Countdown to 2011

Predictions and wishes for the New Year

By - Dec 31st, 2010 04:00 am
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“Year’s end is neither an end or a beginning, but a going on, with all the wisdom that experience can instill in us.” — Journalist Hal Borland

It’s that time again, when we reflect upon the last 12 months and anxiously await with the next have in store. 2010 was an interesting year, and 2011 awaits with untold possibilities. To celebrate, TCD staff members and a few notable Milwaukeeans weigh in with their predictions, hopes and wishes for the new year.

Wishing you and yours a safe and happy holiday!

Eric Von
Morning show host, 1290 AM WMCS

I cheated. I opened my Christmas gift a little early this year… Thanksgiving, to be exact. It is the perfect man-gift: A wife.

No fumbling with wrapping paper, no instructions to decipher, no tiny bolts or screws. I didn’t have to assemble my gift, thank god! This could be the best Christmas gift I’ve ever received; better than the GI Joe and all his gear I got when I was 5; better than the bike I got when I was 9; better than the racing set at 12; better than the electric football game and the Rockem’ Sockem’ Robots and all the other gifts combined.

My gift didn’t come with a warranty, but a warning: HANDLE WITH CARE.

That’s easy. I love my gift, and I will handle with great care in the coming year, and every year to follow.

Jon Anne Willow
TCD Editor in Chief

I know a lot of people are excited about a robust holiday shopping season and a strong stock market recovery. And it’s okay, it’s been a truly frightening three years and a good attitude is key to shifting the momentum. But I worry that as 2011 wears on, the reality will set in that America can no longer spend its way out of recession. Pent-up demand is driving consumer sales at the moment, not a truly improved economy. In addition, we are about to enter an era where newly-elected majorities – both state and federal – have persuaded their constituents that budget deficits can be addressed almost exclusively with spending cuts. But this is simply mathematically impossible without fundamentally changing the role of government. So I predict that sometime in the next 12 months, the people of the United States will be asked to make some very real, and lasting, decisions about what kind of country they want to live in. I also predict that these same people will avoid the question to the greatest extent possible. Meet the new boss. Amen.

Jeff Wagner
Program host, News Radio 620, WTMJ

I’m extremely bullish on 2011. I think that at some point during the year, the Dow Jones Industrial Average will hit 13,000 and Wisconsin’s unemployment rate will drop below 7%. I predict that the movie True Grit will do very well at the Oscars and that “American Idol” will take a huge dive in the ratings. I also predict that this is the year that the Milwaukee Brewers make a return to the World Series and – on a personal note – that this will be the year that I finally break 80 on the golf course! Hope springs eternal. Happy New Year!”

Patti Wenzel
TCD Associate Editor

After coming out of my election coverage coma in November, I thought the 2011 spring election would be dull. But with Lee Holloway throwing his hat in the ring for County Executive and slinging mud at the other candidates within seconds of his announcement, I predict the upcoming Milwaukee County Executive race will be an all-out knife fight! Holloway will bloody everyone in the process, including himself, and lose the primary big time. I predict the race will come down to Rep. Jeff Stone and philanthropist Chris Abele.

But after predicting Russ Feingold would hold off Ron Johnson, I’m out of calling the final tally.

Mark Metcalf
Director of Collaborative Cinema at Milwaukee Film and host of TCD’s “Backstage” podcast

My predictions for 2011 are a lot drearier than my wishes. With the new faces in the federal and state government I believe recognition of the arts as a viable, if not leading, part of  culture and society will fade even further. Of course adversity often breeds creativity, and progress may be made just because it has to — or everything will look like Tron in the movies and The  Sound of Music in the theatre. I’m afraid my wishes are a pipe dream, and the pipe has been cold for a while.

Curt Yorkey
TCD Advertising Manager

1) 2011 will bring the shutting down of WikiLeaks, followed by the upstart of several new ‘stealth Internet leak sites causing more of an alarm than anything WikLleaks was known to expose.

2) There will be a huge backlash by consumers towards their cell phone companies and the grossly overpriced data plans being offered.

3) The Nook will begin to make larger strides in the market than anyone suspected, due to customer loyalty coming back into play for all things during 2011.

4) The Milwaukee Brewers will break attendance records as the Brew Crew makes its first NLCS since 1982, followed by losing Prince Fielder in free-agency to the American League. I’ll go out on a limb and predict Tampa Bay.

5) Tiger Woods will win his first Major since his 2009 ‘Thanksgiving Debacle’ coming at England’s Royal St. George’s.

6) 99.99% of area golfers will be unaware that for all of 2011, Blackwolf Run’s Meadow Valleys and River courses will be closed to prepare for the 2012 U.S. Women’s Open.

5 thoughts on “Countdown to 2011: Predictions and wishes for the New Year”

  1. judith ann moriarty says:

    whaaaat? no visual art predictions? Judith Ann will continue her win by riding her Schwinn while thinking about a genuine list of Avant-Garde artists.

  2. Seth says:

    Have a ball John. Actually sounds like a wonderful way to spend the New Years quite frankly! More people should spend it that way.

  3. Seth says:

    John,
    I would combat yet another of your attacking diatribes of those on the right. But they are getting old. And I truly believe that your vision of ‘greatness’ differs largely from my vision of ‘greatness’. Have a safe NYE.

    1. John Smart says:

      Thanks, Seth – I am having a “safe & sane” NYE with my two exchange students – we’re eating, not drinking!

  4. John Smart says:

    Interesting collection of prophecies and pipedreams, folks. While I am not as pessimistic as Jon Anne, I am not as pie-in-the-sky as Jeff either.
    Regarding Milwaukee politics, I am far from being well-informed, but Patti, I should think that the voters would be happy to have Jim Sullivan willing to take on the mess left by the recently elected governor. He’s a good guy…
    And I am thrilled with the candidacy of Marla Stephens to replace Justice “protecting the conservative judicial majority and acting as a common sense compliment [sic] to both the new administration and legislature” Prosser!
    So, although I am far from happy with the way the election turned out, and I anticipate some bad times ahead for our schools and human services, among other things, I am also ready for the challenge. This is a great state, and we can salvage its greatness, I know we can!

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