'Overconfident' | 

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar tops New York Times worst 2021 predictions list

The opinion piece compiles ten of the 'worst predictions made about the year by overconfident people from many walks of life'
Leo Varadkar

Leo Varadkar

Neasa Cumiskey

Leo Varadkar has topped the New York Times’ Worst Predictions About 2021 list.

The opinion piece, written by economics and business columnist Peter Coy, compiles ten of the “worst predictions made about the year by overconfident people from many walks of life,” including Donald Trump and Citibank analyst Tom Fitzgerald.

But taking the top spot is Tánaiste Leo Varadkar, who predicted that we would see the back end of the pandemic in 2021 during an interview in December 2020 after Margaret Keenan received the first Covid vaccine outside of clinical trials.

The prediction reads: “With the vaccine, with mass testing and with the knowledge of how to prevent and treat this virus, I think the pandemic will end in 2021.”

Mr Coy explained his reasoning behind placing the former Taoiseach at the top of the list, writing: “Prime Minister Leo Varadkar of Ireland said this in an interview on Dec. 9, 2020, daring to predict the course of a pandemic that has flummoxed the experts repeatedly.

“To his credit, he did qualify his prediction with ‘I think.’”

Second on the list is a quote from an article in Egypt Today about the Suez Canal made before the Ever Given container ship got stuck in the canal for six days in March 2021.

The comments, made prematurely in September 2020, read: “With improved equipment, it is expected that there will also be improved and safer navigation along the canal.”

Former US President Donald Trump made the fourth worst prediction about 2021, according to the article.

Speaking in September 2020 at a briefing about California’s wildfires, he said: “It’ll start getting cooler. You just — you just watch.”

Mr Coy commented: “Narrowly speaking, this prediction may have been correct. Broadly speaking, though, for Trump to say the world will ‘start getting cooler’ is quite a stretch.”

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