation.

Plenty be found within our borders…

We want plenty within our borders, but have no regard for those lacking in our midst. We take the little available for the poor and export it to Sudan to sell at exorbitant prices while our people die of starvation and make do with wild berries for supper. We take money meant for reviving our tourism industry after the post election violence and make it disappear. We release billions of shillings worth of precious oil to thieves. All this while we use our judiciary to whitewash the scandals of the past. There is indeed plenty within these boarders; it’s just that you and I don’t get to see or touch any of it; we merely read about it in newspaper headlines.

So we hear about deaths and mayhem, and thank God it wasn’t us, and move on to the next thing. We watch the situation on TV from the comfort of our homes. And we hope someone can come and deal with this. We are being crushed under the weight of culpability in refusing to seek truth. But we harden ourselves a bit more and continue in our ways.

Yet even civilizations and empires do not fall all at once. These things begin one person at a time, in a fundamental and profound way. One person at a time, the spirit of this age is consuming the lives of men and women in this land. One person at a time, we are allowing our inheritance to be taken from us.

What are the dreams we have for this nation? What is our role in fulfilling these dreams? What can we do? In a very real way, recording these dreams, praying about them, preparing for them to come to pass is something we need to do individually and as a nation. These dreams are in every area of our lives – our families, our schools, our jobs, our courts, and our communities. Instead of seeking false comfort in the fact that ‘our own’ has become the President of the World, we should dream our own dreams and work to bring them to pass.

But first we need to seek God’s face, and be changed by Him, recognizing that He is going to change us in order to use us. If we are to be called peacemakers, then we have to be prepared to be making peace in the midst of war. Whatever it costs us, we must gain understanding from Him.

So prepare against all odds, pray against all odds, watch against all odds, and wait against all odds. But we had better not be watching and waiting for the deliverer who will fix everything for us. We are watching and waiting for the fulfillment of the purposes God has for this nation through us.

All begins and ends with me and you. God did not send an angel to build the Ark and then invite Noah into it. Noah acted on this call, and built against all odds, for the day when rain would come. And come it did. We cannot wait for another election, a new leader, a pack of ‘young turks’, a new group of reformers and leaders and politicians to fix us. WE ARE IT. Your children will grow up and their children after them in the country we are making for them today.

And although you are not the one who killed the thousands, confined the hundreds of thousands to refugee camps, stole the maize or the oil or the tourism money, you are living and participating in a society so divided, so hardened, and so filled with injustice that this was allowed to happen. So whether you like it or not, you are implicated in these actions. They are both an indictment and a call to repentance. But above all, they are a call to rise up and take our country back!

Amkeni ndugu zetu!

 

NJONJO MUE
22nd January 2009.

January 22, 2009 at 2:53 pm 3 comments

My Jesus, I love thee

Click here for a good piano / organ / bells rendition of it.

  1. My Jesus, I love Thee, I know Thou art mine;
    For Thee all the follies of sin I resign;
    My gracious Redeemer, my Savior art Thou;
    If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.
  2. I love Thee because Thou hast first loved me,
    And purchased my pardon on Calvary’s tree;
    I love Thee for wearing the thorns on Thy brow;
    If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.
  3. I’ll love Thee in life, I will love Thee in death,
    And praise Thee as long as Thou lendest me breath;
    And say when the death dew lies cold on my brow,
    If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.
  4. In mansions of glory and endless delight,
    I’ll ever adore Thee in heaven so bright;
    I’ll sing with the glittering crown on my brow,
    If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.

January 21, 2009 at 6:37 am 1 comment

Inauguration memo

Most of my friends are leaving DC in droves; a city of 400,000 residents and 60,000 civil servants is expected to host an estimated 5 million visitors and few want to be around for that, despite repeated assurances from the federal government regarding logistics and security.
Others are keeping it indoors, staying glued to their television sets for the big event.
I had it in mind to stay indoors too owing to a terrible cold I picked up mid this week, but friends and colleagues are determined to get me there by all means; the political types I have interacted with on the Hill are eager to ensure I witness the inauguration come what may.
The one thing am sure I will not be doing is to join the Kenyan ministers and members of parliament who are in town for an African bash; I have a low opinion of the Kenyan political elite at this time, and generally consider it wasteful in many of its actions and policy decisions. 
I am the contemplative type, and so it is likely the day will be spent assesing the importance of the event, its implications for America’s domestic and foreign policies, as well as Kenya and Africa’s place in an Obama White House.
I feel very uneasy, yet also excited to be associated with Kenya and Africa at this moment in time, thinking the road ahead of me and fellow Kenyans and Africans will be taxing and demanding on one hand but also praying for God to rule over our land and continent to make it different on the other.
I believe in limited government, traditional family values, the rule of law, low taxes, property rights and a strong national defence; this places me right of center on most policy concerns compared with Obama who is left of center, so it will interest me lots if he will attempt to govern from the centre to cater for such interests as I have. 
I expect him to challenge existing assumptions about America, characterize such challenges in essentially deep American values and to explore sound alternatives to existing problems in this country.
Importantly, I expect him to provide new leadership on America’s understanding of the triad informing its national security and foreign policy concerns in Africa and other parts of the world: defense, diplomacy and development.
I am concerned that liberal outfits and agenda in and out of America would benefit under his administration, though I hope the sanctity of human life, traditional marriage and ordered liberty will not take a beating from him in Africa or anywhere else.
It is safe to assume he will give greater priority to American interests, though I hope Nairobi’s saddening politics could change somewhat during his tenure, particularly our feeble attempts at legal and land reforms as well as ethnic relations. 
I arrived here four months after the disputed 2007 General Elections in Kenya, during which I had contested for the Cherangany parliamentary seat.
Arriving here in an election year was historic for me, despite the fact that I had been schooling here when George Bush was campaigning for his second term.
Going forward, I hope Kenyan and African youth can pick lessons from Obama’s campaigns and victory: the crucial place of ideas and a campaign platform, organizing, messaging, fund-raising and the courage to stand up for what they believe is right for their country and generations to come.
The manner in which he has managed his affairs during the transition period must also invite our interest and study, and I really hope seeds for a new future and hope can begin emerging in Kenyan hearts beyond January 20th.
As a young Kenyan politician, am convinced we have a historic and strategic chance not to get things wrong the next time we go to the ballot box; I really hope our next election can be the time when policy ideas and values get to determine who we elect for the local council, national assembly and the highest office in the land.
Hopefully, we could also witness the emergence of genuinely post-ethnic candidates at all electoral levels for whom love for people and country shall not be merely another public relations gimmick.

January 19, 2009 at 7:18 am 2 comments

The Second Coming

*Thanks to W.B Yeats
Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.
Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of “Spiritus Mundi”
Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again; but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

January 12, 2009 at 6:01 pm 2 comments

Theodore Aluoch: “Kenya and Zimbabwe in 2009 prophecy”

2009: THE YEAR OF BIRTH PAINS AND BIRTH PANGS
AND DELIVERY OF NEW BIRTHINGS
30TH DECEMBER 2008

Rev  3: 1- 6
And to the Angel of the church in sardis(kenyan church) write these things, says he who has the seven spirits of God and the seven stars, i know your works,that you have a name that you are alive but you are dead,
2.
Be watchful and strengthen the things that remain that are ready to die, for i have not found your works perfect before God
remember therefore how you have received and heard, hold fast and repent therefore if you will not watch i will come upon you as a thief and you will not know what  hour i will come upon you.
4 .
You have few names Here in sardis (Kenya)who have not defiled their garments and they shall walk with me in righteousness in white, for they are worthy,
The Lord showed me a bullet that will shatter hopes, the bullet of justice. It will shatter strength and authority. It will end reigns of tyranny and will stop pride, this bullet will shatter power and establish power. This bullet of blood flying to the head of tyranny with a single shot will end the quest of justice. The Lord now will avenge for you Kenya, his vengeance will come forth quickened by his wrath.
The Nation will mourn for many tears flow, military division will be exposed there will be incursions. There will be fights between the forces, so bad it will be that many will stay indoors for days, let those with spiritual ears incline to his voice, those with ears let them hear what the spirit says to the church. Store for yourselves food, store more food, buy as much as you can. Buy now in readiness for the crisis. You will have a food crisis again. The Lord God himself will secure the heart of the nation and establish his statues and truth.
There will be a new revolution and birthings of new churches and ministries that will preach balanced Gospel of the kingdom and the cross and the blood of Jesus. Apostate and reprobate false and self proclaimed ministers of darkness will be exposed and their altars will fall as the mighty wrath of God is revealed and his latter glory falls. Churches preaching wrong doctrines and glorifying men and using witchcraft power are being reminded of Ananias and Saphiras of the Bible.
Can the Lord look at Evil and wickedness and relent from judging this land without true, sincere and pure repentance, unadultarated and defiled pure contrite hearts returning to Jesus.
I will put an end to coalition agreements. Your constitution review will be done by the Lord, your selfish ambitions will draw out fights among you again, you will be divided more on your tribal lines and ethnicities. If you don’t abide by my constitution, my word, your establishments will be vain, your efforts will not count.
I will open the mouth of truth. When he speaks, you will know who won your elections. Whom did I approve to lead you?, I will vindicate my word, says the Lord. I will show you what happened at KICC during your election in 2007. It will no longer be hidden. You assassinate and kill truth and try to hide it, but there is nothing hidden from me. Before me everything is bare.
Surely in February and into March 2009, I will bring upon you great birth pains. But my people will be secure. I will protect my own but the wicked will perish everywhere.
Are my ears too dull to hear the cry of my oppressed people within your land? The hands of your leaders are full of blood, I have heard the cry of the innocent babies sacrificed to satan in your mids Kenya by your very own leaders, who have made pacts with the devil and freemasonry.
I will do a great exposure, I will embarrass your Kings and humble them from their pride and insincere hearts, your nation is quickly becoming a muslim state and my church will be no more, my real church will go underground with much persecution. They will now drag you out of churches and torture you even kill you but I will cause my light to shine even brighter. I will test Nairobi in February and March.Nairobi has become like sodom of old, Renounce now your detestable ways before my judgement commences on you. False prophets have sold to you a comfortable package of peace with a sloppy gospel while they say Peace! Peace! My destruction will sweep them too.
Your confessions are insincere.
Hatred is deeply rooted in your mids.
You worship with your lips, but your hearts curse me.
I will depart from you and release you to tormentors
Your injustice abhors me, your evil schemes disgust me, Do you want my justice Kenya?
Are you willing to fall onto the hands  of the Almighty God?
Would you come before him and answer his questions?
I brought you peace shortly but you worshiped men, what you don’t know is that they offered blood sacrifices, innocent blood and my wrath is stirred, my justice will be served this year. Then I will restore calm and bless and prosper this land of Kenya. Your leaders, MP’s, and Pastors, and Superstar Apostles must all pay tax, they are not better than Jesus who did. Who can know my thoughts less I reveal them to him by my spirit? I have warned you of your stubborn hearts darkened with greed and deceit, you are deceived, you have allowed aliens in your mids, they oppress your own people. They defile your daughters, the daughters of your land are defiled. They have corrupted themselves and soiled their hearts and garments. Your filth and pervasion will be your downfall – remember Sodom. Which pact has your Kings made with Persian Kings who persecute my people Israel, DONT partake into the Iranian judgement.
Will the true church raise their golden censers and stop my wrath. Who will stand in the gap and restrain my wrath by praying for humility or humiliation? Will they surrender their  unrightfully begotten titles and pride which I will confound as foolishness. There is a great sin in your mids Kenya. A great sin in your mids that unless removed will cause you to be bound and about this mountain of chaos for forty more years. Choose now who you will serve. God Jehovah or baal.

2009 ZIMBABWE
Mugabe will fall. His reign will end and healing will begin in Zimbabwe. The Lord God has spoken. he has heard the cry of his people in Zimbabwe and he has put an end to Mugabe and he is going to be snared and destroyed by his own ego. Zimbabwe will again worship Jehovah and thank him for his justice.
IN CHRIST
 BOND SLAVE SERVANT
 PROPHET THEODORE ALUOCH
email: theodorenmichele@yahoo.com
POINTS FOR PRAYER
1.Prayer for Sudan and Somalia so that peace can come back to this nations and that their citizens who have taken refuge in our country can go back to their nations.
Currently, there has been an influx of aliens into Kenya, and they rent houses for a higher rate than most Kenyans. Some pay 10 years in advance and bring their relatives here. This has pushed house rents higher that ordinary Kenyans cannot afford living in nairobi ,prompting an Urban to Rural migration. What’s the government doing about this? Their women and children buy Identity card from corrupt government officials. Then they convert kenyans into Pagan religions.like Islam ,Parts of Nairobi bought and overtaken by foreigners include Gikomba, and Eastleigh area. what will the government do to protect Kenyans in their own country from these foreign invaders. Westlands is another part of town being flooded by pagan religions and foreigners with much money to buy Kenya and innocent Kenyans continue to be displaced as they suffer silently
2.Homosexuality, Lesbianism and Strip dancing is growing in this country, as influential persons involved in this habit buy influence from the echelons of our political establishment. The governments laid back attitude in fighting immorality is  becoming a problem in our society.
3..The government must not make deals with Iran lest we share in the Iranian wrath, this is a country that has PROMISED to ‘wipe Israel out of the world map’ as one of its rallying calls to the Islamist world. Ahmejinadad, the Iranian leader is a reincarnation of Hitler he is satan reincarnate of hitler. Remember that God has promised to bless those who bless Israel and curse those who curse her. kibaki must stop talking to the president of iran, kenya must not associate with iran and incur wrath from God.
Pray that our country has nothing to do with Libya and Iran for their main agenda in this country is not investment but to spread Islam and anti-semetic agenda. We must disassociate ourselves from their idols.
4.Pray that witch doctors will come forth and expose Pastors and MP’s who visit them to buy charms and powers to use in the church for manipulation purposes of members so as to profit from them.
Pray that the Lord uproots and removes the apostate church and its leaders and replace it with the genuine church – the true remnant church the hannah church
Pray that politicians fear God and respect his house and not to talk vain things in churches, manipulate pastors with money and go without repenting of their sins they are defiling the church.
Pray that the Lord brings together the fivefold ministry to work together for his glory.

January 7, 2009 at 10:04 am 42 comments

Kenya and the world in 2009 – a friend’s predictions

2009 predictions.
With a New Year dawning, let me put my reputation on the line and offer a few predictions for the New Year As follows:

Domestic politics:
1. 2009 will be, on balance, a pretty good year for President-Elect Barack Obama. Obama will move very cautiously on any policy agenda he has, and although he will not prove an extraordinarily dynamic executive, his charisma and the undying adulation of the media, as well as a more favorable, if not adoring, view of him held by the elites in the US and Europe will ensure that people are convinced that “hope” and “change” have truly come again. Expect internal tension between Obama’s economic and environmental advisors, and expect him to side with the former. The biggest weakness of the Obama administration will prove to be the ego of the participants. Though Obama himself will be raised above the fray, influential cabinet secretaries and aids will publicly snipe at each other in the press despite the best efforts of Whitehouse chief of staff Rahm Emanuel.
2. 2. The Democratic congress, by contrast, will not have a good year. Nancy Pelosi, an ultra-liberal and, even worse, an ineffective speaker, will try and fail to push much of her agenda (card check, the fairness doctrine or some equivalent tougher gun laws and the like). She will face a fractious caucus, as Democrats from red districts struggle to avoid taking votes which will cost them in the 2010 election, and an administration unwilling to back her on issues near and dear to her base.
3. . The Republican Party’s year will be mixed. On Capitol Hill, the party won’t prove particularly effective, as tensions continue to simmer between conservatives, who will oppose a pork-laden stimulus package and more government bail-outs, and moderates who will attempt to work with the Obama administration and undercut Democrats. The house and senate Republicans will have moments of glory however; allying with moderate Democrats to block card check and, when gas prices inevitably rise over the summer, another “windfall oil profits tax”. By and large, however, the Republicans in the house and senate will sit back and watch Pelosi utterly fail to control her caucus. In the states, things will look a good bit brighter for the GOP, as governors like Mark Sanford, Bobby Jindal and, yes, Sarah Palin help craft alternatives to the federal Democratic Party’s policies. The extremely cautious RNC will come close to reelecting Mike Duncan party chairman in January; when word leaks out, the grass-roots reaction will be so astonishingly vitriolic that they will back away from even thinking about it. In the end, the next party chairman will be African-American, as the party will be unable to resist the chance to provide a conservative alternative to Obama, even if only in a shadow sense. However, since I respect the intelligence, grasp of policy and organizational abilities of both Ken Blackwell and Michael Steele, I suspect that, whichever man ultimately wins the top job will do a very good job. Bob Mcdonnell will win the governor’s race in Virginia, and senate candidate Dick Zimmer will run for governor of New Jersey, and may just win in a squeaker.
4. Immigration politics will make resurgence as the economic slow-down prompts increasing hostility to illegal immigration. Obama will be unable to act due to the conflicting pulls from his base and public opinion. House Republicans will be divided, but most will rally around a Mike Pencesque policy of first securing the border then creating a system whereby the market can determine the flow of immigration in a regularized fashion. True immigration hawks will begin mulling the prospects of a third party which is socially conservative, economically nationalist and tough on immigration.

Economy: the recession will continue, and the government will entangle itself with an increasing number of industries. Members of the commentariat will continue speaking of the “end of capitalism” and “decline of America” despite any real lack of evidence, and continuing to ignore China’s underperforming of the US stock-market. Chinese growth in 2009 will be the slowest in decades, and this will correspond with increasing unrest for them at home (see below). The economic stimulus will blunt the worst edge of the recession but won’t end things in the end. Home prices will continue to fall; auto makers will continue to struggle, Ford maybe a bit less so than the others. Americans will take small comfort in the fact that they’re doing better than almost anyone else in the world. However, by the end of the year, things will start to look marginally better. The last quarter of 2009 will see either slight growth or a smaller shrinking than any of the previous three. Gas prices will again sky-rocket over the summer, but not as high as this summer.

Foreign affairs:
1. The Obama administration will make only token and/or cosmetic changes in US foreign policy, stroking the egos of European leadership, perhaps closing Guantanimo, but otherwise not doing much. Afghanistan will receive a huge inflow of men and material, and the Taliban will suffer setbacks, but will be able to regroup across the border in Pakistan. Obama will, like Bush before him, quietly pursue a more pro-India policy, and will, a little less quietly, grow increasingly frustrated and angry with Pakistan.

2. Iranian president Mahmud Ahmadinejad will continue to be a problematic figure for the US and in the region. Obama will meet with him once or twice without preconditions, will get nothing out of it and will become quickly disillusioned with the Islamic Republic’s posturing. The continued slump in gas prices will cause unrest in Iran, and will make Ahmadinejad and the mullahs increasingly desperate, but this will drive them closer to their erstwhile allies and fellow sufferers in Russia and Venezuela.

3. 3. Russia will prove to be a major headache for the new administration, as Russian bellicosity increases. Putin and Medvedev will assume Obama is a push-over like Carter and will be shocked to find out that he and his national security team have more starch in their spine than expected. Russia will make more saber-rattling noises, particularly in hopes of bolstering their position in Central Asia and keeping Ukraine away from Europe. Within Russia, nationalist violence will rise for yet another year while radical Eurasianist Alexandr Dugin and his coterie will continue to grow quietly more influential in the halls of government.

4. 4. David Cameron will lead Britain’s Tories back into government with a much smaller majority than they by rights ought to have. They will attempt to tackle Welfare Reform with modest success. Brown will be ousted as Labor Party leader in favor of someone probably worse.

5. 5. Stephen Harper will finally win a majority for the Conservative Party of Canada, though, again, a smaller one than by all rights he deserves to win. The left wing of the Liberal Party of Canada will grow increasingly disenchanted with new leader Michael Ignatief, and rumors will begin to swirl of a Bob Rae-led defection to the NDP. Should this occur, the LPC will essentially become a centrist party once again, which will either lead it eventually back to government or to disillusion. Once he has finally gained a majority, Harper will strip the public subsidy from the political parties, thereby crippling his rivals. The NDP will recover most quickly, hiring former Dean and Obama campaign veterans to build them a fund-raising network. This combined with their increased position in the House of Commons will make Canada’s socialist party de facto opposition.

6. 6. Nothing much of any importance will happen in the EU, accept that they will once again fail to meet their economic targets and the Euro will continue to be talked up falsely as an alternative to the dollar. Eurocrats in Brussels will concoct another desperate scheme to bring greater political union, which will fail. Far-right sentiment in several European countries will grow because of increasing immigration in hard economic times.

7. 7. 2009 will not be a good year for the PRC. The economic slow-down, increasing unrest, the fall of a couple of it’s client regimes and increased protectionist and anti-Chinese sentiment in the US will reinforce, to the leadership of the PRC, that they still catch cold when the US sneezes, and be damned what “decoupling” theorists and over-eager pundits like Fareed Zachariah have to say about it. Of course, since the politburo has a better grasp of reality than Fareed Zachariah anyway, this will not be news to them. China will quietly crack down at home while attempting to show an even friendlier face abroad. They may even covertly offer assistance to the administration regarding Iran and North Korea in exchange for increased good will and a veto on any protectionist economic measures coming out of Washington.

8. 8. India will have a mixed year. A comprehensive overhaul of its counter-terror doctrines and policies will, at the very least, be undertaken. Relations with the US will continue to warm, and India may even begin considering greater expansion into Africa. Like the rest of the world, its economy will grow more slowly, but Manmohan Singh, India’s shrewd Prime Minister, will limit the damage done by his left-wing coalition partners.

9. 9. Robert Mugabe will finally be deposed, no thanks to the clownish performance of the ANC. Jacob Zuma will be elected President of South Africa, but cracks within the ANC will widen. President Kibaki’s health will continue to decline, leaving Kenya increasingly in Odinga’s hands. Odinga will prove just as disappointing as Kibaki, though much of this will not hit this year. Continent wide, backlash among the populous against Chinese “neocolonialism” will continue to increase.

10. 10. (Complements of Dan Livingstone, my Korea expert). Kim Jung IL will be pronounced dead and a power struggle will ensue (this will also contribute to China’s problems, see above). China, South Korea and the US will work to stem the damage, but the already crisis-ridden nation will now face civil war in addition to its other problems. (My additions). Units of the PLAN will cross into North Korea to keep order, with the tacit support of the US and South Korea. A more moderate, Chinese-style Communist leader will be imposed on the country, and will attempt rebuilding along “market socialist” lines.

11. 11. Things in the Middle East will pretty much continue to suck. Iraq will see slow improvement, once again despite Nuri Al-Maliki. The Shiah parties will (very unfortunately) probably get reelected, but the Awakening political parties will win in Sunni areas, and a credible Iraqi nationalist opposition will start to emerge. Christians in Iraq will continue building their own militias to protect them from basically everyone. The Israelis will elect Benjamin Netanyahu, particularly if the current Israeli operations don’t go as well as expected. Egypt will again mull occupying Ghaza, and if they do end up doing it, will make what Israel did to the strip look like a picnic, but will naturally receive no press for it because the media doesn’t give two bits for what Arabs do to other Arabs unless the US can be blamed for it. Netanyahu will begin an overhaul of the Israeli military and attempt to liberalize the economy. The various governments in the region which are not Israel will continue to brutalize, rape, torture and kill their own people routinely with not so much as a whimper from the UN, EU, world press or more than a handful of NGOs, and will receive an almost total pass on their actions from the Christian left, which, like the Christian right, sees the entire region through the lens of Israel-Palestine.

Culture:
1. The New York Giants will finally face the Pittsburgh Steelers in one of the best super bowl games in the history of American football. Giants win, but only by a touchdown.
2. 2. Anywhere from six to ten pop starlets will do any or all of the following: get married, get divorced, get checked into drug and/or alcohol rehab, have a child, have someone else’s child, develop an eating disorder, develop a new line of dreadful fashion accessories, convert to an Eastern religion,
“find Jesus” then lose him again two months later at a party in Beverly Hills. Less than five pop starlets will do any or all of the following: become Republican, produce a hit single which is actually worth hearing, have a sincere religious experience, get married and have it last for more than ten minutes, “find Jesus” and not lose him six months later at a party in Beverly Hills, actually do charitable work which is in some way useful to society.
3. 3. The popular LOL cats phenomenon will be replaced by the even more bazaar text message chimpanzee, consisting of pictures of chimpanzees doing various things accompanied by brief messages in text message speak which say things like l8 4 mtg w/ silverback gorilla, or have a h/t d8 tonight w/ foxy spider monkey. It will only get weirder from there.
4. 4. Rom Moore will be unable to resist politicizing the last half-season of Battlestar Galactica, thereby ruining a promising series. The new Star Trek movie, however, will rock super hard.
5. 5. At least two shows which should not be canceled will be, and at least five shows which should be canceled will not be.
6. 6. Eric Flint and Tom Kratman will collaborate on a book, and the world’s head will explode from the political paradox and sheer unbridled awesomeness. John Ringo will finally get round to starting a new sci-fi series, while David Drake and David Weber come out with solid new entries in their existing ones.
7. 7. SNL will be unable to bring itself to actually effectively lampoon President Obama, thereby reducing its political satire from OK to suck.
8. 8. There will be at least three more movies about how bad/evil/dumb/incompetent/Hitleresque Bush was. All three will tank at the box-office, because quite frankly nobody cares anymore.

Personal (all of the following are somewhat unlikely but would be awesome).
1. I will take my New Year’s resolution seriously and drop at least twenty pounds. Friends will be shocked by the sheer amount of salad I’ll consume, the total of which will eclipse the total amount of salad I’ve eaten thus far in my life by a factor of at least a hundred.
2. I will have to make a difficult decision, as six prestigious universities offer me fully-funded PHD programs while President Obama asks to appoint me, who he refers to as “A person so smart that I need him on my team even though he didn’t vote for me this time and almost certainly won’t in four years,” as Assistant to the Deputy National Security advisor. I eventually decide to go with the government job.
3. After winning the “most eligible bachelor” designation from several leading popular magazines, I become deluged with eligible young women, to the point that I am forced to hire my friend back from Iraq with a pay increase to handle security on:

4. The luxurious Georgetown mansion (complete with car driver and full staff equipped with crisp British accents) I buy after:

5. I finally complete a bloody novel and get it published and:
6. Win the lottery and Who Wants to Be a Millionaire in quick succession. But:
7. Despite my fame, good fortune, more manly physique, incredibly cool job and totally awesome and stylish car, the best part of the year is still surrounding me with the friends and family who’ve been with me in good times and bad. I gather them all together, at some point during the year, at a cabin on a lake both of which I’ve bought with my winnings. We kick back a few drinks, swim in the crystal clear water and talk about the good times, past, present and future. All of them, astonishingly, get along with one another, and we spend an idyllic two week period there which is the height of the year for all of us.

Well, that’s it for 2009. All these predictions, of course, are subject to change, do not come with a warrantee and may not be returned for any defect discovered subsequent to purchase. Hope you enjoyed them.

January 7, 2009 at 9:37 am Leave a comment

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