Early British History

The Battle of Hastings in 1066 was an important turning point in British history, and thus also in American history.  It was discussed in this blog a long time ago pointing out that the split between the”Red States” and “Blue States” extends back to the Norman Invasion and the Battle of Hastings.

With the Norman Invasion, French royalty who believed that they were the proper inheritors of the British crown invaded England and the Norman prince William battled with the current ruler of England, Harold Godwinsson.  So we had a Anglo-Saxon army of traditional English peoples battling the invading army of the French-Normans.  These two groups had two different mindsets that influenced English, and thus American, thought down through the ages, now almost 1000 years.

The Normans were philosophically descended from the Romans and their idea of a Republic, that is to say representative democracy, and also of course the Catholic Church. The defenders, though Christian (and thus Catholic) at the time, were descended from the paganism of the early English and Scandinavians, who had invaded England over the last few centuries.  These people were believers of Democracy, which is to say direct democracy.  See the article at the link for more details.  The democracy of the Anglo-Saxons is today more visible in the town democracy of New England, which was originally settled by the descendants of the traditional English (for more details see Albion’s Seed by David Hackett Fischer) whereas the national government of America runs on a republican form of government which was represented by the French Normans. Most of the early government was designed by politicians from Virginia, who were descended from the Royalists who settled in the states and were from the Cavilers in England, descendants of the French Normans.



Battle of Hastings


Though the battle of Hastings lasted all day, we do have a time for when it started: 9 am.  Here is that chart.  The most prominent feature is Saturn at the Midheaven — a little over one degree away.  While Saturn is often associated with bad outcomes, and this was certainly true for the defenders under Harold, Saturn more particularly refers to the long lasting implications of this battle — it influenced British history for the next millennium.  Neptune, which of course was unknown at the time, is placed on the Descendant: Things coming from outside the immediate environment — that is from France on the other side of the English Channel — were not seen clearly.  Mars is square Saturn and the Midheaven, certainly appropriate to a battle whose result would influence England and the world for a long time to come.  Also note the formation involving Moon, Midheaven, Saturn, Sun, Venus, Mercury, and Mars, five of the seven planets known at the time.  If we look at the fourth harmonic chart of this event, it is more clear.  Saturn, Mars, Midheaven are opposite Sun, Moon (it was a last quarter Moon) with Venus loosely conjoined.  This was a major event involving battle and, with the connection to the two lights — the Sun and Moon — this event was quite important.



Battle of Hastings Harmonic 4


William founded a dynasty of kings.  His granddaughter, Matilda, married Geoffrey, Count of Anjou, who liked to wear as his personal symbol a bit of flowering broom, whose Latin name was Planta genista.  Their son became king Henry II, the first of a long line of Plantagenet kings.  That dynasty lasted until it ended at a battle at Bosworth Field, and the victor became Henry VII, the first Tudor king, in 1485, who defeated the notorious Richard III.  In the years before that the English rulers were engaged in a civil war between two families of the Plantagenets in what was called the War of the Roses, a popular theme in the plays of Shakespeare.

Another important event of early British history is called “Murder in the Cathedral” — the killing of Thomas Becket, the Archbishop of Canterbury, by forces loyal to King Henry II. There was a movie made about this event called (big surprise) Becket, staring Richard Burton in the title role, released in 1964, and a poem/drama by T. S. Ellot called “Murder in the Cathedral” written in 1935.  We have an approximate time for this murder: Thomas had just gone to vespers, which is approximately at 6:30 in the evening, when he was killed.  Four knights thought the King wanted Thomas killed, though perhaps they misunderstood what the King said.  As a result all four were excommunicated.



Killing Thomas Becket

Several things stand out: Mars conjunct Jupiter — plenty of violence.  Moon opposite Uranus: Unexpected events at this time.  The Moon moves one degree in two hours so the exact opposition would take place two hours later.  Of course the time of this event is only approximate, since all we know is that the Archbishop was at vespers when the murder occurred.  Mercury conjunct Neptune: confused thoughts.  And Venus on the Descendant: Venus (justice) was setting and it would be below the horizon in about 10 minutes.

Henry had two sons who became kings.  One, Richard I who was known as Lionheart, spent most of his time away from home fighting in Crusades to drive the Muslims from the Holy Land.  His brother was John, the king after Richard died.  John upset his aristocratic barons and they forced him to sign the Magna Carta (Great Charter) giving them more rights.  This was famously signed in the fields of Runnymede – a meadow near the Thames — near Leicestershire, on June 15, 1215.  I haven’t been able to find an exact time, but noon is a reasonable guess.  The Magna Carta is considered the first written constitution, and has served as the inspiration to many in the time since it was written, even though like most good ideas there were many, many times when its promises were not observed.  Still, it is an important landmark.


Magna Carta



In this chart we see Sun conjunct Venus — justice on this day — conjunct the Midheaven, not surprising since it is a noon chart.  This conjunction is square Uranus, the planet of change and of revolution, and this document was that.  There is a quincunx, 150 degrees  which indicates a difference between the Sun — King John — and the people, in this case the barons, which needs adjustment.  This quincunx is close, 2 minutes from exact.  Note that the Sun is at 0 Cancer, the first day of Summer.  Since this was the Julian calendar and not the Gregorian calendar that is used today, thee was a bit of slippage between the seasons and the calendar.



Battle of Bosworth Field


Finally, here is a chart for the battle that ended the Plantagenet reign, and ushered in the Tudor dynasty.  The bones of Richard III were recently found in a car park (ie, parking lot) in England to much notice.  The Battle of Bosworth Field is historically very important in England.  This is the most unimpressive chart I have seen of an event, especially one of so much import. The only thing of note is a recent Jupiter-Saturn conjunction, which indicates the beginning of a twenty-year period of a new ruler.  This is all true but not very impressive.

But at a large scale, this year – 1485 — is important.  In November of that year, the planets were bunched as closely as they had been in 500 years (as discussed previously).  This indicated the end of the previous 500 year cycle, and the beginning of the next one, the one I call the 500 Year Party, which ended in 1982.  And indeed, the reign of Henry VII is considered the beginning of the English Renaissance.


Before The Civil War

Currently we have Neptune in an opening square to the Ascendant of the United States and a trine between Neptune and the US Sun.  Because of the slow passage of Neptune, this pattern was repeated last before Neptune was discovered, in 1853 and 1854.  Thus I thought it would be interesting to look at that period in American history.




In the period 2016 through 2018 we have transiting Neptune making an opening square the the US Ascendant, as has been discussed before, and also a trine to the US Sun.  These two important Neptune transits go on for several years.  The first chart shows a position within this period in which you can see both the square to the Ascendant — red line — and the trine to the Sun — blue line.  Since the square is a fourth harmonic aspect and the trine is a third harmonic aspect, the harmonic which shows both aspects as a conjunction is the twelfth harmonic: 12 = 3X4.  So here is a twelfth harmonic graphical ephemeris allowing one to see when both aspects are coming into orb, exact, and leaving orb.  Neptune first approaches square to the Ascendant in late spring of 2016 — black arrow — and then the trine with the Sun finally ceases in early 2019 — red arrow.  So for about three and a half years the United States is strongly Neptunian.




But this combination of aspects has happened once before in the history of the United States, that is, after its birth, and that was in the period 1853 and 1854.  The third chart is a wheel showing when both aspects were within orb, and the fourth chart is a graphical ephemeris, like the previous one, showing when Neptune approaches the opening square with the Ascendant — black arrow — until when the final trine with the Sun took place at the end of 1854 — red arrow.  This period was shorter than the current one, but many important things did happen




In 1850, under a Uranus-Pluto conjunction, the South thought about leaving the Union, but in a vote of Southern states, only one state, South Carolina, voted for succession, so the matter was dropped for the time being.  But 1850 did see the Fugitive Slave Act (part of the Compromise of 1850) passed, which required northerners to return slaves that had escaped to their rightful “owners”.  This act was not very popular in many Northern cities, and there was widespread refusal to obey its demands.



Before the Civil War


Then in 1854 the Kansas-Nebraska Act was passed, shepherded by Stephen Douglas who would become famous for his debates with Whig politician Abraham Lincoln, whom he ran against in the election of 1860.  To understand the full import of this act, we will have to explore the history of Congress’s dealings with slavery, which was always a controversial subject in America,

In 1820 Congress passed the Missouri Compromise,  which was suppose to settle the issue of slavery in the country.  Missouri was going to enter the nation as a slave state, thus upsetting the balance of slave and free states in the country.  To avoid this, Maine was broken off from Massachusetts and thus became a free state at the same time that Missouri became a slave state, maintaining the balance.  Furthermore, when other states were made from the vast territory that was the Louisiana Purchase, all states north of the southern border of Missouri (expect obviously Missouri) were to be free states and those south of that border would be slave states.


Missouri Compromise


The chart, above,  for the day the Missouri Compromise was passed, is very interesting. There is a conjunction between Uranus and Neptune, the last one before 1990, opposite the US Venus and square Pluto, which sits on the IC of the United States.  That Pluto position — the conjunction with the IC was yet to happen — indicates  that deep changes to the society of the US were coming in the near future.  This period saw a Venus return for the United States (transiting Venus returns to its natal position), and with that strong opposition, Justice seemed to be in the ascendancy.  This was an illusion but it would takes several decades for this to become clear.

This compromise had lasted for a third of a century, but now that Kansas and Nebraska were about to enter the country, and both of the states were clearly north of the southern border of Missouri and so they should be free states, Douglas, among others, wanted popular sovereignty to be in effect.  This allowed each state to determine its own policies of slavery.  This popular sovereignty passed in the Kansas-Nebraska Act, thus killing the Missouri Compromise and, though it was not initially clear, setting the final stage for the Civil War, which was to come in another seven years.

There were many unintended consequences of this Act.  Because of the repeal of the Missouri Compromise, more and more people became disgusted and disillusioned with slavery and expressed their increasing unhappiness.  Many slave owners from Missouri rushed into Kansas hoping to swell the vote in favor of slavery in that state.  These people were called border ruffians or pukes, and were seen as interlopers by the people who already lived in the Kansas territory.  There were many skirmishes been the pro and anti slavery citizens of Kansas, leading to what has been called “Bleeding Kansas”.  An important preacher from Brooklyn, Henry Ward Beecher (brother of Harriet Beecher Stowe, whose novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin had been published in 1852) sent boxes of what were called Beecher’s Bibles and were actually rifles to Kansas that helped with the bleeding.  A man by the name of John Brown killed five pro-slavery people in Kansas in 1856, before his more famous attack on Harper’s Ferry.  The Whig Party, that had formed as a response to Andrew Jackson, essentially disappeared with the passage of the Kansas Nebraska Act, and anti-slavery Whigs joined with members of the Free Soil Party to form the Republican Party in 1954, thus ending what is called the Second Party System and replacing it with the Third Party System — Republicans and Democrats — which the country still has.  So we can see that the passage of this piece of legislation, considered so fine at the time, on hindsight can be seen as one of the final acts that lead directly to the Civil War.  The Missouri Compromise had settled the waters of the slavery antislavery controversy for awhile, but as an elderly Thomas Jefferson said at the time, this was as a fire bell in the night.  It just took forty years for the fire to be acknowledged.

In summary, this period with the multiple Neptune transits for the United States saw the final disillusionment with the status quo opinion that it was possible to compromise with the slave-owning republic that was south of the Mason-Dixon line, but expanding.  This compromise had been in effect for a third of a century, but it was finally rapidly collapsing.  The end, as Neptune transited opposite the MC of the US and Uranus transited opposite the Ascendant of the US, would not be long in coming.

Odds And Ends

I was asked to look at the Cancer Ingress chart for a Solstice potluck I attended recently.  I drew the chart for when the Sun is at 0 Cancer and thus when the first instant of Summer, in the Northern hemisphere, officially starts.  The chart’s location is Washington, D.C. because it is the capital of the nation.  I did not know what to expect, but the chart only emphasized what we have seen before, and so I will refer you to previous entries.  In this chart the most prominent planet near an angle (Ascendant, Midheaven, etc) is Neptune rising and just a few degrees below the Ascendant and in the first house.  The second most obvious is Saturn in the tenth house and a few degrees from the Midheaven.  If one were born in, say, Jamaica, New York, Saturn would be even closer to the Midheaven.  As has been talked about before Neptune indicates that the next half year, at least, will be very Neptunian; it is as if vaseline were spread over America’s perception of the world, even more so now than usually.  This manifests itself most clearly in the Russiagate scandal, which polls show is greatly favored by politicians and the mass media, whereas the general public believes there is really nothing there and wishes that politicians would show interest in things like health care and the lack of good-paying jobs.  From a distance, it appears that America has gone crazy.




Saturn at the top of the chart is simply an indication that things will not go smoothly in the public arena, and the the world will see the country as somewhat hidebound (insert your favorite Saturn world here).  For a person born in Jamaica the next six months will only be really bad, with everyone attacking him,  as they have been doing since  even before the election.

The tightest aspect is a trine between Pluto and the Moon.  For this aspect, Ebertin says “striving for power” to which one can only add “well, duh!!”.  We already see jockeying for the 2018 midterm elections, of which Russiagate is the Democratic attempt to win back a populace increasingly turned off to their love of the elites.

There was some excitement recently over the fiftieth anniversary — fiftieths are always a big deal, as are a hundred year anniversary — of the release of the Beatles album Sargent Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, which is considered a landmark, for among other things the year it was released — 1967 — the so-called Summer of Love in San Francisco. Since I had already looked at the release of the Bob Dylan album Slow Train Coming I knew how to handle album releases.  It turns out that this album was released on two separate dates, one in England and later one in the United States.



Sargent Pepper released USA


For the release date in the United States, drawn at 12 noon, we have Sun at the MC and the Uranus-Pluto conjunction, which so defines the Sixties, at the Ascendant and thus loosely square the Sun for the day of the release.  Since this album was an epitome of Sixties-culture, the fact that the Sun was in aspect to that conjunction on this day is only appropriate.  Venus is conjunct Jupiter, suggesting good (sweet) music.  On that day the transiting Moon went over Saturn, suggesting that there were some disappointments in the future (see for example the Manson murders (supposedly he rallied his “troops” by using a Beatles song from a later album) and the concert at the Altamont Speedway, for starters) .



Sargent Pepper released in USA


For these transits within the USA chart, we see that that Uranus Pluto conjunction is right on the natal Neptune and straddling it.  Neptune reminds one of the mystical experience that that era promised and sometimes delivered, and also drugs, which featured prominently in the album in question.  We already saw that Moon-Saturn transiting conjunction, but here the transiting Mars is exactly on Saturn of the United States.; this Mars-Saturn combination has been described as “Driving with the brakes on” but of course nobody realized that at the time.  Also interesting is that the Sun for the day is exactly on the Descendant of the United States.  It was an important day that people would recognize and remember, but also symbolically the Sun was setting.  That June also was the fabled “Summer of Love” where so many young people would be going to San Francisco (with or without, as the popular song of that summer had it, flowers in their hair). Fifty years is a long time ago.



Sargent Pepper released in UK


The album was released in Great Britain on May 26, and I used a natal chart for the United Kingdom for 1801 with the union of Britain and Ireland as a background for the transits of the day.  In this chart we see a Jupiter return for the United Kingdom, and certainly the Beatles, and the other bands of the “British Invasion” were good for the bottom line of the country.  England was swingin’ in the Sixties!  Transiting Venus is conjunct the Moon of the UK — music for the masses indeed.  But Saturn is also prominent in this chart, being just above the Descendant.  This suggest much the same as the prominence of Saturn in the US charts mentioned above.

But there is another fiftieth anniversary which this summer sees that is not discussed as much, that is of the shooting of a US ship Liberty by the Israelis less than a week after this album was released in the Sates.  The USS Liberty was a research ship for the US Navy, and it was attacked by Israeli Air Force planes and torpedo boats.  All told, 34 sailors were killed, 171 injured, and the ship was damaged considerably.  This incident has never been adequately explained, and there were several “conspiracy theories” that rose up about it.  In the wake of the 50th anniversary, Haaretz, often considered the most important newspaper in Israel, published a major article investigating the incident, something that American newspapers shy away from.  Men on the Israeli ship realized at the time that they were about to fire an an American vessel, but the order was to continue firing at the Liberty.  US troops that were in the water were also fired upon. Later Israel apologized and United States President Lyndon Johnson accepted their apology and the matter was let drop.




USS Liberty  Fired Upon

In the chart for the event, which took place about 25 miles northwest of the Egyptian city of Arish, just after a New Moon, where the Moon was less than three degrees beyond the Sun, about six hours after the exact New Moon.  And of course we see the signature Uranus-Pluto conjunction in the twelfth house.  Mars in the first house is opposite Saturn, and indeed it was a martial adventure, with Mars Saturn problems since there has been a Saturnian coverup of this event in the 50 years since.  Jupiter and Venus were closely conjunct — less than one degree — at the beginning of Leo, and semisquare the New Moon, but this event did not bring any of the promises of Venus-Jupiter (great beneficence) to the sailors on the Liberty, but it did for the Israel, since they escaped with only an apology for what could have been an international incident: an ally killing many US troops in a a totally unprovoked attack.



The chart for the transits to the USA chart for this instant are not that much different than for the release of Sargent Pepper less than a week before, except that the Moon and Sun have moved during the interval.  The New Moon is now on the USA Mars — gunfire, violence — and the meaning should be clear as regards this incident.


Yet More Neptune

Neptune has pride of place in the birth chart of the United States.  It is conjunct the Midheaven of the US (a wide conjunction, 8.5 degrees) and is the most elevated planet in the chart.  This prominence of Neptune is very visible in the United States, and even manifests itself in US currency.  This placement of Neptune is articulated by the term “American Dream” and displays itself in the concept of Manifest Destiny, a term popularized in the 1840s and illustrated by this famous painting.  manifest-destiny-3-638

America has been the birth place to many religions and in fact there is a region of Western New York State which is called the Burned-Over District (details are in Whitney Cross’s book The Burned Over District first published in 1950) where many religions erupted, including Mormonism, seemingly after a controversy involving the death of a Mason and the birth of the first third party in America.  People new to America are amazed at the strength of religion in the society.  Imagine the extreme difficultly of a Non-believer running for any public office, and compare this to any European nation, most especially France.  And look at the back of a one dollar bill.  There you will see an eye on top of a pyramid, a physical representation of the position of Neptune in the birth chart of the United States.  That position was determined in 1935, and was suggested by then Secretary of Agriculture Henry Wallace, who probably had more knowledge of esoteric symbols than any other government official since, though of course the founders of this country were mostly Masons, and I am told the amount of esoteric symbolism to be found in Washington, DC is considerable.  This eye on the pyramid was the reverse of the Great Seal of the United States which originated back from the birth of the country.

As has been talked about before the United States is currently having a Neptune transit, with Neptune square the Ascendant of the United States. This has manifested itself in many ways, but two stand out as being featured prominently in the news media, and demonstrating once again that the media is also under Neptune’s influence.  In general, people are now disillusioned with the charade of politics as usual, and this plays out in many ways. The key word is disillusioned, a word of Neptune.



Neptune Square US Ascendant

Neptune’s hard transits, since Neptune is a slow moving outer planet, are relatively rare in the history of the country.  What we are seeing now is an opening square of Neptune to the Ascendant.  As can be see in this graphical ephemeris, it was first exact in early summer of 2016 (black arrow), was then exact in March of 2017 and will make its final passes of an exact square at the end of this year and the beginning of the next year.


Neptune Conjunct US Ascendant


The previous conjunction was exact in 1975 and 1976, forty years ago.  In the United States this saw a rise of born-again Christians (“Jesus People”) — at this time my astrology teacher became a “Jew for Jesus” and threw away all her astrology book.,  It seemed to be a time when many who had believed in political change in the Sixties gave up on that idea and turned to spiritual pursuits.  While it is difficult to chose an exact chart for this event, a milestone is the release of Bob Dylan’s first Christian album Slow Train Coming on August 20, 1979.  Though this was some years after the exact conjunction, it astounded many Dylan fans at the time since he was not known as a Christian (but rather into his Jewish heritage) even though such a song as “I Dreamed I Saw St. Augustine” from the album John Wesley Harding may have suggested differently (though of course that album was released after his supposedly almost fatal motorcycle accident and showed a distinct change from what had gone before). But the album was also surprising because his previous album, Street Legal, contained a number of reference to Tarot (“between the King and Queen of Swords”) and other esoteric matters.


slow_train_coming_usa                                         slow_train_coming


In the chart for the release of this album, seen as transits to the United States chart (left), Neptune is past the Ascendant but still close and in the First House.  What stands out is the triple conjunction of Sun, Venus, and Jupiter in Leo opposite the Moon of the US.  That day represents some type of culmination of trends in America, and the beginning of something new.  As we can see from the event chart for the release (right), Uranus was midway between Neptune and Pluto; This period in history represented the beginning of the Rise of Neoliberalism, discussed at length elsewhere in his blog, in the world whose effects have become obvious by now, almost forty years later.  It was indeed the beginning of a new trend.



Neptune Closing Square to US Ascendant


The closing square of Neptune to the Ascendant was in 1933 though 1935, the depths of the Great Depression when Franklin Roosevelt had just taken office.  Father Coughlin, a Catholic priest who used the radio to reach a large audience, posed a challenge to Roosevelt whom he first supported; Coughlin later became anti-semitic and began to support some policies of Fascist leaders.  Huey Long, the governor of Louisiana, was another early supporter of Roosevelt who split with FDR and offered a “Share our Wealth” program that was more radical than the new Deal of FDR.  He was associated with Father Coughlin and was assassinated in the middle of this transit.  And of course the Communist Party of the USA saw much gain in its membership as people saw the problems with capitalism.  In all these cases, and others, people were all too clearly disillusioned –a Neptunian word — with capitalism.  In the graphical ephemeris for this period we can see the squares of Neptune to the US Ascendant; the first exact square is shown by the black arrow.



Neptune Square US Sun


Neptune transits are also very prominent to the United States chart during the bout of McCarthyism in the late Forties and early Fifties.  Neptune was on the MC of the US during the first half of that decade, as the country entered and fought World War II. Neptune then was prominent in the US tenth house at the end of the war and shortly thereafter.  Then, as shown in the graphical ephemeris above, Neptune was square the Sun of the United States starting at the beginning of 1948 (black arrow shows first exact square) and the last exact square was in late 1949, though the effects continued into 1950.  As mentioned in the above link, the late Forties was the period when the Cold War was really started.  Truman was laying the foundation of the Cold War (e.g. the Truman Doctrine) and instituted a loyalty oath for government workers which was then ramped-up by the Republicans, as is their wont, and the forerunners of McCarthy, such as Richard Nixon, were practicing their witchhunting of Communists

One prominent example in the current square of Neptune, which has been mentioned before, is now going under the sobriquet of “Russiagate”.  This is the belief that Russia and its demonic leader Vladimir Putin are behind most of the troubles in the world today, and that Putin’s noxious influence has determined the winner of America’s last Presidential election.  This is a feature of the ongoing New Cold War, which really came into prominence (though it started with the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991) with the violent coup in the Ukraine (though of course it is not called a coup in the mass media, though the President of what has been referred to as the private CIA (Stratfor) has called the event the most obvious coup in recent memory), which took place of February 22, 2014. This was the beginning of a difficult time for the world, and was indicated astrologically by the Grand Cross on April 22, 2014, which can be seen as the starting gun for a dangerous race.



Grand Cross


The charges in Russiagate have filled the news, and most seemingly liberal people, those who supported Clinton’s campaign for the Presidency in 2016, assuredly give credence to this belief of Russiagate.  But there is really no evidence for this, as former President Obama, former director of the CIA Michael Morell, and former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper have all said.  People need to realize that there is no there there.  Certainly there are many sins that they can get Trump on, but instead many people chase this chimera; that alone should suggest that this is part of the plan to further demonize Russia and avoid any possible detente.  But this has not stopped the belief, which is featured prominently in the major newspapers and news channels.  As I’ve said before, this is Neptune writ large.  This is surely a projection by American officials since the United States has “influenced” the elections of other countries more than once.  One example was so famous, involving a President of Russia who was far behind his opponent, that Time magazine even had a cover story celebrating the exploit. One wonders if afterwards Moscow was filled with complaints about “Clinton hacked our election”.



In fact, now almost any meeting with someone from Russia is suspect, innocent contacts with Russian officials are considered a sign of treason, and academic researchers are urged not too seem to close to Russia.  Full disclosure: I had a meeting with two Russian women over the Memorial Day weekend of 2012 in a bowling alley in New Orleans, so perhaps I too have been infected.

But recently something else has gripped the news media, and is strongly related to “Russiagate”: the charge, uniformly accepted by the aforementioned mass media, that the government of Syria attacked and killed many people (including beautiful innocent babies) with a poison gas, identified as sarin.  As a result President Trump sent Tomahawk missiles to pound Syria, thus proving he is Presidential by committing a War Crime, as all Presidents of the United States, at least as far back as Harry Truman, have done, and turned around the almost universal hatred of him into much (temporary) adulation.  Having committed a war crime was always the advantage Hillary Clinton had over him in being presidential.

But the nature of this chemical attack is very hazy.  Note that Neptune rules both poison gas and hazy.  Several things not mentioned: Syria has no poison gas, according to the United Nations which destroyed those weapons several years ago.  Then, as in any crime, one must asked cui bono — who profits.  Since Syria was winning the war and about to engage in a gathering to settle the war (in Brussels) this was surely the absolutely worst time to let off an attack by a chemical bomb, even if Syria’s government had them.  But of course the opponents to the government of Syria have much to gain from the attack. Then there is the report, also unmentioned in mass media, by a expert in national security and weapons of mass destruction from MIT that the explosion was from a bomb on the ground and not dropped from the air.  And of course there is doubt that the gas used was even sarin, since pictures of first responders show them not using any protections that are required for dealing with sarin.

But this bombing certainly gave a boost to the lagging presidency of Donald Trump.  In fact, some commentators at MSDNC have suggested that Putin arranged the chemical attack so that his buddy Donald Trump could appear decisive by his response.  The Russians themselves believe that Trump certainly knew this was not an attack by the government of Syria, for the obvious reasons given above, so they think that he is still open to talks with them, and that this was just an action he needed to take since he had been so weakened by the Russiagate attacks.  So whichever way you look at this incident, it is totally Neptunian.  When an crazy idea seems to take control of otherwise rational people, you can be sure Neptune is involved.  As we saw previously, there were strong Neptune contacts to the US chart at the beginnings of the Cold War in the late Forties.

Watching these events happen with a knowledge of Neptune allows one to observe the action of Neptune at first hand.  It seems like a fog has swept over America, and the fact of Russian interference with American (and those of other countries) elections is taken as fact by so-called reputable news services.  Between Russiagate and President Donald Trump, America must be the laughing-stock of other countries, or at least those who are not swept up in the American bubble.  And since almost all people — liberals — concerned with civil liberties hate Donald Trump with a passion, they don’t notice what looks at a distance as if the organizations such as the FBI, CIA, and NSA — the so-called Deep State — are attempting a soft coup to replace the elected President of the United States, just as if the USA were a “banana republic”.  They have much practice at replacing elected leaders in other countries, and now their skills are being applied closer to home.  It is a fitting close to the American Century.  Liberals should remember the famous saying from World War Two: First they came for the Communists and since I wasn’t a Communist I said nothing….


History Repeats

An obscure journalist in the Nineteenth Century, who became better known through his books and manifestos, once said that “History repeats itself, first as tragedy, second as farce”.  We are now seeing the truth of this dictum played out before us.
The Nineteenth Century journalist Karl Marx wrote a book called The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Napoleon.  People in the present mostly don’t recognize “Eighteen Brumaire” which for the educated European of the Nineteenth Century would be as recognizable as is 9/11 is today.  It all has to do with the end of the French Revolution; perhaps if we called that date sixteen years ago the twentieth of Virgo it would not be so recognizable either.

After the French Revolution, many things were changed.  For example, the customary methods of weights and measures were replaced by a more reasonable system based on units of ten, which was called the metric system and which I believe it is still in use in a few countries.  And the calendar was changed.  The French Revolutionary calendar had months corresponding to zodiacal signs, and Brumaire is Scorpio, so 18 Brumaire is 18 Scorpio or November 9.  The year in question was 1799.

So What happened on November 9, 1799?  It was well known again to European intellectuals of the Nineteenth Century.  There was a coup in France by Napoleon Bonaparte against the Directory of the French Revolution that ruled France, essentially installing Napoleon as a dictator in France and ending the French Revolution.  This was a big deal.  So the date 18 Brumaire was when the French Revolution ended.  Let us look at the chart for that date.



Eighteen Brumaire


In this char Sun is conjunct Neptune,   and it had passed over Neptune two days  earlier, possibly when the planning for the coup took place,  This conjunction suggest confused days in Paris.  And it certainly was. The tightest aspect is the sesquiquadrate between Pluto —  revolution, transformation — and Venus – justice.   And it certainly was that.

History repeats itself, first as tragedy, second as farce.

One of the contentions of this blog is that every time there is a midpoint configuration involving Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto – – at most three per century — there is a major change in the zeitgeist of society, which could be called it a soft coup.  We are living now under the combined impact of the three coups from the Twentieth Century, since the first from the Twenty First hasn’t happened yet.  The one closest to us in time, and so the one we most notice since many are still alive who remember life before that event, is what I call in shorthand the Neoliberal Coup, even though the previous one, called the National Security State coup, is also very strong, and will be discussed in a later post, though it has been discussed before.

We have seen this played out in the present.  The commanding issue of this time is Neoliberalism, since it originated with the midpoint configuration of the late Seventies discussed earlier.  These midpoint configurations indicate such a large change in society that much is different afterwards, so much so that we find it difficult to believe that another world was once possible and may be again.  This Neoliberaism coup finally crashed with the so-called Great Recession of 2007-2009, when Pluto crossed the cardinal axis and into the sign Capricorn.  The hero designated to slay the dragon of neoliberalism was Barak Obama.  And he appeared to suggest that he was the Champion who could do so — remember Hope and Change?  I’ve discussed before  the strong influence of Neptune in the election of Obama.  But he proved not to be the Champion people wanted him to be, and this was the tragedy.




These two graphs illustrated what has been happening.  The first one shows allotment of income in economic recovery — after each economic downturn there is a recovery when incomes increase.  In the recovery after World War II, under President Harry Truman, 80% of the income increase went to the bottom 90 % of the population and only 20 % went to the top 10%.  This ratio kept falling during subsequent recoveries after other downturns, and by the recovery under President Reagan the upper 10% got 80% of the income increase, leaving only 20% for the bottom 90% of the population, the reverse of what happened under Truman.  But at least the bottom 90% got some income increase. This changed under the last recovery, under President Obama.  In that case the bottom 90% lost about 15% of their income, while the upper 10% gained almost 120%, or in other words got some income from the bottom 90%, thus increasing the already massive inequality.  This is unprecedented in the last 70 years.




The next graph shows the distribution of wealth — assets — of families over the last 100 years.  We can see that the top 0.1%, that is the upper one tenth of one percent of the population, reached a height of 26% of the total wealth in 1929 right before the start of the Great Depression.  Their share of total wealth then fell until the late Seventies and the beginning of Neoliberalism; at this point their share was only 7%.  That share started to increase, but still the share of the wealth owned by the 90% increased until it was 36% in the mid-Eighties under President Reagan.  It then began to fall, and of course the share held by the upper tenth of a percent increased until now they have almost met and crossed.  We await newer figures with anticipation!  But one can see from these two graphs that things have gotten worse for the bottom 90%, and this was foretold when newly elected President Obama told a group of assembled bankers, who expected the worst, that he was the only thing between them and the pitchforks.  And now that he is ex-President he has been rewarded by those same bankers with two $400,000 speaking engagements and of course a $65 million book deal, and in early May he made a $3.2 million for a speech in Milan, showing clearly that he is not a part of the 90%

A recently published book by a Professor Emeritus in Economics at MIT called The Vanishing Middle Class: Prejudice and Power in a Dual Economy by Peter Temin lays in out.  He says that American society is dividing into an upper 20%, in the finance, technology, and electronics sector, and the lower 80%, and that those two groups are increasingly divided from one another.  Those in the two groups live in different countries, and do not communicate.  Needless to say, those running the media – newspapers, television — live in only one of those worlds, unlike many years ago before the Neoliberal Revolution when many journalists were from the 80% that are not in the FTE sector.

Barack Obama was chosen to run since he was a much better mask to hide America, a biracial mask that was more glamorous than the one offered by George W. Bush, whose behavior had damaged Brand America.  And he promised Hope and Change (TM) which people believed somehow would solve the problems that Neoliberalism had brought into their lives.  But as we have seen by these graphs, and many studies, not only did things not improve, but they got worse.  Inequality increased over the last eight years.  So the mask has been ripped away, and America is seen as it truly is.  Now things are blatant with a louche businessman as the face of America.



Pluto Opposite Sun


One clear sign that the current populace of the United States is not happy with the current government, current President, and in fact all of what was called in a simpler time the “Establishment” was shown obviously by the transit of Pluto opposite the United States Sun, depicted above by a chart for an exact pass and below by a graphical ephemeris for a five year period.  The Sun represent the President, etc. and revolutionary, transformative Pluto is opposite it.  The last time this opposition happened the Sun represented the King of England, Georrge III; the result was the American Revolution.




So next comes the Farce.  In a farce, situations are often exaggerated so that people understand what is going on, since the situation under the tragedy was somehow too subtle for people to comprehend, or the influence of Neptune was too strong.  Often the protagonist in a farce is indicated by some outward comical characteristic, say to pick an example totally at random, flaming orange hair.  The real problem in this farce is that people may not understand that it is a farce, and they will either attack the messenger — always a bad idea — or believe if only the farce stops things will go back to normal and everything will be as it should be.  One can imagine people demanding that the previous mask be returned to them, that if only the mask comes back things would be well.  One would think by now people would realize that the farce is just an exaggeration of what was the situation before.  To be more specific, Donald Trump is not sui generis, but rather an exaggeration for emphasis, as is usually the case in a farce.  But of course the Powers behind Neoliberalism are only too happy if you attack the Protagonist of the farce rather than the men behind the curtain, themselves.


The battle of Antietam, also called the Battle of Sharpsburg since it was fought near Sharpsburg, Maryland, was an important battle in what is commonly called the Civil War of the United States.  The Civil War is a term mostly used by descendants of the Union side; the preferred term for the descendants of the Confederacy is “War Between the States”.  In actually, this wasn’t a real civil war, since in the case of a civil war two powers are trying to take over the government; but in this case one power wanted to leave the government.  We see many of these in current times, resulting in Eritrea and Ethiopia, South Sudan and Sudan, and potentially Scotland and Great Britain and Basque and Spain.

The Battle of Antietam is considered the bloodiest day in American History, though a natural disaster in Galveston did claim more lives thought over more days.  It was fought in the state of Maryland on September 17, 1862.  The battle was started before dawn on that day, which gives us a time upon which to draw a chart.  Twenty thousand men were killed, wounded, or missing as a result of that battle.  Even though the battle is seen now as a draw, neither the Union or Confederate sides getting a victory, it was enough to cause the President Abraham Lincoln to feel confident enough to issue a preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, that at last reveled the true nature of the Civil War.  This document allowed Great Britain, who had been thinking of recognizing the Confederate side, even though the UK had emancipated its slaves in 1833, to finally decide that the Union side was the one to back in the country that had been its colony less than 100 years previously.

Sharpsburg is on the Antietam creek, a tributary of the Potomac; it is about a mile north of the Potomac and about fifty miles west of Washington, DC so it was very close to the seat of the Union government and home to President Abraham Lincoln.  Antietam was the first large scale battle to take place in the East where the Confederate soldiers had invaded the Union territory.  This was one of the reason it is considered a important battle, and why it was considered Union victory, even though it wasn’t.  The leaders of the two side were George McClellan of the Union side and Robert E. Lee from the Confederacy.  Even though Lee’s forces were outnumbered, McClellan thought that his forces were outnumbered.  Because of McClellan’s lack of aggressiveness in this and other battles, he was soon relieved of his duties by Lincoln.  The battle is famous for another, more gruesome reason.  Photography had been invented during the Uranus-Neptune conjunction forty years before, and Mathew Brady is famous for photographing scenes from the Civil War.  The photographer Alexander Gardner was working for Brady and in this battle he captured the first photos of dead people where they fell in battle. These were shot in 3-D, Gardner’s standard at the time, and they were shown in Brady’s gallery in New York City and were available by mail order from a catalog.  One can try to imagine the sight of dead American bodies seen by citizens in their parlors — it was quite a shock and truly brought home the carnage of the War to people.


The Battle Starts


This first chart is an event chart for the beginning of the battle.  According to accounts, the troops started before dawn.  I’ve set this chart for a few minutes before the Sun hit the Eastern horizon: 5:40AM.  I did not see before I did the chart that Uranus was exactly on the Midheaven at that time, which is certainly appropriate for a battle where there is much excitement and changeability.  Mars, of course, is in the Seventh house where the enemy would be met.  Neptune is also there — the fog of war and McClellan’s mistake about Confederate troop strength.  The Sun is square Uranus, which would occur all day.  There is a very tight (under one half degree) sesquiquadrate between Saturn and Pluto.  We have discussed before the tragic consequences that befall the nation and the world under a hard aspects between Saturn and Pluto, and here we see it again.  The Sun is conjunct Saturn — much hard work on that day, but Jupiter is in the first house, and indeed the outcome — the Emancipation Proclamation — was positive.  There are two clear oppositions from the first to the seventh houses — Mars opposite Mercury — angry words — and Jupiter opposed to Neptune — apparent happiness.


Later That Morning


Here is a chart drawn for 7 that morning.  You can see that the Sun has already risen, but it is still square Uranus.  This chart shows that the last quarter Moon is at the Midheaven in the early morning, where it would be visible.





And here is a chart for this event within the USA natal chart, where we can see the effects of the battle on the country.  That sun conjunct Saturn is near the top of the chart – the exact conjunction of the Sun with the US Midheaven is about a week later — this is high noon for America for the year.  Neptune is opposite the MC, indicating the the Civil War is a generational crisis of the country.  Probably the most obvious aspect is transiting Uranus conjunct the Mars of the United States, Uranus inflaming the martial spirit of the country, and it has been pointed out this was an important battle where the Confederate troops first invade the North and got near to the capital.


Emancipation Proclamation


And finally here is a chart for when Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation.  You can see the Sun has now moved to be conjoined with the MC — this is the crowning point of the year for the US.  And we can see that Venus is conjunct the Moon at 12 noon, which is a good guess for when the bill was signed.  In this case Venus represents Justice, which by signing this bill Lincoln was assuring for the slaves that were affected — those living in states which were in conflict with the Union.  The Moon is almost New — which would happen in a little over a day — signifying  as New Moons do the start of a new cycle.

The Golden Spike Heard Around the World

In today’s interconnected world, we are used to hearing about events that happen elsewhere almost immediately, and this trend has been going on for some time.  Depending on your age, you will have been asked “Where were you when you heard that 1) Pearl Harbor was attacked 2) Kennedy was shot 3) the World Trade Center was hit 4) Donald Trump was elected President”.  All of these events were announced almost immediately to the world.  But it has not always been that way, and in fact we can identify the first such event: The driving of the last spike to complete the Transcontinental Railroad joining the West and East Coasts of the United States.  This happened at twelve noon at Promontory Point in Utah on May 10, 1869.

This was important for a number of reasons: The Civil War, called the Second American Revolution by some people, had just ended, and as a result Americans were feeling more confident after the crisis that “sounded like a fire bell in the night”, to quote Thomas Jefferson shortly before he died, was at the end, or so it was thought at the time, and this “Golden Spike” symbolized the joining of the whole United States almost in its current form.  Now that Americans could easily travel from coast to coast, the remaining native Americans who more occupied the West than the white settlers from the East, could now be hunted down and eliminated as a threat to the expansion of the American experiment.  And this completion of the Transcontinental Railroad was an exhibit of what was becoming the dominant financial power — similar to Silicon Valley in these days — of the country.  Railroads were very important in the growth of the West, the growth of American power, and the growth of financial power that became large scale corporations which were to dominate America towards the end of the Nineteenth Century, a dominance that has by no means receded in the following centuries.

The railroad itself had first been developed in England at the beginning of the century, and that development itself represent a major change from what had been the norm of the world for the millennia before that time.  As long as there had been any type of people on the Earth, it had only been possible to travel from one point to another by either moving yourself by foot or depending on some animal such as a horse to carry you or to travel by a ship whose speed was dependent on either the wind or sailors with oars.  This top speed was limited and there was not really anyway to go faster.  With the beginnings of the Industrial Revolution a power was developed that could move faster than dependence on muscle power alone.  This was a major change.


Driving the Golden Spike


In the event chart for the Golden Spike, we see first that the Sun is on the Midheaven.  This is perfectly normal, since the ceremony for the placing of the golden spike was scheduled for noon, and since this was before time zones, the Sun by definition is at the Midheaven at noon. Mars is on the Ascendant, and indeed the coming of the railroads would lead to a great increase in movement — Mars — in the environment of the United States.  Other than several conjunctions — look at the traffic jam of Sun, Pluto, Moon, and Jupiter — there are very few aspects.  Saturn is the only planet below the horizon, attempting to anchor this event to the earth symbolizing the spike driven Into the soil of Utah.  The Sun is conjunct Pluto with an orb of three and a half degrees, and this was indeed a transformative event.  The tightest aspect here is Mercury semisquare Neptune — confused communications.




Spike – USA


In the chart for transits of this event within the USA chart, we see that Uranus is conjunct the Sun of the US, and this event was hastening the expansion of the country into the west (tough luck for the natives that already lived there!) and brought much change to the country.  Uranus also tightly square the US Saturn, and this is event leads to more conflicts between the old established orders and the New.  Mars is opposite the Moon of the US — the people of America would now be on the move, and they wouldn’t stop.

But the news of the event would not have reverberated around the world so quickly without another development which had happened a quarter century earlier.  That development was the telegraph.  Up until this point, messages over long distances, farther than the human voice could carry, were limited to the transportation under muscle power as indicated above, or with a carrier pigeon or balloon.  But the last two were very sporadic and dependent on others, not dependable, and certainly not remotely instantaneous.  The telegraph changed all that.

There were many early attempts to create telegraphy, documented in, among other sources, The Victorian Internet by Tom Standage, which as the tile suggests that invention was akin to the development of the Internet in our age.  At last information could be transmitted at the speed electrons traveled along a wire.  While we don’t have a date when the telegraph was first invented, there is a famous first telegraph message.  It was sent by the erstwhile painter Samuel F. B. Morse to an assistant in Baltimore with the message “What Hath God Wrought” from the book of Number in the Bible.  This “first telegraphic message” happened on May 24, 1844.



What Hath God Wrought?


In the chart for this event the Moon is opposite Neptune, which would be discovered in a little over two years from that date.  To me this opposition suggests the stretching of the imagination that the telegraph and the succeeding electronic communications marvels would bring to the people, represented here by the Moon.  The essence of Neptune is captured by the word “virtual.”  The tightest aspect — almost exact — is the Sun semisquare Venus.  Since Venus travels around the Sun within the orbit of the Earth, Venus can never get much further from the Sun, as seen from the Earth, than it is in this chart.  The Sun is an evening star in this case, setting long after the Sun, known as Venus Hesperus.  This suggests that the meaning of events — in this case telegraphy — would be realized or understood long after the fact.  Since the telegraph directly involves Mercury functions– communication — it is interesting to see that Mercury is Retrograde for the important first telegraph communication. This further  augments the Venus Hesperus position — the results of this invention would be revealed long after the fact.



Telegraph — USA


In the chart for the first telegraphic communication on the US natal, Jupiter, loosely conjoined with Uranus, is on the IC of the chart.  Uranus transiting over the IC of the United States by itself indicates that profound and deep seated changes wee already happening to the society of the country, one example of which is the sudden desire to express Manifest Destiny by expanding to the West Coast of the continent, which at that time was not part of the United States.  Richard Tarnas has dealt at length with Jupiter Uranus hard aspects and invention (see Section VI of Cosmos and Psyche) and this invention would bring further long lasting changes to the society of the United States, and of the World.  We also see Neptune approaching exact conjunction with the Moon.  Unlike previous forms of communication – think voice or letter – the communications by telegraph are quite Neptunian, involving bursts of electricity transmitted down a wire, a level or more removed from reality.  This was the first form of “virtual” communication.  The influence of Neptune is reinforced by the tightest aspect of transiting Saturn sesquiquadrate the natal Neptune.  The reality of communications is transmitted by a Neptunian — almost illusory — means of the telegraph wire.