2002: The Year Ahead

When forecasting trends, sometimes looking backward is the best way to look ahead. TIME's James O. Jackson examines the perils of prediction

Attempting to foretell the future is always a risky business. Like generals who prepare for the next war by planning for the last one, prognosticators usually look ahead on the basis of what has already happened. In the Pentagon last year, military planners immersed themselves in missile-defense systems to thwart a cold-war-era nuclear attack but failed to prepare for the civilian airliners that were transformed into guided missiles on Sept. 11. Brokers in the World Trade...

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