Here we go again.  Dr. Gray just released his 2008 Hurricane Season prediction. 

What’s new this year?Not much.  He says we can expect greater than usual activity . . . again.  So what else is new?

As vaunted as Dr. Gray’s credentials are, I have to assert that the guru’s predictions have kept us off balance more in recent years than they’ve helped us stand up straight.  In ’05, the record-setting year we got clobbered with Katrina and Rita on the Gulf Coast, we had double the number of storms he predicted. 

Then in ’06, still bruised and batterered by the memories of the preceding season, we were chilled when his “more storms than usual” prediction came out in April.  The end result: 06 was “no big deal!” 

 “Whew,” we sighed in relief.

Along came ’07 and once again, Dr. Gray’s warning was the same: “More storms than usual,” citing the 20 or so year-long pattern of above normal activity that the studies indicated, the pattern of which we are currently in the midst.  What happened in ’07?

Pas grand chose.  (i.e., no big deal).  The innocuous Humberto formed out of nowhere and uneventfully blew by early on an Monday morning but was gone practically before we knew a hurricane was born.  

So I’ve become jaded to the pre-season hurricane predictions.  I am willing to set more store by the predictions of who’s going to win the Super Bowl or the World Series, in fact.  The irony is that Dr. Gray’s craft is based on elaborate scientific methodology, while sports predictions are based on far less exacting procedures that are not scientific at all. 

So much for science?  Or so much for man’s thinking himself smarter than he is?  I don’t know, but as I researched the topic, I found experts who agree with me. like Weather Channel meteorolo-blogger Stu Ostro.  Ostro’s assessment of the scientific predictions: “Useless.”

I agree.  So let’s just wait and see.  And we might as well pray while we’re at it, because I have a conviction that God’s got a considerably better handle on the situation than Dr. Gray!  (No disrespect intended to Dr. Gray, of course.)

PS: Thanks to the Weather Channel (www.weather.com) for the storm prediction graphic at the top.

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