Wednesday, 31 December 2014

My Predictions for 2014 - How did I do?

It is that time of year once again to dust of my crystal ball and try and work out that is going to happen over the next twelve months.

1. An Olympic medalist will make a statement/protest about LGBT rights live on the Olympic Broadcaster. This will be the reason why we were right to let the athletes attend the Games at least one of them will make a protest and it will be the LGBT communities 1968 Black Power moment.

No medalist did make a statement or protest but Dutch slopestyle snow boarder Cheryl Maas did raise her gloves with images of a rainbow and unicorn to the camera after her qualification runs.
Earlier this month pairs figure skating silver medalist Canada's Eric Radford came out as gay, although other medaling and champion male figure skaters have come out as gay none have like Eric done it during the height of their career. But this all means 0 points

2. After the 400 bomb alerts, some of them viable, in Northern Ireland in 2013 one of the ones in 2014 will lead to a fatality.

There were no fatal bomb attacks in Northern Ireland this year, thankfully I score 0 points.
3. Mark Cavendish will win stages in three of the British Isles capitals this year. 

Not a great year for the Manx Missile in Grand Tours this year. He wasn't selected by Omega Pharma-Quickstep for the Giro start in Belfast, which ruled out wins there and in Dublin. Then before the Tour de France even arrived in London he had crashed out in the sprint for the win on Stage 1 into Harrogate. So 0 points

4. There will be a coup against Kim Jong-un.

Unless we are counting the film The Interview it would appear that if anything Kim Jong-un created a coup against Hollywood. 0 points

5. Olympians Katherine Grainger and Louis Smith will announce their retirements. 

In March Louis was first to answer that question. He actually returned to competitive gymnastics and appeared in Glasgow at the Commonwealth Games and is ready to step up in Parallel Bars if required and maybe even Rings if push comes to shove ahead of trying to make the team for Rio.
It took Grainger slightly longer to come to her decision but on 23rd September the deadline GB rowing had set her if she wanted to be considered for selection for Rio, she reported for training for the first time since the Olympics. While it is good to see them both now back training with the GB squads it means 0 points on this prediction.

6. Britain will win three or more medals in the Winter Olympics. 

Well with Gold for Lizzy Yarnold in the women's skeleton, Silver for the men's curling team, bronze for the women's curling team and Jenny Jones in Snowboarder Slopestyle that makes 4 and 1 point

7. A DUP elected representative will actually speak/vote positively about an LGBT issue. 

Couldn't be further wrong on this what the year actually brought is the least private private members bill with the support of the First Minister and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Investment at the launch looking to append a conscience clause only into the sexual orientation regulations of the Equality Act. Am tempted to award myself negative points for being so wrong on this. As resounding 0 points

8. Sammy Wilson will spend thousands of tax-payers money defending a court challenge by an same-sex couple who oppose their UK marriage being down graded to a civil partnership. 

This has not happened yet, but it is rumoured to be in progress, we wait and see what Sammy's successor Simon Hamilton does. 0 points for now and we shall see what Simon Hamiliton, Sammy's replacement does.

9.With Haass talks failing to reach an agreement on flags Northern Ireland descends into further acts of civil disobedience.

Well Twadell protests are still going on but the civil disobedience didn't really maintain its intensity. But we have talks again this Christmas which failed to settle parades and flags once more. 0 points

10. England lose their first two group games in the World Cup in Brazil and are out before they face Costa Rica.

I was right just didn't expect it to be Costa Rica who were already guaranteed to be through before the last set of games. But anyhow it was 1 point

11. Scotland vote to stay in the UK. My prediction of the result 38% Yes, 62% No to the question that is put. Turnout will be under 50%.

OK they did vote to stay. My prediction of the result ended up being 7% off and turnout was far greater than anything I had seen. But it is the headline that counts and for that 1 point

12. As a result of the above Alex Salmond faces a l eadership challenge from Nicola Sturgeon and John Mason in the Autumn and steps aside. 

Well he stepped down before there was a challenge, and Nicola was uncontested for the leadership. I think I'll only claim ½ point

13. David Cameron is told by the EU that he cannot keep restricting free access to Romanians and Bulgarians, so he attempts to call an immediate referendum on EU membership. 

Well yeah David has been saying this about all EU immigrants. But they have not yet sprung the referendum on us. 0 points

14. As Parliament rises for the summer after months of failing to get his actual agenda through Parliament David Cameron announces he will resign after his party elect a successor. Immediately Zac Goldsmith resigns his seat and Boris Johnson stands for Richmond Park. But in the ensuing by election Lib Dem Robin Meltzer defeats Boris and his leadership aspirations are over.

Boris is deciding to avoid Robin Meltzer, but he is seeking to return to Westminster in May so his leadership challenge is kind of live. I'm taking ½ point here too.

So in total I appear to have scored a less than impressive 4 points but then I did take some stabs in the dark.

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