Last week a couple of dubious "news" sites reported on a prediction made by a blind mystic named Baba Vanga. The claim was that she had amazing accuracy, and predicted a number of events, including the election of Barack Obama, and now, that Donald Trump would cause World War III!
The claims are all the more amazing because Baba Vanga has been dead for over 20 years.
Baba Vanga (who died in 1996) is still hugely famous in Bulgaria, and was visited throughout her life by dignitaries seeking predictions, even in the old Soviet days (legend has it even Leonid Brezhnev came to see her). Among her predictions, which made her more famous in the West a few years back, was the claim that the 44th President of the United States would be black. This was long before anyone knew what an "Obama" was!
Now news is being spread on social media that Vanga had predicted 9/11, the Muslim migration into Europe in 2016, the Brexit referendum, and that Donald Trump would bring down the United States and start a Nuclear War.
That all seems pretty amazing at first glance. But actually, Baba Vanga is not a very impressive psychic. In fact, this is an example of what everyone could agree is "fake news". And the people writing the story know it! Some of the exact same media websites were claiming Baba Vanga predicted that Obama would be the last president, just a few months ago! In November, they said the US would collapse into civil war before Trump took office.
So what did Baba Vanga really say? She actually did predict that the 44th President would be black. But she also claimed that an economic crisis would lead to a civil war in the United States during his presidency. She didn't really predict anything about Trump, because she claimed the black president would be the last President.
As for WWIII, she did predict it would happen, but claimed it would happen between 2010-2014. She did make a prophecy that could maybe be understood as being about 9/11, but it was just that "steel birds" would cause the "fall of Americans". That could just as easily have been about some kind of conventional air attack. And she didn't so much predict the Muslim migration as she did a Turkish invasion.
And then there's all the stuff she got totally wrong. You see, most "psychics" and "prophets" work by scatter-shot: they predict a crapload of stuff, most of which turns out to be totally wrong. Then they and their followers spin it to focus on the few things they lucked out on and got right. So, a lot like weathermen, climate alarmists, economists, and Nate Silver.
And Baba Vanga got a ton of stuff wrong. Besides the 2010-2014 World War that never happened, she claimed in the 1970s that the Soviet Union, and not the U.S., would become the world's only superpower. She not only predicted a literal invasion of Europe, she also predicted that in 2016 chemical weapons would be used in the war that would "end Europe", after most of Europe's population would already be gone from nuclear fallout of WWIII. She claimed that by 2014, most people on Earth would have skin cancer from nuclear fallout. She even made a wrong prediction about the 1994 world cup.
Those aren't small things to get wrong (well, maybe the World Cup one was). You can't claim to be a great prophet if you just make a tiny mistake like predicting billions of deaths.
Baba Vanga was a fraud. One that just keeps getting selectively quoted by people with different modern agendas. Back in 2008 it was for fear-mongering about Obama. Now it's for fear-mongering about Donald Trump. I keep thinking that after seeing a decade of dumb articles about this woman's predictions that turn out to be wrong, people would smarten up and stop believing it (and sharing said stupid articles on Facebook). Sadly, I just keep underestimating the idiocy of the average reader.