Around the middle of each January, I publish six forecasts for the year to come. Why the middle of the month and not the start? My experience is that a December or first-of-the-year forecast risks residual influence of the old — you are still at least partly immersed in the year coming to an end and less likely to be fully alert to important clues of what is about to unfold. And this year, the real start of something new is Inauguration Day, not New Year’s Day.
This is the ninth year of these forecasts. I base them on 15 common sense guidelines — I call them “rules” — that reflect how people have tended to behave over time. (Here are the first 14, from the Muddle-Along Rule to the Conspiracy Rule, and the 15th.)
For the better part of the last quarter-century, more than 40% of Americans have nurtured a love affair with Fox News. Fox is not the most-watched network — legacy players CBS, NBC, and ABC still attract larger audiences, and CNN occasionally wins prime time. Nor is it the only cable show serving the right — small broadcasters like Newsmax and OAN have stolen some market share. But Fox is still by far the biggest player in conservative media — and on all of cable — with a fervent, even fanatical viewership for whom it is the only trusted news source. And for the last seven weeks, Fox has shown its viewers a drumbeat of 774 reports casting doubt on President-elect Joe Biden’s election. According to a new poll, 78% of Republicans believe that Biden lost.
Trump Made My Worst-Case Predictions for 2020 Look Tame
The president’s savior complex was central to my annual list of geopolitical forecasts
Authorities are warning of a mass radicalization of conservatives and the far right, and after the January 6 attack on Congress, the threat it poses to public safety. Ahead of Biden’s inauguration, Twitter, Facebook, and a half-dozen other platforms have unplugged Trump and thousands of his acolytes, but no one has disconnected Fox. On the contrary, Fox has added an hour of opinion in…