Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Blatantly Apolitical Predictions for 2021

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Avoiding discussion of US politics, please.

There will be some fairly sizeable economic waves and shortages of services and weekend getaways, as the world post-pandemic en masse gets tired of the all same things at roughly all the same time and goes out for a breather. Seats for sporting venues, any sporting venue, be it football or cricket or tennis or god help us even baseball will be impossible to come by without good connections.

Bitcoin will stabilize as a more legitimate method of transaction and be approved as such by a major online retailer or ten in lieu of some unstable currencies in developing markets, especially developing markets also hit hard by COVID. They'll get some serious pushback from the powers that be, and the resulting fight will last a decade or so. The best sporting events will have loads of scalpers operating in Bitcoin.

Facebook and social media in general will struggle as people tire of virtual information.

An evolved bit of COVID-19 will escape the immune response and require another go at vaccines, but be effectively isolated to a few regions of whereveristan. The markets will temporarily freak out as a result.

RayfordSteele, Nov 30 2020

“The Black Hole Of Negrav” https://oikofuge.co...orthodox-engineers/
"... spins fast enough on its axis that centrifugal force overwhelms gravity ..." [8th of 7, Dec 02 2020]


       NO ! NO ! ENOUGH ALREADY ! Bad, naughty [kdf], you shall have a smack , and no Ketracel white for you today.
8th of 7, Nov 30 2020

       Congratulations, an Agony Booth has just come free. In you go ...   

       Don't complain, or it will be you screaming through the bars of the Wicker man at the Solstice Bonfire ...
8th of 7, Nov 30 2020

       // Baseball //   

       <Gentle snoring/>
8th of 7, Nov 30 2020

       <Slow, regular bleep of hibernation pod/>
8th of 7, Nov 30 2020

       Yes, very nice, thankyou. A glass of prosecco with it, and do you have any saltine crackers ?
8th of 7, Nov 30 2020

       For him (not them) it's got to be about Kadis-kot or Parrises Squares so he can peg the geek gauge a little more.
tatterdemalion, Nov 30 2020

       Parrises Squares is for meatheads like Riker ... he even does Anbo-Jyutsu ....   

       You might as well sit in a corner and poke your facial orifices with a Bat'leth; it's more fun.   

       No, we prefer Strategema, and the occasional Chula match ...
8th of 7, Nov 30 2020

       Gossip about politicians is entirely within limits.   

       Tigers? Not a clue. Haven't really follows them since they sold off the good pitchers.
RayfordSteele, Nov 30 2020

       //Avoiding discussion of US politics, please// OK so the 1922 committee will meet in mid-January. Starmer will tour the European capitals and make a series of carefully timed speeches and press releases. During one of these, he will be arrested for visa & work permit technicalities live on air. The entire court system in every country in Europe will grind to a halt due to the number of specialist detail cases brought by individuals and companies. As part of the legal fallout from this it will be discovered in July that Scotland is already independent and currently holds the presidency of the EU, the World Bank, and the International Olympics Committee. Meanwhile, a series of increasingly panicked editorials in the newspapers keeps urging readers (though circulation has dropped because no-one is reading newspapers any more) to remember that there is also political stuff happening in the US but everyone continues to ignore it.
pocmloc, Dec 01 2020

       // political stuff happening in the US but everyone continues to ignore it. //   

       ... because after a successful legal challenge, it turns out that it's still actually a Crown colony and the last 244 years have been an aberration ...
8th of 7, Dec 01 2020

       [kdf] is found dead, mysteriously crushed under a large unlabelled crate of similarly unlabelled vaccine vials.   

       Conspiracy theorists go into ecstasy, citing it as proof that vaccines are life-threateningly dangerous.   

       Sales of gas masks, underground bunker kits, bottled water, canned food and shotguns double overnight. Amazon purchases a fleet of Black Helicopters specially for delivering to survivalists deep in the backwoods.
8th of 7, Dec 01 2020

       //underground bunker kits// Ah yes, the cunningly re-packaged shovel.
pocmloc, Dec 01 2020

       Hah ! You don't get short-changed when you buy an Acme-BorgCo Bunker Kit ... not just a shovel, but a pickaxe, a mattock, a trowel, and a stick-on cave/tunnel entrance* if you can find a vertical solid rock wall to attach it to - saves immense amounts of digging. WARNING: may contain unscheduled trains.   

       *Only suitable for use by cartoon avians and mice. Other cartoon creatures may find themselves running at full speed into a vertical solid rock wall.
8th of 7, Dec 01 2020

       ^ That's actually a good idea. You should suggest it to him.
neutrinos_shadow, Dec 01 2020

       There will be no major advances in AI in 2021. Only consolidation of what we've already learned.
Voice, Dec 02 2020

       Finding small pockets of liquid water on the lunar surface Tardigrades evolve to digest regolith. Growing to enormous size they tunnel deep beneath the crust solidifying passages with their waste. This has the effect of increasing expanding the moon to ten times its current size without changing it's mass one whit.
As their excavations unthinkingly follow the golden ratio the tunnels twist in a spiral pattern.
Flatulence from the consumed regolith jets sporadically from the lunar surface imparting spin on the moon.

       The tardigrades soon exhsaut all consumable substances dying off leaving behind a hollowed out labyrinth of a moon containing pockets of atmosphere and at a certain level mimics one Earth gravity.   

       // At every point at and below the surface it would be substantially LESS than the Moon’s current gravity.//   

       It could mimic one Earth Gravity if it was spinning and you were standing upside down within one of the tunnels close to the equator yes, and pockets of atmosphere could be trapped as well.   

       Donald Trump changes his name by deed poll to: First name: "The"; Second name: "President". He insists that the only two permissable ways of addressing or identifying him are "The President" or "Mr President". He sues everyone who has ever referred to him by any other name, citing the fact that the name "trump" is defamatory and insulting. He also starts to run in every presidential election that happens anywhere in the world. Meanwhile other world leaders start contesting other elections as well, to try and keep up. Elizabeth R is particularly successful, starting her world presidential career after Miggledy steps down and the slate of candidates is restricted to Gerry Adams, Bono, and Elizabeth R. She then runs for President of the EU but is narrowly beaten by Trump. In a suprise twist she runs for chairman and chief executive of as many of Trump's holding companies as she can, gaining majority control of them in suprisingly short time.
pocmloc, Dec 02 2020

       " It could mimic one Earth Gravity if it was spinning and you were standing upside down within one of the tunnels close to the equator yes, and pockets of atmosphere could be trapped as well. — 2 fries shy of a happy meal, Dec 02 2020 "   

       I will grant the possibility for trapping, but what would an appropriate bait be ?
normzone, Dec 02 2020

       (quickly finding the back of an envelope...)
For 1g outwards on the surface of a 10x Moon, you need it to spin at 0.00075 rad/s; 0.0072rpm (equatorial velocity of 13,054m/s). Yes, the regolith dust will fly off; but assuming the Moon takes some time to get up to speed (nobody likes instantaneous acceleration...), it will leave the surface long before full speed is reached; g/6 outwards at the 10x radius needs 5,329m/s, which is far higher than "zero altitude" orbit speed of 531m/s, (quick check) also about twice the escape velocity, so good-bye dust.
(If I've made any errors, please correct me...)
neutrinos_shadow, Dec 02 2020

       There's <fictional> Prior Art ...   


       <Notes further mention of baseball/>   

       ZzzzzzzZZZZZZZZ zzzzzzZZZZZZZZZ ......
8th of 7, Dec 02 2020

       Oh, don't worry about that, everyone here trusts you implicitly ...
8th of 7, Dec 02 2020

       // Having reduced the density of the moon by expanding its diameter** and riddling it with holes, that kind of rotational speed would probably shatter it.//   

       The tardigrade secretions turn out to be as strong as fullerene yet stretchy.
The moon assumes an extreme oblate spheroid shape allowing for even more upside down equatorial walking.

       //For 1g outwards on the surface of a 10x Moon, you need it to spin at 0.00075 rad/s; 0.0072rpm (equatorial velocity of 13,054m/s). Yes, the regolith dust will fly off//   

       Nope, the regolith has all been bound up in stretchy polymer fibers that the tardigrades built the tunnels from.   

       Giant Tardigrade secretions baffle future scientists.
The enzymes in their mutated digestive tracts utilize unfiltered solar radiaiton to bind lunar carbon into fractile pantograph assemblies whereby any effect on the smallest of any one microscopic pantograph translates to distributed force on the whole structure.

       Very stable I assure you.
Look it up.

       I looked it up and the speed of sound says "no".
Voice, Dec 03 2020

       No no, it's all fractal hexagonal pantographs within a dilatant matrix.
Speed of sound is still a factor.
I never said intantaneous distribution of force... just distributed force on the whole if any portion is acted on.

       Sometimes it wiggles for days.   

       er, I mean 'will' wiggle for days.   

       Increased viscosity doesn't necessarily provide improved toughness.
Voice, Dec 03 2020

       Bitcoin = Dunning-Krugerands
UnaBubba, Dec 03 2020

       Yes, and the source of stupidity on this planet is a constant that might as well be harvested for profit.
RayfordSteele, Dec 03 2020

       A constant ? Really ?   

       Observation strongly suggests that the overall amount of stupidity increases geometrically in proportion to the human population.
8th of 7, Dec 08 2020

       We dispute that increased levels of literacy are related to diminished levels of stupidity. After all, there are many apparently literate, articulate people who are also clearly quite stupid (often in the way that only very, very clever people are stupid).   

       Yourself, for example ...
8th of 7, Dec 08 2020

       Political but not party-political. I think the next few years will be dominated by the consequences of all those juicy emergency powers that governments have given themselves on the pretext of fighting Covid. It won't be pretty.
DrBob, Dec 09 2020

       No, it won't. We're looking forward to it.   

       // there might have been a back-handed compliment there. Or not. //   

       ... or possibly just a Terry Pratchett quote ...   

       // You can still find stupid under any rock, //   

       Really ?   

       <Lifts rock/>   


       Oh, hi [kdf] ! Got the right rock first time ... who would have thought it, eh ? Yes, sorry, we know you don't like bright light...   

       <Carefully replaces rock/>
8th of 7, Dec 09 2020

       We know you are proud of having learned how to move rocks, but there's no need to boast.   

       Next year's course is on how to move bits of wood. You need to take a break over Xmas to prepare yourself for what looks to be a demanding curriculum.
pocmloc, Dec 09 2020

       It does sound quite daunting. Don't we have to have a credit for "Telling the difference between rocks and bits of wood 101" first, though ?   

       It certainly sounds much more complicated than teaching the course on "How Not To Be Seen" ....   

       <Reaches for English-Hungarian phrasebook/>
8th of 7, Dec 09 2020

       //Borough Council meeting minutes//
That has the unfortunate side effect of putting EVERYONE to sleep, including the reader...
neutrinos_shadow, Dec 09 2020

       Rubbish! The bit where a point of order was raised about how to reference the previous week's discussion on the price and specification of the recycling bins was gripping!
pocmloc, Dec 09 2020

       //Telling the difference between rocks and bits of wood// That was what last year was all about. You haven't forgotten an entire year's study already have you?
pocmloc, Dec 09 2020

       A few details might have escaped us. Nothing significant ...   

       //Borough Council meeting minutes//   

       ZzzzzzzZZZZZZZZ zzzzzzZZZZZZZZZ ......
8th of 7, Dec 09 2020


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