Brad Meltzer is the bestselling author of The Book of Fate, so his predictions should not be taken lightly. U.S. News & World Report rounded up him and others among America's public intellectuals to get their perspective on what would happen in 2010. Meltzer's crystal ball imagines a right winger's dystopia:
New terror attack on U.S. soil. Also: Look for the fading of Sarah Palin and the rise of Jeb Bush.
OK, technically, the most rabid in the anti-Obama crowd would be delighted by a successful terror attack and all the political capital that could be won. But wither, Palin?
The public intellectuals at ConservativeAmerican.org won't have it! They fired back on what the magazine they've dubbed the "US Democrat News" and boldly declared:
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Jeb may become more popular, but we have news for you, Mr. Meltzer. Sarah Palin is not going anywhere.
Umm, yeah. I'm pretty sure that's exactly what Meltzer predicted. Bush becomes popular. And Palin ain't going anywhere. She's going to stay exactly where she is, which is... hell if I know, but it's damned far away from the White House.
As for the Jeb Bush prediction, that's a little harder to fathom, if only because George W. casts such a long shadow. The people who voted for him in 2004 seem to have had a collective blackout over the experience and have cured their cognitive dissonance by agreeing that Bush was not a true conservative, as he claimed. But it still seems a painful memory for that constituency, such that they'd be hard-pressed to vote for anyone else with that surname in the near future.
Then again, if Meltzer's right about that next terrorist attack on American soil, maybe voters will fall in love with the Bush family the way they did after 9/11.