As always my hopes (and fears) become confused with my predictions as we start another year. And the dominating hope (and fear) is that all those dear to me enjoy good health and happiness. The 'big event' in 2008 which we already know about is the wedding of No 3 son, Tim to his Irish fiancee, Adrienne. The wedding will take place in the magnificent church in our village of Berriew, and the reception will follow in our garden. And its on the anniversary of our own wedding on 26th July, 1969. It will be the first Catholic wedding ever to take place in Berriew Church. I predict that it will be a very happy occasion.
I predict that there will not be a General Election in 2008. I do think that Gordon Brown planned for one, but his ludicrous dithering last September put an end to that. It will be called for early summer, 2009. It seems to me that Gordon Brown is so damaged that he will never recover any significant lead in the opinion polls, and will go to the country as soon as he thinks he has any chance of winning. He knows his history, and will not want to go the full term.
I predict that the relationship between the National Assembly for Wales and the UK Parliament will become very fraught as the inbuilt 'conflict mechanism' which is the Government of Wales Act delivers the inevitable ... conflict. This would become an even bigger problem if the architect of this stupid system of Legislative Competence Orders, Peter Hain is removed from the Welsh Office, for whatever reason - and I predict that he will be.
There will be increasing tension in the Wales Labour Party as contenders to replace Rhodri Morgan start maneuvering for position. I predict that it will come down to a contest between Carwyn Jones and Leighton Andrews. I fancy Leighton to mop up the 'Not Carwyn' votes rather than Andrew Davies - mainly as a consequence of the responsibilities the two of them will have over the next year. I just think he will appeal to Labour MPs more, as they become increasingly estranged from the National Assembly as the rows increase about Legislative Competence Orders. During the summer, Jenny Randerson will replace Mike German as leader of the Liberal Democrats in the Assembly after a bitter contest. It will be reported on page 22 of the Western Mail and very few people will notice.
The Labour Government will announce that several Nuclear Power Stations are to be built. Gordon Brown will be out of the country when the announcement is made, and the reason given for this decision will be to combat climate change.
Hilary Clinton will be elected the first female President of the United States, beating Mike Huckabee in a close and bitter election. She will prove to be a disaster and will last only one term.
England will win the six nations, while Wales will beat only Italy and Scotland in close matches. Despite this, there will be no criticism of Warren Gatland, but Chief Executive, Roger Lewis will become more of a target of fans criticism - the price of taking a high public profile. Joe Calzhage will beat Bernard Hopkins and retire undefeated (Please Joe). David Haye will beat Enzo Maccarinelli, but it will be a good enough fight to demand a return.
Governments in Wales, Westminster and Scotland will conclude that their rush to cover the uplands of our beautiful countryside with wind turbines do not deliver enough energy to justify the damage that they are doing. Every Government's current renewable energy target will be missed.
I predict that there will be pressure put on all politicians to stop 'blogging', as concern grows about the possibility of 'gaffes' and 'independent thought'. I also anticipate that political 'blogs' will grow in popularity and number.
And finally, a hope rather than a prediction is that there should be a by-election in Montgomeryshire - as a result of the current MP being asked to take over as a TV talk show host and to ghost a column for Hello Magazine.