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Economic projections from on high

Economic theory is nothing to be trifled with. So, it is with a bit of trepidation that I report Pat Robertson has come out with his economic projections for 2009. Every time I watch Pat Robertson for more than a few minutes, I keep expecting the admonishment, ‘Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain’. Robertson seems very much like the Wizard of Oz in a suit and tie – a blend of smoke, mirrors and marionette strings unseen by the human eye. At first blush, Robertson spouting breathlessly about the economy is akin to Jim Bakker affirming his late, ex-wife Tammy Faye was a natural beauty who required no enhancement by the make-up purveyors of the world. So, I did some checking and it turns out Robertson’s predictions for 2008 were pretty much on the money. He said oil would go to $150 per barrel – it went to $147. He said gold would go to $1000 an ounce. It did. He predicted a stock market crash in early 2009. It came about four months early. He predicted a recession and darned if we are not right smack dab in the middle of one. He predicted violence and chaos in the world and, well, I guess that one was a no-brainer. Man behind the curtain, indeed! Robertson started and still hosts the television program The 700 Club. It airs on the Christian Broadcast Network, which he also founded. He makes his annual economic forecast during a New Year’s Day chapel service at Regent University where he is founder, president and chancellor. With all that on the resume, I guess economic wizardry is not too much to ask of the man. Robertson says his revelations are the product of a regular end-of-the year prayer retreat. ‘I pray with humility. I hope I’ve heard the Lord. I spend time praying and asking Him for wisdom and if there’s a mistake, it’s not His fault, it’s mine,’ he told The Virginian-Pilot. That process, ladies and gentlemen, is hard to argue with. So, what does he see on the horizon for 2009? It’s a mix of good and bad. First, buy gold. Pat says it’s going to $1900 an ounce. Second, buy that hybrid and get to work on those solar panels and the wind turbine behind the house. Russia is going to create a multinational coalition to gain control of the mideast oil supplies. Sadly, this comes just as the reprised, gas-guzzling Dodge Challenger muscle car is rolling off the assembly line. Third, Islam is fading. According to Pat, muslims are rejecting the violence and bloodshed of a religion of hate. So, ladies, you can forget that sale on burkhas at Target and keep channeling Tammy Faye at the makeup counter. And, finally, Robertson says the economy will begin to rebound in the second quarter of 2009 fueled by government-funded initiatives. Alas, Robertson and I agree this is a giant step toward socialism. '(It) will be the largest transfer of power to Washington since the ‘˜30s but people are willing to accept it because the pain has been so bad,’ Robertson explained. Amen!

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