What year is it? I’ve no idea and it’s getting increasingly confusing. We are currently waiting for Euro 2020 and the 2020 Olympics, even though my diary says it’s 2021. Anyway, it seems as good a time as any to go back to our 2020 Vision, where we predicted what the following year would bring.
Here is the article we published at the beginning of January 2020:
In my opinion, it all started to unravel in 2016.
Donald Trump was voted president, David Bowie and Muhammad Ali died and we voted for Brexit. The world has not recovered.
So will things improve over the next 12 months?
November sees an American election and Trump could be gone, but in the UK we will be seeing just how divided and isolated Brexit has left us as the Tories refuse to even mention the B word. One-nation conservatism my arse.
It’s going to be a big year for sport, with the Tokyo Olympics and the 2020 Euros, spread across 12 countries. The new cricket 100 format will flop resoundingly.
Sustainability will be the new buzzword and we might get as sick of it as the B word. World and business leaders in Glasgow will promise to support sustainable capitalism but will their shareholders let them (see baby boomers)?
The World Expo will take place in Dubai and Saudi Arabia will host the g20 summit. Welcome to the Gulf.
Mars will become the new Everest, with America, Europe, China and the UAE all sending probes up, with some spectacular failures. Private business will facilitate the race for space to become as polluted and junk-filled as the earth.
We want them to develop flying taxis and self-driving electric cars shaped like unicorns, but tech giants are going to face the indignities of taxation and increased scrutiny, particularly around the presidential election, which will provide a catalyst for further-deteriorating international relations between the US and pretty much everyone else.
2020 is the 250th anniversary of Beethoven, 200 years since the birth of Florence Nightingale, which will be a huge event, the WHO has even designated 2020 the Year of the Nurse. It is also 50 years since the Beatles split up and 75 since the founding of the UN.
Some diehards will go to the cinema to watch the 25th James Bond film, but everyone else will gorge on a proliferation of streaming channels, which they will come to regret in a few years’ time, when the Tories abolish the BBC and the surviving media content companies start charging more than the licence fee for a diet of rubbish films and reality TV.
Baby-boomers hit 65 and the world will have more people over the age of 30 than under for the first time. The young-old will probably be the last resistance to the aforementioned sustainable capitalism, as they try to protect their pensions invested in environmentally dodgy stocks and shares.
The question used to be, “What would the chairman’s wife think?”, now it is more likely to be “What would the chairman’s grandchildren think?”
His grandchildren would probably think that eating animals is wrong and there will be a rapid push towards vegan food on the high street (Gregg’s vegan sausage roll led the way) and plant-based monstrosities will be on sale everywhere.
The times are definitely a changin’ and below are some things we are going to miss, or miss a bit more, as they start to disappear from our lives in 2020:
Five day tests
Looking back, we were spot on in our prediction that things were not going to get better in 2020. But, we should probably have been more prescient about losing our freedom.
Following Brexit, things have continued to get worse within Europe, with Europe and the UK at loggerheads over everything from vaccines, import tariffs and football.
Scotland are self-consciously out of step with the British government and seem hell-bent on leaving the Union as soon as possible.
The NHS have come to the UK’s rescue in its time of need, and have been handsomely rewarded with a 1% pay increase and some clapping.
The BBC is totally under siege from the right-wing press and are criticised if they either do or don’t cowtail to the government and the monarchy.
C4: Who cares?
Tobacco: sales have rocketed during lockdown. Obviously.
Meat: Still there, but we are told to limit consumption to a maximum of twice a week, or we will die.
Holidays: Spot on there. They have gone for the foreseeable.
The stars. Well; because of the lack of flights, the stars are still very much out there and visible, but will soon be obstructed by the increasing space junk and possible wars, as space is increasingly seen as the new geography for nations to fight over.
David Bowie: The Starman has well and truly left us.
In conclusion: We got a lot right, but maybe for the wrong reasons. It is hard to think this is not all down to governments having a last-gasp effort to save the environment. What could be better for the environment than for the whole world to be shut down and the effects on the environment observed, studied and then reported.
Basically, the governments have colluded to put the world to rest while they hope new technologies will come to our rescue. It may sound like a conspiracy theory, but I can’t think of any other reason for the world to be shut down.
COP 26 is taking place in Glasgow later this year and the US have promised to halve greenhouse emissions by 2030. Car manufacturers have re-engineered to all-electric production.
There will be huge changes to our lives, have we been softened up for something we can’t deny wanting, but would never have taken responsibility for?
If this right, then no aspect of our life will be untouched; especially work.