Review: Whitewater Predictions for 2016

Here’s my amateur version of the late William Safire’s long-standing tradition of offering annual predictions. The was the list for 2016, the FW ninth-annual edition. Let’s see how I did (keeping in mind that it’s easier when one drafts the list):

1. Whitewater’s economy will
A. Expand along with the American economy
B. Expand more slowly than the American economy
C. Be stagnant
D. Fall into recession

Adams’s guess: C. Be stagnant.
Correct answer: C. There’s no discernible net growth.

2. For the Whitewater Schools, the biggest issue will be
A. Budgetary
B. Academic
C. Athletic
D. Of the arts and music

Adams’s guess: A. Budgetary. 
Correct answer: A. Budgetary. The single biggest public-relations tool for this school district has been successful referendums. It shouldn’t be anywhere close to the biggest topic, but it is. 

3. Local government’s efforts to reach out, generally, to residents to encourage participation in government affairs will be a
A. Smashing success
B. Slight success
C. Slight disappointment
D. Significant disappointment

Adams’s guess: D. Significant disappointment.
Correct answer: D. Significant disappointment. It’s a same-ten-people problem, and a same-ten-people problem that keeps getting worse (as local government has trouble successfully encouraging competitive residents to take part on committees, boards, etc.). 

4. Local government’s efforts to reach out, specifically, to Hispanic residents to encourage participation in government affairs will be a
A. Smashing success
B. Slight success
C. Slight disappointment
D. Significant disappointment

Adams’s guess: D. Significant disappointment.
Correct answer: D. Significant disappointment. It’s not a same-ten-people problem; despite the size of the Hispanic community in Whitewater, participation in government affairs from that community is more like a same-two-or-three-people problem.   

5. In the April 5 primary election, Whitewater’s electorate will be
A. Predominantly Democratic
B. Predominantly Republican
C. Roughly split between the major parties
D. Impossible to determine

Adams’s guess: C. Roughly split between the major parties.
Correct answer: A. Predominantly Democratic in the city proper.

6. In the November 8 general election, Whitewater’s electorate will be
A. Predominantly Democratic
B. Predominantly Republican
C. Roughly split between the major parties
D. Impossible to determine

Adams’s guess: A. Predominantly Democratic. 
Correct answer: A. Predominantly Democratic. Clinton won the city proper (the area in question); Trump won the towns outside that form the rest of our local school district. Add those other towns to the city total, and Trump carried the larger area.

7. On November 8, Whitewater will vote between major-party candidates
A. Clinton and Rubio
B. Clinton and Cruz
C. Sanders and Bush
D. Sanders and Trump

Adams’s guess: B. Clinton and Cruz.
Correct answer: None of the choices offered.

8. For UW-Whitewater, the biggest issue will be
A. Budgetary
B. Academic
C. Athletic
D. Campus relations and sexual assault prevention

Adams’s guess: D. Campus relations and sexual assault prevention.
Correct answer: D. Campus relations and sexual assault prevention. It’s a national story, of federal administrative complaints and a federal civil lawsuit now. No other topic touted locally has had anywhere near the impact of these national stories. 

9. The biggest community event of 2016 will be the
A. July 4th events @ Cravath
B. City Market
C. Christmas Parade
D. Run Whitewater

Adams’s guess: A. July 4th @ Cravath. 
Correct answer: A. July 4th @ Cravath. It’s still the biggest event in the city, although perhaps cumulatively a good year for the City Market might change that. 

10. The surprising development of 2016 will be the
A. Discovery of gold beneath the Starin Park water tower
B. Discovery of a witches’ coven beneath the Starin Park water tower
C. End of one local print newspaper
D. Departure of one local leader

Adams’s guess: B. Discovery of a witches’ coven beneath the Starin Park water tower.
Correct answer: None of these choices, as more than one leader departed in 2016, the same mediocre newspapers are crawling along, and we’ve found neither witches nor gold.

Tomorrow: Whitewater’s Outlook for 2017.