SATIRE

RAISING THE BARR: Clayton Barr's "crystal ball" predictions for 2021

HUMOUR: As in previous years, Member for Cessnock Clayton Barr's crystal ball predictions for 2021 are unlikely to come true.
HUMOUR: As in previous years, Member for Cessnock Clayton Barr's crystal ball predictions for 2021 are unlikely to come true.

In a column that should come with a warning "dangerous content" label, it is that time of the year when I gaze into my crystal ball to see what is in store for the year ahead.

If you don't want to know what the future holds, then reading this column should be no problem at all. However, if you don't appreciate a little bit of tongue-in-cheek humour then please don't go past the next paragraph.

Before I get into the silly stuff, I am sure that we all hope for a successful, smooth and fast roll-out of a COVID vaccine in 2021. There is no doubt that this will take some time, possibly years. It is also quite a complicated process and significant money will be needed to help it all happen. Fingers crossed our Federal and State Governments have a plan for all of this.

Now, as I gaze into the crystal ball I see many promising and positive events for the coming year. To start with, given that science has played such an important role in addressing COVID, I can see politicians suddenly turning to science to inform other decisions; letting the facts inform the decision making and being honest with the community. Scotty from Marketing will be out of place in this new world order and have to be replaced.

I see a year ahead where not one single player from either the NRL or AFL makes a goose of himself. No fights in pubs. No drug use. No cheating on their partner/wife. It will be a golden year for the various codes and the CEOs of both sports will be knighted by the Queen at year's end.

Locally, I see trains in the crystal ball. Trains! The spirits are telling me that 2021 will be the year when passenger train services return to the various villages of Cessnock and a trip to Newcastle can once again be a 90-minute train ride instead of a 40-50 minute drive.

The crystal ball is also highlighting the words "privacy" and "confidentiality" for 2021. No doubt this indicates a new path forward for the NSW Government as they farm all of our data from the QR codes they have put into place in a COVID response. They will know where we have been and who we were there with and how long we stayed. And after having hundreds of thousands of documents stolen/hacked into, from Government files, during 2020, and not making any profit from the experience, in 2021 the Government will choose to simply sell our information to the highest bidder in 2021. It's a free market baby!

And rest assured folks, the crystal ball is clearly showing a large orange man in America in handcuffs and behind bars.

REFLECTING ON MY 2020 PREDICTIONS

Last year's crystal ball predictions were a mixed result. Yes some celebrities died suddenly and yes some of our national footballers were involved in trouble. But there was no words on who really shot JFK, where Elvis is or what the aliens are doing here on planet earth. Also, Gladys did survive the year as Premier and the orange man in America hasn't gone to jail ... yet! There is no word on the possibility of a flat earth, possibly because no one ever comes back from that journey out to the edge.

Without doubt the greatest crystal ball failure for the 2020 year that we have had was the failure to predict a global pandemic that would see entire countries and major cities go into full lock-down. A distant second, but still significant failure of the ball was the inability to foresee the NSW Premier at ICAC lose her memory and her ability to utter the word "intimate" when describing her secret seven-year relationship. Fingers crossed the crystal ball won't have any major misses like those, in 2021.

Clayton Barr is the State MP for Cessnock

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