First, let's look at last year's resolutions and see how I did:
Resolution: Get back into fightin' trim. I did a little backsliding on my weight, but I'm still nowhere near what I used to be. I'll be back at 190 pounds by the time we launch The Boat this spring.
Results: Not even close.
Launch The Boat before Memorial Day. This past year we didn't get it into the water until the third week of June. Of course, May 2005 was cold, wet, and generally a miserable month, weather-wise. Even if we'd launched it May it would have sat at the slip unused until the beginning of June.
Results: The boat was in well before Memorial Day!
Find a good used pickup truck. Hey, we need one for hauling trash to the dump and towing The Boat. Of course it's gotta be a 4X4 considering the kind of weather we get here in N'Hampsha. But not an SUV or one of those wannabe sorta pickups. It's got to be a workin' truck!
Results: Not yet.
Revive the Paugus Diner Poll©. Now that we'll be entering the 2006 political silly season, also known as mid-term elections, I'll have to pay closer attention to public opinion. Though my poll is in no way scientific I believe that when I pose questions to the patrons of the Paugus Diner that I'm not using questions designed to elicit a predetermined result. I also allow a full range of answers, not just a multiple choice selection also designed to give a predetermined result.
Results: In progress for the upcoming 2008 New Hampshire Primary. Expect to start seeing poll results some time late in 2007.
Finish the Trilogy. I've completed two of the three novels in a trilogy I've been working on for a couple of years. I put aside the third volume only a third finished due to familial time constraints over the past 8 months.
Results: Not done, but farther along than I expected. The last book is turning out to be far longer than I had planned. Sometimes it just goes that way.
Take a closer look at the local and state political atmosphere. I've been slacking at that, something I'm usually pretty good at doing. I've let too many of the local pols slide and it's time I got back to hammering away at these folks who are spending our money and not doing a very good job of it.
Results: I have to give this one a 50/50. I could certainly do better.
Raise hell at Town Meeting. Oh, yeah! That's gonna be interesting, particularly when they try to convince us that a town of approximately 6,000 year round residents needs to spend one-third the cost of the new middle school for a police station. Somehow, $3.33 million seems like it's a little much for a small police force, don't you think?
Results: Done. Sort of. I also raised a few small points during the School District meeting, too. I could do a hell of a lot better.
Actually take and post more pictures to the blog. Hell, maybe I'll actually get around to it this coming year.
Results: Not even close. I did put up a few pics here and there, but not nearly as many as I'd hoped.
Never make a New Year's Resolution list ever again. Yeah, like that will ever happen.....
Over all, not great. Not bad, but not great.
Taking a look at some observations and predictions from last year, some things came true, others didn't.
In politics we've seen the Democrats melting down as more of the fringe elements have taken control of the party while marginalizing the moderate members. The Republicans have squandered their majority position in Congress and in the process have become the party of big spending and big government, the antithesis of their supposed raison d'etre.
Time, and elections, have proven some of the point. Republicans lost control of the House and Senate in Congress, as well as in a number of state legislatures. In my estimation, as well as that of at least one Democratic analyst, it wasn't so much an endorsement of the Democratic agenda as it was a rebellion against Republican spendthrifts. The fringes of the Democratic party are still trying to marginalize the moderates, an example of that being how the DNC treated Joe Lieberman.
The war in Iraq has been the focus all throughout the year, with competing viewpoints clamoring for dominance among the Main Stream Media and bloggers. The MSM keeps implying we're losing while the 'boots on the ground' mil-bloggers paint an entirely different picture. “Which one is right?” has been the question since the beginning of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Not much has changed here except that too many of the American public are buying the “We're losing!” line from the MSM. Many Americans seem to think that we can just pull out from Iraq without there being any consequences, an action that will have deadly results. To quote Winston Churchill, “One ought never to turn one's back on a threatened danger and try to run away from it. If you do that you will double the danger. But if you meet it promptly and without flinching, you will reduce the danger by half.” This is a lesson that too many Americans have ignored. By giving the impression that we can't or won't stick out a difficult war or protracted battle, we give out enemies license to come after us again and again and again. And they will, knowing that after a while they can wear down the will of the American people by using our own media against us. There's a phrase that comes to mind when I think of such a thing – Surrender by stages. That is what many on the Left and within the MSM appear to be promoting. Never mind that they would be unlikely to survive such a surrender better than anyone else.
So my track record in regards to last year's resolutions and observations/predictions isn't all that great. I did call it correctly in regards to the Red Sox not making it to the World Series in 2006, but blew it big when it came to the Patriots pulling off a third consecutive Super Bowl win.
I don't really have any new resolutions to bring forward as I'm still working on last year's. When it comes to predictions, I am willing to make a few. Here goes:
The Democratic House will try to roll back the Bush tax cuts for the rich (meaning folks like you and me, folks that have jobs) but will fail, either because some of the Democrats in the House realize that it would be political suicide or because the President will veto any such legislation.
Nancy Pelosi will realize, if she hasn't already, that wanting to be Speaker of the House and being the Speaker of the House are two entirely different things. She will also realize that she is now under a sharply focused microscope and won't be as free to act in pushing forward her leftist agenda as she has in the past.
Despite the mid-term election losses, the Republicans will rebound, with many of the neo-cons being pushed aside and the more moderate and pragmatic conservative Republicans retaking some seats in the House and Senate. The Republicans will regain the majority in the Senate in 2008, but only by one or two seats.
The MSM will find themselves coming under increasing criticism and scrutiny by both bloggers and the public in general. Some of the larger newspapers, specifically the New York Times and the Boston Globe, a NYT organ, will see dramatic drops in readership. Some MSM outlets will be found to be nothing more than public mouthpieces for the jihadist/harabahi organizations in the Middle East, much like CNN was for the Ba'athists in Iraq.
There will be more Iranian interference discovered in Iraq, particularly by the intelligence services and the Pasdaran, trying to foment more unrest by the Shiites. The focus of their efforts will be found to be their puppet, Moqtada al-Sadr. Prime Minister Maliki will be forced to dissolve the various militias by force. Militia moles will be purged from the police force and Iraqi Defense Forces.
We'll check back at the beginning of next year to see how close I've come. One or two of these predictions may not play put until late in 2008, but I'm willing to wait.