In 1974, the book The Jupiter Effect by John Gribbin, PhD and Stephen Plagemann was published. It became a huge best-seller. Its argument was simple: in March of 1982 there will be an "alignment" when seven planets (six if we correctly ignore Pluto) will be lined up on the same side of the Sun. And "lined up" is used in the rough sense: they're within an arc of 95 degrees, or in other words, all within one quadrant, more or less. Somehow this was going to affect the Sun, which would then affect the Earth by the solar wind, and trigger a catastrophic earthquake along the San Andreas Fault near Los Angeles. I don't know why the solar wind wanted to single out Los Angeles and not Tokyo or Lisbon, but it clearly had sinful California in its sights, where the book sales to easily-frightened flakes, fruits, and nuts could be maximized. There were other catastrophes that would occur as well. Probably about as many people were then frightened about 1982 as are now frightened about 2012.
And of course, 1982 came and went without any of the predicted catastrophes occurring. In February of 1982, these same two authors published The Jupiter Effect Reconsidered. They didn't even wait for March to come and go before they started writing their apologia. They claimed that, even though the alignment didn't cause any major earthquakes in 1982, it was responsible for triggering the giant eruption of Mt. St. Helens in 1980 (two years before the "alignment" had occurred). "Psychics" do this all the time, re-interpreting their failed predictions as successes. If a "psychic" predicts A, which doesn't occur, but B does, the prediction will be re-interpreted to have meant B.
Surprisingly, neither Gribbin nor Plagemann has ever been tarred-and-feathered for their journalistic malfeasance. And what was Isaac Asimov thinking when he agreed to write the Foreward to this book, and sound almost like he agrees with them? Probably the same thing as the authors: big Dollar Signs.