For a pre-Halloween scare, The eXile gathered a top-notch team of futurologists to lay out the thirteen most frightening possible scenarios for 2008. After reading this list, you’ll agree that next year is shaping up to be the scariest year ever.
1. Edward Limonov/Other Russia takes power
The siloviki feud turns into total war, bringing down both factions, and Vladimir Putin with them. The Other Russia coalition takes advantage of the power vacuum, resulting in an Edward Limonov presidency, with Kasparov as his foreign minister. Foreigners flee, martial law is declared, and yet mysteriously, The eXile’s ad revenues soar after Gazprom signs a 50-year contract to sponsor the Death Porn page.
2. “The Surge” Works
The Iraqi market bombings stop. The IEDs disappear, and ethnic revenge killings become a memory. Multi-ethnic police and army units begin hosting “truth and reconciliation” meetings in what were once blood-spattered communities. After Moqtada al-Sadr lights a symbolic menorah in Mosul, accompanied by Ari Fleishman and the granddaughter of Ariel Sharon, Paul Krugman pens a column conceding “The Neocons Were Right,” and the Daily Show is canceled due to low ratings.
3. Democracy in Burma
After months of sanctions and protests, the Burmese junta abdicates. The U.N. oversees free elections; monks dance in the streets. Then the nightmare happens: Burma becomes just another stop on the Hippie Trail. As the election results roll in, Lonely Planet backpackers are already declaring “Burma is so over,” or “It’s not as authentic as it used to be.” By the time that hot Nobel Prize chick takes power as Burma’s first democratically elected president, the hippie backpackers are already declaring, “I’m glad I got there when I did. The place is crawling with hippie backpackers now.”
4. Sophia Coppola Does A War Movie
Sophia Coppola releases her first ever attempt at a war movie. Set in Iraq, her gripping, poignant exploration of terrorists and soldiers never managing to find a common language, starring Gael García Bernal as General Ricardo Sanchez, is hailed as “The Apocalypse Now of our generation.” She announces as her next project a screen adaptation of It's Me, Eddie, starring Bill Murray.
5. Al Gore Runs, Wins, Concedes
Al Gore reluctantly accepts the Democrat Party nomination for president following a scandal in which Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are forced to drop out after calling each other “bitch-ass oreo” and “miss saggy snatch” in a televised debate. On November election night, counts show Gore with a 400,000 vote advantage in Florida, a 1.5 million victory margin in the overall popular vote, and a clear majority of the electoral college votes. However, as Gore arrives to give his acceptance speech, he’s harassed by a local Republican barbershop quartet. Shaken, Gore decides to concede defeat “for the good of the nation.” He asks all of his voters to support his opponent, the new president-elect Mitt Romney, and takes a seat as the Honorary Chairman of the Berlin Love Parade.
6. Iraq Terrorists Follow Troops Back to U.S., Become Republicans
Rather than a successful surge, America withdraws in defeat from Iraq. As predicted, members of “al-Qaeda in Iraq” hide in American cargo planes returning to military bases around the U.S. Most of the undercover Al Qaeda operatives move to Dearborn, Michigan, others fan out across the country. However, as they blend in with the locals, they find themselves drawn to supporting hardline Republican politicians, their fury directed at the liberal media’s bias. In the next presidential cycle, former Al Qaeda operatives demand that American take a strong line against Russia, and find that Newt Gingrich is “one of them,” the kind of guy they can imagine beheading an infidel with.