The Future Is Easy to Predict Once It’s In the Past

On January 6, 1981, celebrity psychic Tamara Rand made a startling prediction during an interview recorded at KTNV studio Las Vegas. When asked about the new President of the United States, Ronald Reagan, Rand described in remarkable detail how she felt his life to be in danger. She described pain she sensed would occur in his chest, and ultimately suggested that he might be shot. She described the assailant and, when pressed, was able to come up with the name Jack Humley.

No one thought anything of this interview until a few months later. On March 30, an assassination was indeed made on President Reagan by a man remarkably similar to how Rand had described–and his name was John Hinckley. When the video interview surfaced the day after the assassination attempt, the press went wild. Rand was no small time psychic; she had worked with such celebrities as Bob Dylan and Sylvester Stallone. So, she had some semblance of credibility. Since the video had apparently been recorded months ago, it was difficult for even the most ardent skeptic to deny.

So, how did Tamara Rand pull it off? Did she really have psychic abilities that helped her predict President Reagan’s assassination attempt? Well, if you aren’t familiar with the story, you could probably guess how she did it…it was a hoax. The video wasn’t recorded in January; in truth, it was recorded a day after the assassination attempt. How did Tamara Rand predict the future? By making the prediction after the event had already occurred.

In the world of investing, psychics abound. Just like Tamara Rand in the 80s, pundits in the financial industry today are not beneath using the same tactic to astonish the public. The easiest way to predict the future is to make the prediction after what is being predicted has already happened, and financial experts do this all the time. But, that’s not the only trick they use. Sometimes, they actually do predict the future–but it’s a vague prediction, and we can only make sense of it after the event occurs. Perhaps the prediction is spot on, but it’s made with a lot of other predictions that don’t end up coming true. People selectively remember the prediction that comes true and forget all of those that don’t.

Whatever the case may be, financial pundits are experts at getting the public to think they are smarter than they really are. Don’t fall for the tricks! Whenever you think you’re seeing a crystal ball, what you’re really seeing is smoke and mirrors. No one ever prints a magazine cover with next year’s top performing funds. Fund and brokerage companies seek out investors they can dupe into believing in their predictions. But, in reality, they have no idea whether or not what their team of so-called experts is advising will turn out to be true.

Don’t fall for the gimmicks. If you need any guidance understanding how to sort through all the bad investment advice to find something meaningful, reach out to us for a complimentary consultation. We won’t be able to predict the future, but we will do everything we can to help you prepare for it.