This will not happen next year.

Photographer: Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

'Star Trek' Will Be in 'Star Wars' in 2015

Stephen L. Carter is a Bloomberg View columnist. He is a professor of law at Yale University and was a clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall. His novels include “The Emperor of Ocean Park” and “Back Channel,” and his nonfiction includes “Civility” and “Integrity.”
Read More.
a | A

As 2014 draws to a close, I offer my predictions for the new year. Some are serious, some are whimsical, most are heartfelt. They are not listed in order of importance.

* * *

In 2015 ...

With the help of U.S.-led coalition attacks on Islamic State, the Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad will survive another year. To his east, however, without the aid of Western ground troops, the security forces of the Baghdad regime will do little to reverse territorial losses. Increasing numbers of pundits will question whether Iraq still exists as a nation in the traditional sense.

* * *

The price of bitcoins will stabilize but not rise significantly against the dollar. More merchants around the world will accept the virtual currency, although most will immediately convert their bitcoin receipts to dollars or euros.

* * *

Magnus Carlsen will lose the world chess championship to Fabiano Caruana, who will become the first Italian to win the title. (Bonus 2016 prediction: A freshly energized Carlsen will be victorious in a rematch.)

* * *

The new “Star Wars” movie will include an "Easter egg" shot in which the USS Enterprise appears for a few seconds. We will also see at least one extra made up as a Vulcan.

                                                    * * *

Recent high valuations for tech startups will turn out to be a bubble after all, as a maturing industry begins to face an analogue of the problem that has plagued, for instance, book publishers: the difficulty of getting overwhelmed consumers even to notice a new product or service, no matter how excellent it might be.

* * *

My beloved Washington R-word football team will endure another losing season with the same name. But after a likely third consecutive last-place finish in 2015 -- and the 10th losing record in what will then be the 17 seasons since he purchased the team -- owner Daniel Snyder will yield at last to the force of karma, and announce a switch. I’m still betting on “Bravehearts,” although a lot of the smart money is on “Redtails.” My favorite remains “the Washington Scandal.” (What will make the difference is which name best fits the iconic fight song -- thus no “Hogs” or “Warriors” or the like.)

* * *

Liberal regulatory overreach will cause public opinion to turn sharply against Democrats. Conservative legislative overreach will cause public opinion to turn sharply against Republicans. Furious middle-of-the-road voters, the ones everybody fights over, will decide that they can’t support either party. Then, when there is low turnout in the 2016 election, pundits will mournfully blame voter apathy.

* * *

Critics will praise the final episodes of “Mad Men” to the skies, but the ratings will continue to founder. The return of “The Walking Dead” will continue to set viewership records. AMC will be happy both ways.

* * *

U.S. colleges and universities will continue to seek innovative ways of limiting dissent from progressive orthodoxy, while insisting vehemently that they are doing nothing of the kind. More students will be taught that their feelings of the moment are an appropriate basis for policy. And as higher education itself continues to fragment, worried employers will search ever harder for signals other than the receipt of a college degree that show the applicant’s ability to do the job.

* * *

The globe will fail to grow measurably warmer in 2015. Climate change doubters will cackle. Those of us who worry about the effect of greenhouse gas emissions will undertake the thankless task of pointing out that the extra heat is probably hiding deep in the oceans. And possibly in the upper oceans too.

* * *

The San Francisco Giants will not reach the World Series. No team from the Eastern Conference will win the championship of the National Basketball Association. The National Collegiate Athletic Association will continue to use the uncompensated services of student athletes to enrich member institutions.

* * *

The news media will continue to misreport the statements and actions of Pope Francis as departures from fundamental Catholic doctrine.

* * *

The sleeper film of 2015 will turn out to be the still-untitled Steven Spielberg-Tom Hanks collaboration about the mission of the lawyer James B. Donovan to negotiate the release of U-2 pilot Gary Powers from Soviet custody. (If the film is bumped to 2016, so is this prediction.)

* * *

Amazon will fix the gaping security hole in the redesigned interface for its video service, which now requires that users enter their PIN numbers on the television screen -- where any guest in the house can see which buttons are pushed -- rather than on the keypad of the remote control.

* * *

While we are on the subject, ESPN will continue not to fix the glitch that makes it impossible, when following a football game online, to display the plays in the current drive. (Clicking the link for the current drive displays only the most recent play.)

* * *

New York City’s deep divisions will begin to heal because, as Vice President Joe Biden said at the funeral for officer Rafael Ramos, slain alongside his partner Wenjian Liu, “This incredibly diverse city can and will show the nation how to bridge any divide.” The healing will require courage. It will require a muting of rhetoric. It will be painful. It will be slow. But it will come.

* * *

That’s what I wish I could predict for this entire troubled globe: a season of healing. I can’t honestly predict it. Still, we can all pray and hope for it. Then the new year might truly be happy.

This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg View's editorial board or Bloomberg LP, its owners and investors.

To contact the author on this story:
Stephen L Carter at scarter01@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor on this story:
Michael Newman at mnewman43@bloomberg.net