Late on February 15, 2018, in the United States – February 16 in much of the world – the new moon will mark the end of the Year of the Rooster and the beginning of the Year of the Dog on the Chinese and other Oriental calendars. As you probably know, each year is symbolized by one of twelve animals and each of those animal years cycles through affinities to the five elements – fire, earth, metal, water and wood. This will be the Year of the Earth Dog, which occurs every 60 years.

For the past several years, I have posted predictions for what may occur in the world during the upcoming year. Rather than claiming to be any more (or less) psychic than you are, my approach has been to assume that the traditional cycles are valid. Then, by looking at what occurred in previous Dog years, we should be able to extrapolate predictions for the coming year. The posts of previous predictions are available for review, and most have been quite accurate.

The most obvious prediction that did not come about in the Year of the Rooster concerned U. S. President Trump. He is still president, even though I said that last year he may have been forced to resign for health reasons. Looking at others whose first term began with a Rooster year, it still seems likely that Mr. Trump will not serve out his full term. Going beyond that and saying it would end in the first year was, I guess, wishful thinking on my part.

Looking forward, dogs are very special animals. They are always living in the moment and are willing to offer unconditional love. They enjoy life, and they like to play as much as they like to sleep. However, they are protective and territorial, with teeth and claws they can use when they or their loved ones are threatened.

The general vibration of the coming year should be like that. Things will feel lighter and less serious than they have for the past few months. There will be noticeable periods of rest interspersed with times of action, and some of those actions have potential of turning violent.

In this piece, I will look briefly at the last two Earth Dog years, as well as the other Dog years that have occurred during the past 60 years. Then, I will spend a little more time discussing the American midterm elections and the economy. Finally, I will give a summary of how the various birth signs should fare during the year.

The last Earth Dog year of the 19th Century was 1898. The only Earth Dog year of the 20th Century was 1958. A look at what happened in those years may point to what we may expect in the first Earth Dog year of the 21st Century.

The major event of 1898 was the Spanish-American War. Only three weeks into that Dog year, the USS Maine was sunk in Havana harbor; two months later, war was declared against Spain, setting the stage for battles in Cuba and the Philippines and Spain’s surrender about 90 days after the war was declared. Aside from that war, other events that seem significant include the discovery and isolation of radium by M. and Mme. Curie and the patent for the radio being issued to Guglielmo Marconi. The roller coaster was also patented that year.

In 1958, the positive energy of the year was exemplified by things such as the hula hoop coming on the market, Alaska becoming a state and the attention given to Elvis Presley being drafted. It was largely offset, though, by a brief economic recession, the loss of many lives by fires in New York and Chicago, the deaths of Buddy Holly and Richie Valens and the Big Bopper on the “day the music died” and repeated problems with rockets, airplanes and atomic energy. Early in the year, a rocket exploded at Cape Canaveral, Florida, less than a month after the first U.S. satellite was launched; in March, an American bomber accidentally dropped an atomic bomb on South Carolina, which did not cause a nuclear explosion, though there was a detonation of conventional explosives – and that was only five weeks after a hydrogen bomb was lost in the water off Savannah, Georgia; in April, a passenger plane collided with a fighter jet in Nevada, killing all aboard; in August, the U.S. conducted nuclear tests over the South Atlantic, but then agreed to a test moratorium with the U.K. and the Soviet Union. The Cuban Revolution was nearing its climax that year

It seems, then, that nuclear energy and weapons will be spotlighted in the coming year, as will transportation and communications. Significant events should occur in the media and entertainment spheres. Important events in Cuba could garner world attention. We can also look for a new and exciting way to have fun, like the roller coaster or hula hoop or chasing a stick.

Now, I will list a few of the things that happened in the Dog years we have had since then:

In 1970: More than half a million people died in a cyclone in East Pakistan (Bangladesh); four students were killed by the National Guard at Kent State University; Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin died, and the Beatles broke up; civil wars ended in Nigeria and Yemen and started in Cambodia.

In 1982: Israel invaded southern Lebanon; we saw the short-lived Falklands War between Argentina and Britain; and Hamas massacred more than 10,000 people in Syria.

In 1994: Apartheid was finally ended in South Africa, and Nelson Mandela was elected president; there was a leadership change in North Korea, as Kim Il-sung died and Kim Jung-il became head of the government; the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) was established; and an American gunman killed 29 people in Israel, and wounded 125 more.

In 2006: The Nepalese civil war ended; Saddam Hussein was executed; there were terrorist bombings in Mumbai and a war in Lebanon; the Yangtze River Dolphin became extinct.

Obviously, that list is not exhaustive. Looking at those items, and others, here are some of the things we may see in this coming Dog year:

– The countries with the most stable governments and stable economic growth will be China and Russia.

– The Middle East will remain unstable and violent.

– There will be significant changes in leadership of various countries. Besides the ascendancy of Kim Jung-il in North Korea and the election of Nelson Mandela in South Africa, Dog Years have also seen Charles DeGaulle becoming president of France; the death of Nasser in Egypt and Anwar Sadat coming into power; the death of Brezhnev in Russia and the ascendancy of Yuri Andropov; and the execution of Saddam Hussein, ending his rule in Iraq.

– In the U.S. and Canada, there will be volatility in the political and economic areas; and there will be more than the usual number of tornadoes in the U.S.

– I decided last year not to predict gun violence any more, because it had become almost commonplace. Nevertheless, I am mentioning it this year, because, unfortunately, it could be an even worse year than normal.

North Korea will continue to expand its military forces, but will try to establish smoother international relations. The situation may become confused because of political scandals in South Korea.

– It should be another very HOT year, globally.

– The new moon that begins the Year of the Dog will also bring a partial solar eclipse over parts of South America and Antarctica. Therefore, the southern hemisphere will become important for the first part of this year.

Now, let us look at what can be expected from midterm elections in the U.S.


It has been two years since the general elections in the U.S. That means that even though there is not going to be a presidential election, we will see the election of all members of the House of Representatives, about 1/3 of the members of the Senate, and several state governors.

In Dog years, these midterm elections have usually been bad news for the political party of the president. If a Republican was in the White House, Democrats did well; and if a Democrat was president, the Republicans did well.

In 1958, Dwight Eisenhower, a Republican, was president. The country was trying to recover from a recession, and in that year’s elections, the Democrats gained 48 seats in the House and 13 in the Senate, as well as seven more governorships.

There was also a Republican president, Richard Nixon, in 1970, and the Democrats again did well in the midterm elections. They gained 12 seats in the House, though they lost one in the Senate. The Democrats did especially well in state elections where they added 11 more governorships.

In 1982, there was again a Republican president, Ronald Reagan, and that year the Democrats had more modest gains – picking up 26 seats in the House, with no change in the Senate. The Democrats also gained seven governorships that year.

Finally, there was a Democrat, Bill Clinton, in the White House in 1994, and the Republicans did exceptionally well in the midterm elections. They gained 54 seats in the House and eight seats in the Senate, as well as winning 10 additional governorships.

In 2006, when Republican George W. Bush was president, the midterm elections brought very little change. The Republicans actually gained eight seats in the House and two in the Senate, but the Democrats gained six governorships.

It seems, then, that the Democrats should do quite well in this year’s elections. There is a very real possibility that they will gain a majority in both houses of Congress. It is more likely, though, that the Democrats will come away with a majority of seats in the Senate while the Republicans maintain a slight majority in the House.  Will the Russians try to influence these elections?  Probably.

Finally, let us look at what to expect with regard to the economy, focusing on the United States.


Again, this discussion will start with a look at the economy in the recent Dog years. There is good news because the stock market has risen in every one of those years.

A recession began in the U.S. in about October or November of 1957. It was an inflationary recession and the Federal Reserve Board reacted by significantly lowering the discount rate. That tactic worked and by summer of 1958, the inflation rate, which had been about 3-1/2% had dropped to barely 1%. For the year, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) gained 33 points. That doesn’t seem like much today, but back then the Average was only at about 500, so there was almost a 7% gain.

In 1970, the rate of inflation was around 6% and rising – much higher than it had been in the recent past. The stock market was in the middle of a long decline that lasted from 1965 to 1982. Nevertheless, the DJIA was able to eke out a small 38 point gain for the year.

Inflation continued to grow for several years, and was higher than 14% by 1980. It then began to decline, but was volatile. In 1982, the rate varied between 3.5% and 7.1% The stock market decline that had begun in 1965-66 continued for the first half of the year. It reached the bottom and started back up during the summer of 1982, gaining 171 points, or a little over 15% for the year. After reaching bottom, the DJIA began to mark a significant uptrend that continues today.

Although that uptrend was in place, 1994 was only slightly positive, with the DJIA rising only 80 points. The rate of inflation stayed below 3% all year.

The uptrend then resumed and 2006 was a very good year (ahead of some bad times the following year, but we will leave that discussion until next year). The DJIA gained more than 1,700 points, and inflation was pretty stable, ranging from 2% to 4.1%.

For the coming year, inflation should remain low, staying under 3%. The stock market should be more volatile than it has been during the past few years. During the first few months of this Dog Year, the price trend will be negative, and some may even say that the uptrend has ended. However, by summer prices should once again turn positive for most of the rest of the year. In the end, there should be a small gain this year – to perhaps 27,000 for the DJIA.


Earlier, it was said that the coming year will seem lighter and less serious than in the recent past, and most of what has been said since then has not seemed light or frivolous. Dogs, however, are not so concerned with a macro view of our world. They are individuals who are here to teach and help individual humans. Therefore, it is really more of a personal feeling that things are getting better that many will experience. Here is a summary of the general thoughts about how individuals born under the various signs will relate to this year of the Earth Dog. You will see that relations with others are highlighted for many signs, because that is what dogs like:

Dog: They say it’s a dog eat dog world. That may be so; people born in Dog years generally have a rough time of it in other Dog years. Things feel unstable to them. Dogs should avoid speculation and gambling, and it is not a good year for romance or other personal relationships. They may also experienced digestive problems – who knows what dogs will eat.

Pig: This will be a good year for Pigs, with gains of all kinds coming from their relationship with others. This does not necessarily mean that only money will come to them. Sometimes it is better to gain friends, peace of mind and smiles from strangers, and Pigs know that. Their health should be good all year, but they may find it necessary to deal with health issues of their family members.

Rat: This is also a good year for Rats. They will generally get along well with others, except for a few serious arguments which could develop. Rats should try to take life calmly and avoid conflict. They should experience mostly good health, but may be prone to accidents and bleeding.

Ox or Buffalo; This is not a bad year for the Ox, but it is a time to be cautious. The Ox should be patient and conservative in economic matters and in the way others are treated. Nevertheless, if the opportunity is presented, this could be a good year to change jobs. If the Ox suffers any health problems, they will probably affect the digestive system or the back and neck.

Tiger: Tigers will find this a very pleasant and prosperous year, especially in career matters. They can accumulate wealth, but only through their work or business. Windfalls should not be expected. Tigers may have problems with romance or other personal relationships because their time is so consumed by work. Tigers should be healthy this year, but they may be affected by health problems of family members.

Rabbit or Cat: You would think that the way dogs love to chase rabbits, this year could be one in which to exercise caution. That is a good idea, though almost everything will be greatly improved from the experiences of the last couple of years. Rabbits could see a significant rise in wealth and reputation, coming mostly through career and personal contacts. There is a possibility of heart or liver problems, but the Rabbit’s health should be mostly good. It is also a good year to get married.

Dragon: I am not sure how well dogs and dragons get along here in the physical world, but a Dog year is usually not very good for a Dragon. It is quite possible to lose wealth, and the only way to acquire any money or possessions is through hard, hard work. The Dragon will almost certainly experience loss if he tries gambling or playing the stock market. On top of everything else, the Dragon could suffer from various illness and be accident-prone.

Snake: In most respects, this will be a good year for Snakes. Money and abundance will come easily to those who do not act foolishly. It could be a good year to increase income by changing jobs. The Snake will get along well with others, even to the point that this is a good year to marry. The Snake may be a bit accident-prone, but will find he is otherwise healthy.

Horse: This is generally a good year for Horses, especially when it comes to accumulating wealth. However, money that comes in easily can also be spent easily; so Horses should be frugal and watch their expenses. People skills and relationships are also quite good this year. A Horse would do quite well in work involving real estate and investments or something spiritual. There is a possibility of accidents and of colorectal or gynecological issues, but the Horse will generally be in good health.

Sheep: The Sheep should focus on advancing his career, because his income will be directly related to his level of authority. The Sheep may as well have that career focus because this is not a good year for romance or personal relationships or health.

Monkey: Although this year will not be a time of good luck, Monkeys may improve their situation by being resourceful – and that may include moving, changing jobs or traveling. Those things might occur incident to a job promotion or change of setting that could lead to increased income in the future. The Monkey should try to avoid arguments; this is not a year when those can be won. Monkeys may not develop serious health problems, but many minor ailments could develop.

Rooster: The Rooster should use this year for spiritual development since there will not be good luck in material matters. Roosters should accept what stable income is available and not spend any money on gambling or playing the stock market. It could be a good year for changing positions at work, but not for taking on anything risky. Roosters will catch more colds and flu-like illnesses than usual, and should watch for other minor ailments.

Take these thoughts for what they are worth. If anything can be changed, it is the future. The influence of the various astrological signs is just that – influence. What actually happens depends on what you do and what I do.

For now, Gong xi fa cai!, as they say in Mandarin. Happy New Year!

4 thoughts on “YEAR OF THE DOG – 2018

  1. Well done, Louis – and what a lot of research is behind what you’ve written! I’m in awe. I look forward to regime change, particularly in the House and Senate, and concur that it will be another hot year for global climate, both as far as temperature and energy in the atmosphere goes.

    Trump as President is problematic, same as he ever was. If he stays – what a discouraging development. If he goes and the office devolves to Mike Pence, it may prove to be just that, a devolvement – a transfer of power to an even lower level. Pence is an old-school party-liner, and his straight-man puppet qualifications for the dark side of the 1% are far better then Trump’s, or even GW Bush’s. He’s mastered the oil and grease of politics well and his straight-faced serious facade is just too slick for any kind of substance to cling to what he says.

    Well, we will hope for the best and brace for the worst, as always. In any event, Gung Hay Fat Choy to all in the year to come, and especially to you and yours, Louis. Take care.

    • From Supertramp: They will “be calling you a radical, liberal, fanatical criminal.” The comments on American leadership are pretty straightforward,and it is clear what you think about our current (fake) leadership. With the Chinese, though, you have been more subtle – ignoring the government-countenanced Mandarin in favor of Cantonese. I support that radical approach.

      • I have always supported a radical approach to practically everything simply because the conventional includes too many mistakes we should have learned from when they were made in the past. Sadly, the current administration is a whopper.

        I wish I could own the intention of subtlety you so graciously ascribe to my statement, but actually my intention was simply to be inclusive and so I used the Cantonese form.

        I will however take credit for being yet again the author of something simple which went out into the world and mysteriously and serendipitously took on a fuller meaning when another perspective was applied to it – and then returned to me and expanded my own view. That stuff happens to most of the things I write.

        I guess it’s a good thing. It reminds me of how much I don’t know, you know? Or have forgotten in this case. I did feel good about having known of the “official language” at one time, and that was gratifying… Being human is so funny, ain’t it?

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