My predictions for 2022
- 8 correct guesses
- 6 mixed bags
- 12 false prophecies
Well, here we are again. 2021 is almost over, and it was better than 2020, thank… well, you should probably thank every God just to cover your bases and make sure it doesn’t happen again. (And the biologists, too. They have a vial of smallpox and they know how to use it!)
So. What do i think might happen in 2022? Since you asked, here’s my list of predictions, in no particular order. Some of these i’m absolutely sure of; some of these are just a wild guess. I’ll come back at the end of the year and give each one a grade, from “aye” to “kinda” to “nah”.
🦠 The pandemic 💉
There will be no mask or distancing mandate in England by the autumn
The “plan B” measures will likely be relaxed at
some point in March — perhaps earlier if Tory backbenchers get too fed up.
If anything, i was too bearish: England dropped its restrictions in February and never looked back.
The booster jab rollout will proceed unremarkably, as we
all silently accept that we’re just going to have to treat covid like the
Quadruple-jabbed and haven’t had to think about it ever. Maybe it’s different elsewhere, but here in the UK, you hardly hear a peep about covid these days.
Australia will continue being paranoid, but New Zealand
will slowly start reducing restrictions.
Australia and New Zealand ended up lifting their restrictions at around the same time in the autumn.
🦁 The United Kingdom 🦄
Queen Elizabeth will die. I say this every year, but i
genuinely do think this will be the year — it’s not uncommon for widows to
pass shortly after their spouses, and she’s been attending notably fewer
public events recently. Some related predictions:
Rest in peace, ma’am.
Her death will be after the Platinum Jubilee
celebrations, simply by virtue of them being relatively early on in the year.
Nevertheless, it’ll put something of a damper on the national mood.
Indeed it was and indeed it did, though the public went from grief to shouting “God save the King!” quicker than i’d expected.
Somebody famous will get sacked as a result of
ill-advised commentary, probably from the
Everything went according to keikaku for the Beeb. The closest we got was a U.S.-American university professor being edgy on Twitter, and she didn’t even lose her job!
- Her death will be after the Platinum Jubilee celebrations, simply by virtue of them being relatively early on in the year. Nevertheless, it’ll put something of a damper on the national mood.
Boris Johnson will muddle along as prime minister despite
Not only did Bozza get the boot, but his lettuce-like successor set the record for Britain’s shortest-serving leader.
A terrorist attack of some kind will occur in Northern Ireland.
Tensions have been rising for some time, and, though nobody wants it to
happen, one can’t escape the feeling that it will.
Some attempted killings and bomb threats here and there, but overall the year had a death toll of 0 from terrorism. I’m glad to be wrong.
In the local elections:
The Lib Dems will make gains,
Labour will also make gains, but not as much, and the Reform Party and Ukip will backslide.
Pretty good going for the most part, but the Reform party technically made gains by going from zero council seats to two.
A refugee from Hong Kong will get elected to a local
Just a feeling.
Nothing that i can find.
Someone who is neither male nor female will get elected to a
relatively major position
and the press will have a paddy over it.
Ehh… not really? Bangor already had a non-binary mayor, and a Green councillor in Monmouthshire seems to have come out some time after the election, but it doesn’t look like anyone publicly out at the time was elected, and the tabloids didn’t particularly care.
- The Lib Dems will make gains, Labour will also make gains, but not as much, and the Reform Party and Ukip will backslide.
🦅 The United States 🗽
The Democrats get absolutely pummelled in the midterms, as
Biden’s popularity flags and roadblocks in the Senate prevent much from
I should have trusted the plan. Thank you, Dark Brandon.
Donald Trump will have a major figure excommunicated from the
likely a potential 2024 candidate. Ron DeSantis? Mitch McConnell? Himself?
The opposite now looks likely. Mr Trump’s chosen candidates flopped against their Democratic opponents, and Mr DeSantis’ popularity among the GOP continues to rise.
Kyle Rittenhouse will run for Congress. This will somehow
be the least stupid thing to happen in the United States in 2022.
Mr Rittenhouse is not actually old enough to run for Congress. 2024 — mark my words.
Several people will die at the hands of a or many “QAnon”
Mass bleach-drinking? Someone shoots up that pizza place again? We’ll have
to wait and see.
A man from suburban Detroit shot and killed his wife and dog in the year’s only death which i could directly attribute to QAnon — a tragedy to be sure, but not “several people”.
🌍 The rest of the world 🌏
Xi Jinping will shit himself. Okay, not literally,
but many world leaders will likely make efforts to distance themselves from
the Chinese government.
He replaced his advisors with yes-men. The U.S. cut off China’s semiconductor industry from the world. And his government’s zero-covid policies were so disastrous they led to a rare public protest. 2022 was a very bad, no good year for Winnie-the-Pooh.
A multinational company will close its offices in Hong
due to concerns about civil liberties.
Virgin Atlantic and Salesforce closed their doors — but the former cited declining profitability, and the latter wanted to pivot to the mainland, hardly a sign of concern for the city’s people.
- A multinational company will close its offices in Hong Kong due to concerns about civil liberties.
Emmanuel Macron will be reëlected as president of France.
I blame the chest hair photoshoot myself.
Notre Dame redesign plans
will be quietly replaced with something more in keeping with the building’s
The current compromise is here to stay.
Gay marriage will be legalised in another Asian or African
We’re coming for you, Uganda! (It won’t be Uganda.)
Thailand’s parliament took tepid steps towards legalisation, but the year’s big success story was instead in Cuba.
📱 Technology (sorry) 💽
The “metaverse” will neither be a gigantic flop nor as big
as its proponents hope. Some people will quietly adopt virtual office
spaces, teenagers will get VR headsets for their
birthday, and furries will continue being furries, but there will be no
I can’t give this a yes-or-no mark in good faith — the way i phrased the prediction, it’s the sort of thing that will play out over the next decade rather than the last year. Whoops. In any case, Facebook’s “metaverse” app was widely panned by critics, whereas its flashy new hardware has been praised for its specs and hand-tracking capabilities. We’ll see where VR goes.
The NFT bubble will burst.
Sorry, i mean, uh… the token that represents your claim of ownership to a
jpeg of the NFT bubble will burst?
Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha
Someone will announce a mid-range or “budget” folding phone,
opening the floodgates to more widespread adoption. Probably Xiaomi.
Xiaomi released a thin-ass pholding phone… in Europe and Asia. So too did sanction-racked Huawei and apparently-still-around Motorola. Only time will tell if they’ll take off or if the Yankee public will cringe at the hinge.
🎬 Entertainment 💿
Avatar 2 will bomb and possibly kill James Cameron’s
career. Really: who on earth is actually excited by the idea of an
Avatar sequel? Someone? Anyone?
As i write this, Avatar: The Way of Water has made 700 million dollars and counting, and it’s still in the early days of its release. Mr Cameron’s career will be just fine.
The year’s blockbusters will largely be fine.
Nothing great, nothing terrible. Wow, another Marvel sequel? I’d have never
That one where the moon crashes into the
might be good dumb fun.
Three words: Top Gun: Maverick.
Someone will drop the album of the decade. You hear those
rumours about Kendrick Lamar?
Mr Lamar and Beyoncé dropped two well-reviewed records after a long sabbatical from music. Online nerds loved Black Country, New Road’s Ants From Up There. But the former two are far from their authors’ most acclaimed, and the latter failed to shore up critics at year’s end. I’ll be surprised if any decade-end lists have a 2022 album at the top spot.