January always brings customary predictions for what the New Year will hold. While some laugh at Doomsday prophesies based on Mayan calendars, others are concerned about the election year, the economy or business opportunities. One thing is for sure, 2012 offers an abundance of events ripe for prognostication. Flagstaff Business News asked Northern Arizonans what was on their minds as they pondered the coming year.
“There will be more Biomedical Engineers living and working in Northern Arizona than the entire Boulder, Colo. region!” forecasts Daniel J. Kasprzyk, of Machine Solutions (MSI). “What we can bank on in 2012 is: MSI will surpass 100 employees; MSI will double our office and manufacturing space in Flagstaff; and MSI will complete our first strategic acquisition, effectively doubling our annual revenue,” said the president and CEO of the Flagstaff company.
“2012 will see the beginning of the restoration of American democracy. Here’s how it will happen: someone, somewhere will run and win a key election with a Zero Dollar Campaign run exclusively through free social media,” said Geoffrey S. Barnard of the new Flagstaff Ale Trail. “Just as social media led the Arab Spring, social media will revolutionize our 2012 elections. How? …Social media avoids the cost of TV ads. Social media is more targeted, energizes new voting blocs (especially young voters), and is free.
“When it is demonstrated in 2012 that, for example, a Congressional seat can be won for essentially zero dollars, instead of a million or more, Congress can no longer be bought and sold by powerful lobbyists. The power of lobbyists and their political contributions will dramatically wane. American democracy will be saved and restored,” portended Barnard, former director of the Grand Canyon Trust.
On the other hand, John Lopez, editor of Collapse Watch Newsletter, Flagstaff, predicted, “2012 will be a year fraught with serious financial challenges as well as continued attacks to our civil rights. Thanks to Ben Bernanke and the United States Federal Reserve, its continuing money printing activities could bring about a crash of the U.S. dollar in 2012, leaving most people’s paper asset-based nest eggs nearly worthless. Thanks to the U.S. Congress, the Bill of Rights has been suspended with the passage of the National Defense Authorization Act, Section 1031 and 1032. This new law allows the military, upon direction by the President, to detain without cause or due process any American citizen on U.S. soil and toss them into the already built detention camps.
“Suffice it to say that a year from now, the lives of most Americans are going to be radically different from what they are used to now. Thanks to the warning that Janet Napolitano provided to her friends in Phoenix about a year ago, many have had the opportunity to prepare for this time in U.S. history,” added Lopez, BA, MBA and financial consultant.
Keith McClanahan, principal at Facility Issues, Flagstaff and consultant to Fortune 500s, said, “I see 2012 to be similar to 2011:
• Wages will match inflation at about two percent.
• There will be minor improvement in the job growth, with unemployment declining slightly – basically even with the increasing workforce and a significant portion of the working workforce will be under-employed.
• House prices will continue to fall, as I think there are more homeowners underwater than economists show. Flagstaff housing will not follow this trend.
• There will be continued reductions in services provided by state and local governments and education.
• Falling house prices and low interest rates will exacerbate the poor financial situation of retirees.”
Carlton N. Hill, retired law enforcement officer, predicted, “2012 is going to be a tumultuous year for this nation, both economically and politically. This coming year will see many changes in lifestyle for a multitude of people.”
Another Flagstaff retiree, Diana Kalas, said, “I predict the pull-out of our forces in Iraq will result in even more deadly violence in that war-torn country and more terrorism around the world. While here at home I predict we will have to continue learning to do more with less as our economy continues to falter.”
“Tax law is going to change in 2012, and it’s going to be more complicated,” decried Flagstaff CPA Gene Baker.
Dr. Greg Hackler, a chiropractic physician in Winslow, was pulling someone’s leg when he said, “I predict the imminent forthcoming of a leap year because of Feb. 29, I believe 2012 is going to be fantastic in that the 12/21/12 end of the world hype is the new Y2K, and am fairly confident that Mercury will go into retrograde sometime during the year, necessitating an increased need for computer technicians.”
Kim Yuhl of Fizz Bath, Flagstaff prognosticated, “After a race to find ‘bath salts’ illegal in many states across the country, the local drug enforcement agency in Flagstaff raids Fizz Bath Shop only to find their bath salts to be natural and healthy.”
“I predict that in 2012 the educational climate in Flagstaff will become stronger as we all work together towards aligning to the National Core Standards. As that happens, I predict that students all over the city, state and nation will begin to get the education they all deserve!” Toni Keberlein, principal, Northland Preparatory Academy, Flagstaff, forecasted.
“I am an optimist and feel confident about the future. I believe the economy will pull itself slowly out of this recession. It will take some hard work and difficult choices for Congress to get their bipartisan groove on. I have been extremely lucky to have a great job with benefits that has helped keep us afloat. My territory is growing and I predict a healthy selling period on my part and a decent raise. There is hope for a better future as our troops come home and we will have relative peace once again,” predicted Melanie Nelson, General Surgery Sales, WL Gore Medical Products, Flagstaff. FBN
Photo) Daniel J. Kasprzyk of Machine Solutions By Michael Bielecki
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Machine Solutions – www.machinesolutions.com