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 seeming 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.


An Appearance of Neptune

The United States is getting hit with a strong Neptune transit now and through the rest of the year, and also in 2018, as you can see in the graphic ephemeris below.  This aspect is a square of Neptune to the Ascendant of the United States.  This square was quite close in the summer of last year and will have its first exact aspect next week, and the aspect will be exact again or very close in the Fall and Winter of this year and early 2018.  The black  arrow indicates where the purple line  representing transiting Neptune crosses the horizontal dashed gold line representing the natal Ascendant near the center vertical axis representing March 17.



Two years of Neptune Square the US Ascendant


The United States is already seeing one of the effects of this strong Neptune influence, and when it is exact next week we will possibly see others.  The political establishment, which includes the major media such as the newspapers the New York Times and the Washington Post, and cable news channels CNN and MSDNC, have seized on the meme of Russia controlling the Trump administration after having determined who would be the President of the United States.  These are extremely serious charges, and nothing like them have been made before, even in the dark days of McCarthyism  in the late Forties and early Fifties, though the John Birch Society once charged President Eisenhower with being a Communist agent, but that was considered a laughable minority view.  These charges basically claim that the current President is an agent of Russia and its always demonized leader Vladimir Putin.  Under this rush to judgement all manner of accusations are possible, and all are believed if it suits the narrative.  This is a prime example of the pervasive influence of Neptune.  Neptune, remember, especially when in a hard aspect, quoting Ebertin, rules confusion, deception, fraud.

But coming up next week, when the aspect is exact for the first time, are two important but perhaps overlooked items on the National Calendar.  The first happens on March 15, when the suspension of the National Debt, put together by the then President Obama, and the then House Speaker John Boehner, in 2015  expires, so that the government can no longer borrow money.  All those checks people depend on from the government may no longer exist after that date. This seems like a sure recipe for confusion.

But a few days after that something else is expected to happen.  At least everyone, including the person most involved, Janet Yellen head of the Federal Reserve, suggest it will happen.  When this happens it will be the third time the prime interest rate has been raised since the Great Recession, the first time being in December 2015 by just a quarter of a percent; then again in December of last year it was boosted by a modest half percent. Evidently Yellen believes that the economy is doing so well we can “afford” to raise the rate. This is an end to the qualitative easing in the United States that supported many large businesses after the Great Recession of 2008.  That event will be the raising of the basic lending rate a bank uses to borrow money, which should trickle down to the interest rates for credit cards, home mortgages, and many other things that involve borrowing money.  Not only that, but we can expect several more rate increases in 2017 and 2018.  I would expect the stock market, which has been going gangbusters since the election, to start to moderate its (irrational?) exuberance.  If this rate increase happens it is expected to change many things outside the United States as well.  Suddenly there will be capital outflows from countries in the European Union and from China, expected soon to be the biggest economy in the world, into the United States.  The United States dollar will be then stronger against foreign currency.  But there is an important reason to raise the rate: when an economic downturn hits the Fed reacts by lowering the prime rate.  If the rate is already very low, the room to maneuver is very tight.  Some analysts suggest that the country has waited too long after the Great Recession for the first hike.  But again there will be confusion.  Stay tuned.


Exact Neptune Square Ascendant


If we look at this chart for the exact square we see a number of interesting things.  The Sun is at the nadir, opposite the Midheaven.  This can be read symbolically as that the energies of the entity — the USA — are at their lowest ebb of the year (the highest would be six months later in September).  Transiting Mars is sesquiquadrate natal Neptune and semisquare natal Mars, which reflects the Mars-Neptune square in the natal chart, which is accentuated at this time.  Mars square Neptune is always problematic.  It suggests disturbed or misdirected energies; sometimes (??) the country makes actions that work against its own best interests.  With all the Mars-Neptune energies at this time, the country may take rash actions or make incorrect decisions.  Saturn is in the first house so the USA hasn’t totally recovered its self-confidence. All of this suggests a very Neptunian period with everyone spouting their own theories of what is happening/will happen.  The mass media will certainly be caught of in this Neptunian fog.

The Inauguration

Donald Trump is the gift that keeps on giving.  His name is everywhere, filling the newspapers.  If you live on the West coast or in the Northeast it is mandatory that you hate him, even though we are told that love trumps hate.  A friend suggested that I look at the chart of his inauguration.  As you can see from the event chart below, the Inauguration of out 45th President started at 11:45 in the morning of January 20.  I’m not sure if this started before noon because the Vice-President has to be inaugurated before the President, and the President must take the oath at Noon, or this was just a bit earlier than noon for some other reason.  However, the chart drawn for noon has the Moon well below the Descendant, by almost 5 degrees, though it is above the horizon a degree and a half. This illustrates that the horizon — which people had an instinctive knowledge of –` and the Ascendant/Descendant` are not the same



Chart At Noon


Note:  Because of limits of the software, the whole word “Inauguration”  can not be spelled out at the top of the charts, so  one character is missing.





The most prominent aspect to note is that the Moon is opposite the Ascendant, Mars is sesquiquadrate the Moon, and Saturn is semisquare the moon.  And in fact you can see a “cats-cradle” formation between the Moon, Saturn, Mars, and the Ascendant, indicated by the arrows.  Jupiter is square the Midheaven, promising good fortune but not without difficulty (square)and because Jupiter is also opposite Uranus, we have a loose T square with the MC at the apex of that opposition.  Ebertin says for this “optimism, a love of change and variety”.   Looking at the fourth harmonic chart (below), we see Mars-Saturn is opposite along the Ascendant and the Moon, Jupiter is very tight to the Midheaven, and of course the Venus Pluto sextile in the first harmonic chart is now a trine in this fourth harmonic chart.  The Moon = Mars/Saturn midpoint combination is not too pleasant: Ebertin says a ”a fit of depression”.  And for the Ascendant = Mars/Saturn he says “obstacles caused by other people”.  Mars Saturn is a difficult combination.  Some have compared this combination of planets to driving with the brakes on: Mars wants to go fast, and Saturn wants to hold back.  It can suggest difficult progress on actions that are taken hastily.  Since this combination is connected with two personal points, the Ascendant and the Moon, it is very powerful.  And as we can especially see in the fourth harmonic chart that this whole configuration — Moon, Mars, Saturn, Ascendant — are tightly bound together, as is Jupiter to the Midheaven.  It suggest slow progress but with much depression and anxiety amongst the populace, perhaps especially women (Moon). But this is cause for optimism with Jupiter so tightly connected to the Midheaven.



Inauguration  Fourth Harmonic


Looking at the transits of the time with the US chart (below), we see that the two tightest aspects are both trines — harmonious — with the transiting Mars trine natal Mercury, and, almost as tight, transiting Sun — the day — is trine the US Midheaven.  These are both very tight, as can easily seen in the third harmonic chart (also below), where trines come out as conjunctions.  We can also easily see from this chart that there is a tight Moon-Neptune trine (conjunction in the third harmonic), both transiting.  Since the Moon represents the minute, the exact time of this event since the Moon moves so fast, at this moment in time the populace (Moon) were confused (Neptune) or self deceiving (Ebertin).  Also  note  the sesquiquadrate between Neptune   and the USA Mercury, which says much the same thing.  The trine from the transiting Sun to the US MC is beneficial, promising that this President will be very purposeful in achieving his objectives, which of course may not be good news to many people.  The other trine — Mars to Mercury – – suggest much the same, forceful movement towards a goal, an active mind and many angry (Mars) thoughts (Mercury).  The media of the United States (Mercury) will find forceful pressure from the incoming President.  Finally we have transiting Mercury opposite Jupiter, the third tightest aspect: There will be lots and lots of things to talk about with this upcoming administration.



USA at Inauguration



USA at Inauguration Harmonic 3


That of course is assuming Donald Trump is President for very long.  It is no secret that many are out to get him, including the National Security Establishment and the Democrats.  Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer warned on the cable news channel MSDNC that Trump is “really dumb” to criticize the intelligence community since they have “six ways from Sunday of getting back at you.”  As I write they have already drawn first blood, with the firing/resignation of Michael Flynn as his National Security Advisor.  As anyone who has watched nature movies knows, when a predator smells blood they go in for the kill.  Now that one member of the administration is down, and Trump has shown that he won’t support his representative, and thus looks weak, there will be attempts to pick off other members of the administration, starting of course with the weakest, aiming for the big prize, dislodging Donald Trump himself.  The chart below show what I believe is a critical time for him, and it could be a fatal time: This is August 21. 2017.



Trump At the Solar Eclipse


The first thing to notice is the both the Sun and Moon are conjunct and on his Ascendant. But notice that the Node of the Moon is there also, meaning that this is a Solar Eclipse, and indeed it is the one famously visibly in America.  This is a tremendous omen for the president.  For those who use Fixed Stars, Regulus, the Heart of the Lion, is also at this point, and that suggests a downfall of epic proportions.  But also notice the position of Saturn, exactly conjunct his Moon and opposite his Sun.  On this day Saturn is stationary but the exact point where it turns direct is four days off.  Saturn has been on his Moon and Sun all of 2017 and it has not been a pleasant time for him.  And because of Saturn’s retrograde travels it has been a very, very long time: Donald Trump is getting hit by Saturn as long as is possible.  I’m sure he’s hurting, but he won’t show it.

Here are few keywords for the fixed Star Regulus: Brave, bloodthirsty, ambitious, egotistical.  You get the idea.  More can be found by a search on line.  Sound familiar?  Now keywords for Ascendant conjunct the Ascendant: Great wealth but troubles, benefits do always last.  Again, you get the idea, this describes a person very successful but with an ultimate downfall. As I said in the previous paragraph, the end of August looks like a most problematic period for Donald J. Trump —  too many people are after him!

War of the Worlds

The British writer H. G. Wells — a Virgo — is best known for his science fiction stories, and in fact Wells and his contemporary the French writer Jules Verne basically set the prototype for most science fiction written in the succeeding centuries.  The story of time travel was essentially created by his story The Time Machine.  This theme has been popular down through the ages and there is even a contemporary television drama based on this very theme.  The Mad Scientist trope was originated by his novel The Island of Doctor Moreau.  And then there was his story The First Men in the Moon which is about just what the title suggests.  But the theme of alien invasion which has been richly explored was originated by his novel The War of the Worlds (serialized in 1897, published as a book in 1898), which tells of an invasion of the Earth by Martians.  This story was written in the last decade of the Nineteenth Century, under the Neptune-Pluto conjunction, when Modernism was just beginning to shape Western civilization.  He predicted World War II in his work The Shape of Things To Come, written in 1933 (arguable not an extreme prediction at that time) which later became a film which he wrote.  Wells was a forerunner in his science fiction.

His classic novel The War of the Worlds, also serialized in an American magazine in the late Nineteenth Century, tells of an invasion by a Martian space craft into the Southern English countryside and the subsequent destruction of parts of London that were familiar to his readers.  When this theme was brought to America, as the films and the radio play discussed below did, the setting was changed to America, which was much more meaningful to the American viewers and listeners.  It was made into a film several times, the latest in 2005, directed by Steven Speilberg.

This novel was set into radio play by the famed actor Orson Welles (note the last names are similar but not the same) and his group the Mercury Theatre near the end of the Great Depression and before the official start of World War Two, less than a year later with the German invasion of Poland on September 1, 1939.  The play was performed by Welles and adapted from the novel by a playwright who was later blacklisted in Hollywood.  The play was considerably different from the novel.   In Welles’ play, an orchestra was playing music of the kind people danced to in 1938, but this seemingly innocuous radio performance was interrupted by breathless announcements of an landing of an invasion party at a farm in New Jersey, close to New York City where the broadcast originated. Americans were in a fairly fragile state at the time, which may explain the famous reaction to the radio broadcast.  About 50% of the people who heard the radio broadcast on the eve of Halloween though that it was a true report of an invasion of this planet, in New Jersey, and of those 40% panicked.  There were, however, no deaths on this occasion; the same can not be said when the same performance was tried in Peru in 1949.  Welles’ Mercury Theatre would often base their plays on works of literature, and in fact just a week before this broadcast they did a radio performance based on Jules Verne’s Around the World in 80 Days, so people familiar with this CBS show should not have believed in was true.  It seems “fake news” is not just a contemporary phenomenon.  At this time radio was a relatively new medium, and Welles used it masterfully.  He was up against a show — ventriloquist Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy — that was ten times as popular as his show.  Much of Welles version of War of the Worlds was with an orchestra, with interruptions of announcements of the invasion timed to match the commercial breaks of the competing show.  Those who just tuned to his show from Bergen’s continued to listen after being entranced by the invasion.  As the invasion got worse, a “Secretary of the Interior” who sounded an awfully much like current President Franklin Roosevelt, urged listeners to stay calm.  By the end of the show, as in the novel, the aliens are killed by the bacteria of Earth to which they have no immunity.  However, many did not listen to the end of the show, but made panicked calls to their relatives or their local police departments.

By the next days, those who had realized that it was simply a radio drama congratulated themselves at their wisdom and thought Welles was a genius, while those who had believe the story were outraged and there were many lawsuits, all of which were eventually dismissed.

After people settled down, the results were beneficial for both Wells and Welles. More people started to read the original novel and H. G. Wells changed his opinion of the radio adaptation.  Orson Welles received a large contract from a movie studios and went on to direct and star in Citizen Kane, which even today is considered one of the best movies ever made.



War of the Worlds Broadcast


We have two charts to look at.  It is convenient that we have an actual time for the performance, the time of that the broadcast started in the studios in New York City at 8 in the evening the day before Halloween.  If we look at the chart we see that the Moon is just beyond an opposition to Pluto: the opposition was exact about fire hours before the broadcast. In this case the Moon opposition Pluto indicated that the populace (Moon) was already primed to overreact and panic (Pluto) to this event.  Now obviously it helps that we know what event resulted.  Moon is opposite Pluto once a month, so while this always indicates that the people might be more prone to panic at this time, usually nothing occurs for people to act on the latent urge to panic.  The moon also make a tight trine to Mars which was exact a half hour before the broadcast.  Mars of course rules war, a very appropriate symbol for the event.  Then we have a loose opposition between Mercury — communications, such the radio — and Uranus– upsets.  Since the Moon is a fast moving planet, traveling about twelve degrees a day, its transits are not very consequential in the long, or even medium, run, but they are indicative of evens that happen at a certain time of that day.



Broadcast Transits to USA


For the chart of these same transits within the chart of the United States, we first of all see an exact Neptune Return of the US.  This is the first time that Neptune had returned to its natal position.  For human beings planetary returns are important for some “crisis” (not a negative term) in the nature of the planet involved.  For people, the most notable return is that of Saturn, which occurs ever 29 years or so.  At one time this led to the saying, among those who had not experienced their first Saturn Return, of “Never trust Anyone Over Thirty”.  In biographies we can notice that people often change around thirty, an you may notice that in your own life.  People truly become adults at that time.  The second Saturn Return is at age fifty eight, and a change occurs then that many do not recognize.  A third Saturn Return, which also corresponds, more or less, to the Uranus Return, occurs at age 85.  This is important but not much talked about.  But humans never have a Neptune Return (or a Pluto Return, which is very important and coming up for the United Sates) which occurs at about 160 years.  This Neptune Return of the US involved some Neptunian examples of illusion and deception, though perhaps not intended.

In addition, Mars has just passed over the Midheaven of the United States.  This happens every two years, so it is not uncommon, but its position shows that Mars-like things, especially War, occupied the consciousness of the United States and thus the citizens of that country.  We also see transiting Saturn aspecting the Sun, Moon, and Ascendant of the United States, as well as opposing its own natal position, reflecting the still depressed state of the populace in these waning days of the Great Depression, and also the further repression that was currently happening because of Roosevelt’s tightening of activities that ameliorated the Great Depression, resulting in what is called the Roosevelt Recession. One can see that a number of astrological factors occurred at the same time that permitted the panic following this radio broadcast to take place.  While obviously the combination of these factors, all minor, would not allow someone to forecast the consequences, upon hindsight it is possible to “hindcast” what in fact did happen.


The phenomenon known as McCarthyism was an attempt, when seen at a distance, to purge America of radical tendencies that had developed under the closing Uranus-Pluto square of the Nineteen Thirties and the New Deal Administration of Franklin Roosevelt.  It actually originated long before the Senator from Wisconsin, Joseph McCarthy, came on the scene with an introductory speech in West Virginia, and some people think that it should actually be called “Hooverism” for FBI director J. Edgar Hoover, who did much to promote an anti-communist agenda in the United States, but without the baggage that McCarthy brought to his confrontation.  Nevertheless, “McCarthyism” is what this direction in the United States was known, so it is the term we shall use.

McCarthyism may seem to be a relic of the distant past, when politics was much less sophisticated than it is in the enlightened Twenty-First Century, but here in this election season in the United States we are seeing McCarthy-like practices being bandied about in a big way, this time by a major political party and backed by the resources of most of the major media sources, such as the New York Times and the Washington Post.  And no one seems to be upset with this.  It is, as the French say, The More Things Change the More They Remain The Same.



Joseph McCarthy


Joseph McCarthy was a Senator from Wisconsin who replaced the son (who had replaced his father) of “Fighting” Bob LaFollette, the man who formed the Wisconsin Progressive Party, and McCarthy was replaced in turn by William Proxmire, a famous liberal Senator during the Sixties and Seventies.  Here is a chart for Joseph McCarthy.  He is a Scorpio, the most notorious of signs (in the New Testament of the Bible there are twelve apostles, each associated with one of the twelve zodiacal signs, and Judas is associated with the sign Scorpio).  Charles Manson and Jack the Ripper were also Scorpios, and it is the second most popular sun sign for Presidents of the United States.  But he also has Aries rising and Mars, the ruler of Aries, near is Descendant.  Both indicate that he could have a forceful, perhaps even abrasive personality.  Uranus is at the Midheaven, in the Tenth House, indicating that he is seen as rebellious, perhaps a maverick.  He was known a “Tailgunner Joe”  because of his lie that he served in World War II as a tailgunner in bombers.  But perhaps Mars can seen as symbolically at the tail of the chart, whereas the Ascendant is the head.





McCarthy first came to the public’s attention when he made a speech to a Republican Woman’s club in Wheeling, West Virginia for a Lincoln Day celebration on February 9, 1950; in this speech he made the statement that he had a list of 205 (the actual number is in dispute since there is no recording) Communists in the State Department.  The media made much of this charge, and McCarthy was off and running.  We are fortunate that we have dates for the events that lead to the rise and fall of Joe McCarthy.  Here is a chart for McCarty’s transit on the day of that speech.  In this chart the most obvious feature is Neptune on the Descendant of McCarthy’s chart.  This could be read as McCarthy is being deceived by others around him (Descendant) or, much more likely, he is deceiving and misleading those around him.  Mars is just below his Descendant and about to rise above it, showing that he is about to unleash his Martial energies on an (unsuspecting) public.

But what we call McCarthyism did not start with that speech. Though there had been waves of anti-communist thought in the America before, most notably after the Russian Revolution in 1917, it had really become serious with the start of the Cold War after World War II.  The Cold War grew after the watershed moment in world history represented by Pluto at the midpoint of Uranus and Neptune as has been discussed before .  That midpoint configuration had set the ground work, but then there was the Saturn-Pluto conjunction of 1947 which started the Cold War with McCarthyism as its handmaid.  The importance of hard aspects of Saturn and Pluto have been discussed before.  But a third aspect showed the length of McCarthyism, even though those residual effects lasted until the mid-Sixties.  That aspect was the transiting Pluto on the Sun-Midheaven midpoint of the United States.  Pluto can stand for, among other things, repression, as seen in the Saturn-Pluto aspects.  In this case what was repressed is that represented by the combination of Sun and Midheaven, the true personality or government as filtered into the public world. The Sun/MC midpoint is very important to the nature of the country as expressed.  It was discussed early on in his blog that Neptune was transiting this midpoint during the campaign and election of Barack Obama, showing the amount of self-delusion and illusion that was seen in that election.




This five year graphical ephemeris shows Pluto transiting that midpoint; the black arrow indicates one place that the midpoint conjunction was exact.  The curvy red line representing the transiting Pluto intersects the dashed line representing the Sun/MC midpoint, just above the natal Moon line.


End of Army-McCarthy Hearings


The end of Joseph McCarthy, though McCarthyism itself would last until the middle of the next decade, happened of June 9, 1954.  McCarthy was hassling the Army — he had charged the Army with promoting a Brooklyn dentist who had taken the Fifth Amendment (which prevented self-incrimination) when signing the military loyalty oath.  As a result, there was what was called the Army-McCarthy hearings held in the Senate.  There was massive coverage of these hearings on the newly popular television. The dénouement of the hearings, and the end of McCarthy’s career, occurred when McCarthy charged an associate in the law firm of Joseph Welch, who was counsel for the Army, with suspicious activity — he had been a member of the National Lawyers Guild, which was considered dominated by Communists.  Welch asked of McCarthy “Have you no sense of decency”. After that McCarthy was increasingly seen as a pathetic figure, and he died of alcoholism three years later — May 2, 1957.  In the transits to McCarty’s chart for this day, Neptune has come above the Descendant into the Seventh House and is closely conjunct his natal Mars.  The Mars-Neptune combinations can be ugly — a weakness or lack of energy according to Ebertin.  Mars, which was at the Descendant in the earlier chart is now at the Midheaven, after having gone around the chart twice.  Symbolically, Mars — his directed energy — is at the highest it will lever reach.  Saturn is on his Mercury — depressed or solemn thoughts — and during the day the transiting Moon has been opposite his Saturn, indicating more Saturnian energy.  Mercury is opposite his Uranus, suggesting changed thoughts; transiting Pluto is square his Sun — the oppressor has become oppressed.

But the precedents, influences, and resultant changes to the culture of the United States as a result of McCarthyism are is some ways more important. Here are a few of those stories.

Elizabeth Gurley Flynn was one of the founders of the ACLU, along with her chief antagonist Morris Ernst.  She had been an organizer of the International Workers of the World (Wobblies) before helping to form the ACLU in 1920.  Flynn had joined the Communist Party of the USA in 1937, and had told her fellow board members about this, with no objections.  In the early days the ACLU was spending most of its time defending anti-war protesters during the first Red Scare that happened around the time it was founded.  On the evening of May 7, 1940 until 2:30 am at a New York City men’s club there was a “trial” of Elizabeth Gurley Flynn by the executive committee of the ACLU.  This was a forerunner of McCarthyism that involved the anti-communists of the ACLU, not right-wing Republicans, attempting to water down the ACLU’s policy of defending unpopular opinions.  This set the scenario of later attacks on Communists.  As a result, Flynn was thrown off the board of the ACLU.



Trial of Helen Gurley Flynn


Here a chart for the start of that event.  You can see that Pluto is sextile the Midheaven. During the course of the evening, Mars passed over the Descendant at about 11 and Pluto passed over at about 1:15 the next morning.  This trial occurred just after the New Moon in Taurus.

Liberals like Morris Ernst (and Americans for Democratic Action, founded at the start of the Cold War in 1947) had good intentions, those paving stones of Hell.  They assumed, rightly, that other liberals would not support the ACLU (or other organization like the National Lawyers Guild that Ernst was also involved in) if they allowed Communists to be part of the organization.  Unfortunately, they went against the basic credo of the organization by banning those with whom they disagreed.

During McCarthyism there was an informal association of anti-communists, who did everything that could to battle Communism and were often called to testify against someone accused of the mortal sin of being a member of the Communist Party.  One of these was Harvey Matusow.  A Communist who that began to work for the FBI and later testified against various people, he is notable for finally recanting his testimony, thereby casting doubt on the testimony of many other ex-communists.  His book in 1955, False Witness, led to his jailing for perjury, since the FBI and HUAC were not very happy that he had lied for them.  Later he worked with a “hippie commune” in the Seventies, and later became a Mormon.  A very interesting life and I am surprised more has not been written about him.  In his solar chart — no time of birth — the most prominent is Uranus opposite Venus — indicating his changing affections.



Harvey Matusow


Another important pillar of McCarthyism was HUAC — the House Unamerican Activities Committee.  This was created in 1938 and existed until 1975.  In the early days, under chairman Martin Dies, its main concern seems to be to bedevil Franklin Roosevelt and the New Deal.  In succeeding years, it would call purported Communists in front of the Committee and force them to name other Communists (called “Naming Names”) or refrain from doing so and then stand in contempt of Congress.  A no-win situation.  This result in the naming of Alger Hiss (helpful for a rising Congressman from California) and the blackballing of the Hollywood Ten, ten artists that were prevented from being involved with Hollywood productions, at least under their own name.   HUAC also had an important role to play in the rise of the New Left (as opposed to the Old Left of the Thirties, Forties, and Fifties that was spoiled by the Communist influence).  In fact, a movie called Operation Abolition has been made about this event.  HUAC had a committee meeting in San Francisco in 1960 (bad idea!) and many from the surrounding Bay Area turned out to protest the event.  On May 13, 1960 police officers used fire hoses to sweep the protesters down the step of the building where HUAC was meeting.  This action cause many of the students, such as those from UC Barkley, to become more politically organized and to start protesting the Vietnam war, which was only just beginning to percolate into the consciousness of some knowledgeable Americans.  The growth of the Free Speech Movement in Berkeley and many anti-war protests were a result of that anti-HUAC action. In the chart for this event against the US chart, the most noticeable aspect is Mars at the IC, the lowest point of the chart from which it can only rise; this was the beginning of the rise of those people opposed to HUAC and the things it stood for.



Operation Abolition


One of the notable members of HUAC was a Representative from California, Richard Nixon.  Nixon was chosen to run for the House from California right after World War Two, when he was opposing the incumbent Henry Voorhis.  He won after charging Voorhis with being influenced by the Communists.  He was a prominent member of HUAC during the late Forties.  In 1950 he ran for the Senate against Helen Gahagan Douglas.  He won again by charging his opponent with Communist influence, saying that she was “pink right down to her underwear.”  Pink was not quite as strong as the color red, which at that time was associated with the Red Menace of Communism, and in fact animated maps in movie newsreels would often show a red tide sweeping over Europe as the Communists in the Soviet Union took over the European continent.  At the time, no one ever doubted that a country that had lost over twenty million in the just concluded war, and whose territory had been devastated by the battle with Germany, had the wherewithal or desire to invade several other countries.  Such was the delusion that existed under the First Cold War and the miasma that was McCarthyism.  Richard Nixon went on to gain higher office as a result of his performance as a member of Congress.

Another important ingredient of McCarthyism was the Taft-Hartley Labor Act of 1947, passed over the veto of Harry Truman, even though he then used the Act numerous times. This law was attempt to roll back the gains labor had made since the New Deal, and unions opposed it.  But section 9(h), which was tacked onto the original Taft-Hartley, required noncommunist affidavits from Unions.  While it was assumed Communists in Labor Unions would just lie (thus opening them up to other charges such as perjury) what most Communist union officials did was withdraw from the Party before signing the affidavit. And Taft-Hartley allowed the anti-communists in the Unions (such as the Screen Writers Guild) to charge that their fellow members were breaking the Taft-Hartley law if they did not sign.



Taft-Hartley Act


In this chart for the signing of the Taft-Hartley Act, we first see that Saturn is close to Pluto, indicating that times are hard as the Cold War and the resultant repression is gaining steam.  Pluto is also approaching the Sun/MC midpoint of 23 Leo. Venus is on the Descendant, perhaps symbolizing that justice (Venus) is setting.  Taft-Hartley is still the law in the United States, but unions occasionally ask for its repeal.  Neptune is just past he MC and in the Tenth house during this period, suggesting the public self was somewhat deluded.

Six days later the Smith Act was passed, that prevented advocating the overthrow of the United States (by force or violence).  It was obviously aimed at Communists, but Communists insisted that they were not advocating the use of force or violence. Opponents of Communist then claimed they were lying (and used a quote of Lenin to back them up) which of course is an argument difficult to prove.

Just before these two Acts were signed, the President Harry Truman introduced what is called the Truman Doctrine, a primary document of the Cold War.  In it he pledged to contain the Soviet threat to Greece and Turkey.  Greece was undergoing a civil war, which Stalin refused to support, wherein the partisans that had helped to defeat the Fascists in the recently concluded War, and were filled with Communists, were fighting the power of the King, who was supported by the British, and as it turned out, the Americans.  The partisans lost the Civil War, but the Cold War gathered strength through the Truman Doctrine.  Many argued that if the Communists were so bad overseas then certainly they were also bad here, thus giving a boost to McCarthyism, even though that man had not yet become famous.

What is called the Marshall Plan (named after Secretary of State George Marshal) gave much money (over $100 billion in current dollars) to help rebuilt Europe after World War II, and incidentally prevent any attraction to Communism by the impoverish people of Europe after the battles of World War II had destroyed much of the infrastructure of the continent.  Part pf the push to get votes to approve the Marshall Plan required Truman to put the fear of Communism into the American people and Congress.  For more details see The Truman Doctrine and the Origins of McCarthyism by Richard M. Freeland.  In the chart for the signing of the Marshall Act, we see that the tighter Saturn Pluto conjunction has been joined by Mars so that Mars is at the midpoint of a retrograde Saturn and Pluto.




Marshall Plan

McCarthyism had many repercussions for the Unites States, many of them still unrecognized.  For example, because of the fear of having “Lost China” raised during the early Fifties, President Johnson during the next decade did not want to retreat from Vietnam for fear he would be accused of “losing Vietnam”.  During the Thirties and Forties, in part due to the influence of the Communist Party, many were interested in internationalism and imperialism, and even mainstream groups like the NAACP would connect the liberation of “Negroes” in this country with the liberation of Africans in the various countries of that continent.  Now much of that internationalism has been lost, and the ne plus ultra of leftwing thought is support for Bernie Sanders.  Woman’s history was first taught in Communist schools, and the Communist Party was fully integrated, at a time when mixing the races happened very seldom, even in the North; the idea of class was a strong component for the Communists but that focus on class has been lost as now identity politics appears to be the only politics for most of the left.  As another example, Henry Hay was an active Communists and a homosexual who married a party member out of attempt to conform.  He later founded the Mattachine Society, the first well known gay liberation organization (though of course the term was not used in 1950) and later helped found the Gay Liberation Front twenty years later.  And the decline of the unions was a direct result of McCarthyism; the highest rate of overall union employment, as seen in this graph, was in 1954 and has declined since. The current rate is the lowest in 70 years. So McCarthyism has had a large effect on the state of America even to this day.