For the last few cycles, (here, here, here, and here) I’ve been trying my hand at an analysis of the mundane astrology of the United States. I was inspired to do this by John Michael Greer’s efforts along the same lines, though I think he’s more practiced at this than I am. There’s rules about how we do this, which I don’t get to practice very often — really, no more than a few times a year if the astrology is accurate.
And so I turn my eye and hand to a whole-sign houses chart of March 20, 2019, at 5:48 pm local time in Washington DC. At that moment, or perps only a few seconds before, the Sun will enter into the sign of Aries from Pisces, and this becomes the snapshot or frame of reference from which we can read a bit of storytelling about the United States. The Ascendant is in Virgo, at not quite the sixteenth degree (14° Virgo 31′). Some astrology calls Virgo a “common” sign and other forms call “double-bodied’ sign,(because it’s both a woman and the sheaf of wheat she carries), akin to the modern “mutable” sign. And therefore — the chart is good for six months, until the autumnal equinox. This is the most important of the four ingresses; and while the Summer Solstice ingress might have some small changes, we can expect more of the same through the next six months. Those of you who were expecting any sort of immediate resolution to a report from Mr. Mueller are likely to be disappointed: there’s no indication that there’s going to be any significant disruption to the country’s political scene, right now — whatever is going on at the moment, is likely to continue going on for the immediately foreseeable future.
It may be worthwhile to review some of the key insights of the previous term, and see how I did before you read on, though. I did predict the following:
- A more stable government with fewer unexpected changes
- A president more focused on relations with foreign countries than domestic issues, with trade continuing to dominate.
- A president wrestling with issues of age and responsibility, and suffering from some friction with the creative classes.
- A growing sense of the people’s opposition to their president’s leadership, and to the role of the military in American society, and a growing isolationism.
- A media establishment in the Sun’s shadow — having difficulty doing anything other than reporting on the President’s business.
- An effort to liberate prisoners, establish a broad-based cannabis industry, and figure out some way of making money off of the drug industry.
- Large-scale wildfires that require almost-military intervention.
- A legal establishment under the beams, and therefore in the Sun’s shadow — a highly-powerful Presidency working to establish its own stamp on the courts and judicial system generally.
- A growing conflict or tension between older generations and younger ones — such as between BabyBoomers and Millennials (with us Gen-X’ers largely cut out of the discussion)
- An imbalance-of-benefit between the American people and foreign providers, with foreigners getting the better of the trade.
- A deflation of the value of the endeavors of the creative class — a lot of fire and flash but also a lot of confusion in the creative works the nation produces.
All in all, that’s my retroactive read on what I said three months ago when the Sun entered Capricorn. You’re welcome to read for yourself, and come to your own conclusions whether if I got it right or wrong, on your own.
Once again, The Ascendant is in the First House, in Virgo. The chart is considered accurate for six months, until the Autumnal Equinox. As a whole, it’s likely to be a time of fine-toothed combing and analysis of information — but few decisions made about that information. We can expect the nation’s experience of itself to be highly self-critical and introspective about its activities — but also hyper-focused on the rest of the world, too.
The Sun is in the 8th house, suggesting that the President and his cabinet will be aligned in goals and plans. The Sun is exalted in Aries, particularly in the first eighteen degrees, where he is “like an honored guest in the house of an allied prince.” We may expect a continuing stream of combative and aggressive statements with the Sun here in the first Decan of Aries — such statements are as likely to come from the President’s advisors and inner circle as from the President himself. The question of where the government’s money comes from, and where it goes; and the taxes paid by the President and his inner circle, are likely to be a major topic of discussion. The Sun is square, or in a combative relationship, with Saturn, Pluto, and both the South and North Nodes of the Moon — Not all of the President’s initiatives will find favor either with the nation’s elites or with the legislature — Congress will seek additional information from him and will be constantly rooting around, grabbing, and devouring his business both official and unofficial (North Node); while the nominal aristocrats will find their enthusiasm for his positions waning. Neither the energy and mining industries, nor the vast and powerful voting block of the Baby Boomers, will find the President’s initiatives on their behalf either compelling or desirable: expect pushback and lobbying against both Congress and the White House.
The Moon, just a few hours from being Full at the time of the Aries ingress, will be in nearly-complete opposition to the Sun. In the first house, below the horizon in Virgo, the Moon represents the people of the nation — for the first time since I started analyzing these charts, in their own house, in their own place of power, and turning their analytical powers on the world around them like a fully-opened eye. I think that we may expect that the citizenry of the United States may be awakening to their challenges — analyzing those difficulties and predicaments, but not yet acting upon them. An array of powers are opposed to this awakening — media, open allies to the country, and those whose fortunes depend on a quiescent public. But Virgo has traditionally represented the harvest, and the Moon is nearly out of Virgo — the harvest of the people is nearly over. The Moon is trine to the North Node and sextile to both Pluto and the South Node — the difficulty or challenge of the next six months is likely going to draw down people’s access to energy resources — oil, coal, natural gas and other forms of motive power — and hybrid fuels will be difficult to use; and yet people will need more energy than usual. We may expect that Congress will be called upon to assist, and Congress will feel a need to claim more power for itself than it has in recent years in order to effect a resolution.
Mercury, representing the media (both the news and the cultural production processes of publishing, movies, radio, and other forms of entertainment) will be under the beams, in the sense that it is retrograde and too close to the Sun to be seen. In the Seventh House, Mercury will show the media as weakly and ineffectively continuing to chase the President; they will likely be seen as in the pocket of foreign powers — even though those countries are nominally allies, for a media industry to do the bidding of other nations will strike many as tone-deaf. At the same time, Mercury will be struggling to distance itself from the presidential Sun, retrograding through the earlier degrees of Pisces — the depths of justice and good government will be rich fishing grounds for the media in the next six months. Jupiter’s presence in his own sign of Sagittarius is likely to advance generous loans of noble attention in the coming months.
Venus, representing the textile and garment and fashion industries, is found in Aquarius in the sixth house. There are going to be some new sympathies between the fashion industry and the working classes, and military inspiration is likely to appear in strongly structured garments intended to appeal to older generations. Hybrid and gender-bent clothing of various sorts — jackets that wear like shirts, suit separates, kilts, — may come into fashion, but we may also see a return to traditionalism in both working class and military garments. Gray and black may be popular colors, along with olive green and camouflage — and expect that there will be a continuing reaction against men’s clothes or fashion trends that are too feminine, as the square-by-sign between Mars and Venus plays out — fashion is not going to be regarded as a masculine concern these days. However, Venus rules the sign where Mars presently dwells, and Venus’s sympathies with the working class and the rank-and-file of the army are likely to play out on a larger stage. Venus, as a night-loving planet in the lower half of the chart, and as a dawn star, is likely to be more active than martial Mars, who cools his heels waiting for orders as an evening star.
Mars, representing both the military and manufacturing, is found late in the ninth house in the sign of Taurus, co-present with revolutionary Uranus. The next seven to eight years are going to bring broad-based disruptions to American industry and to its military, as Uranus transits through Taurus, the sign of the fecund Earth. It’s telling that just a few days ago (as Uranus entered Taurus) that Offutt Field, the home of the U.S. Strategic Command, was flooded out of operations — and Boeing’s new 737-MAX8 was grounded due to safety concerns with how the airplane’s design was vetted by both Boeing and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Both the military and US manufacturing are going through some tumultuous times in which unexpected challenges are going to provide costly reminders of the expense of getting it wrong. The next six months may see other companies and other branches of the military dealing with the unexpected consequences of bad design, bad planning, or both. Seen best in the evening after the Sun sets, Mars is likely to be vigilant but reactive to threats rather than actively aggressive — and so both the military and the manufacturing sector are unlikely to take the initiative in solving problems, preferring courtier’s solutions and whispering campaigns to the hard labor of a field bivouac.
Jupiter is in the Fourth House in the sign of Sagittarius, its own domicile. This means that the law, the judiciary, and the minority party are all going to be particularly expansive topics with a rising importance in the next six months. We shall likely see the field of Democratic presidential candidates continue to expand, and simultaneously release a volley or two of arrows intended to wrest changes in the operation of the judiciary — yet the direction of these ambitious goals may carry a kind of poison of its own. The legislative situation is complex in America right now, with the Republicans holding a majority of the Senate’s 100 seats, the Presidency, and a majority of seats both in the Supreme Court and the judiciary as a whole. This makes them the majority party — and yet in terms of raw vote totals, the Republican party has engineered their majority through drawing favorable boundaries around their overall minority.
Saturn, representing the poor and the elderly, sits in its own sign of Capricorn, co-present with the South Node and Pluto, in the Fifth House (which traditionally represents the elites or the aristocracy. In the US, this is often defined as “The 1%”, but this placement suggests a growing alignment of opinion between the elderly and poor whom Saturn stands for (perhaps the Baby Boomers), the elites, and the mining and energy industries. Currently, the Baby Boomers (those born between World War II and the early stages of the Vietnam War, roughly) account for about 75 million Americans — and as Gordon of RuneSoup has noted, roughly 10,000 of them retire each day, and will for the next twelve to fifteen years; at that point, it’s likely that somewhere around 5000 of them a day will die, as the actuarial realities of age gradually catch up with them. There are a growing number of elderly who are also poor; and a growing number of poor who have the conditions of the elderly applying to them —malnutrition, dementia and other forms of physical and mental illness.
The North and South Nodes in Cancer and Capricorn are associated with plague and fast-spreading diseases. The North Node was in Capricorn during the Plague of Athens that devastated the Greek city during the Peloponnesian War in 430 BC. Two years before the Plague of Justinian reached Byzantium itself, the North Node was in Capricorn, and the plague was ravaging the countryside around Constantinople. The Antonine Plague, or Plague of Galen, reached its height around 166AD, when the North Node was once again in Capricorn; or the 1786 outbreak of smallpox among the Great Plains Natives of North America. On the North Node in Cancer side (our current state of play), we also have some similar plague-heraldry. During the height of the Black Plague in 1348AD, the North Node was in Cancer; and we find this same configuration during the Plague of 1665 when England lost 100,000 people to the last major Bubonic Plague outbreak; and again during the influenza outbreak of 1776 when nearly two million Brits died; or the 1793-1795 yellow fever outbreak, which reached its height during the North Node’s time in Cancer. It’s worth noting that the US has experienced a number of small-to-medium outbreaks of measles, mumps, and rubella; and the CDC has announced that due to the issues surrounding the anti-vaxxer movement in the United States, it’s getting harder to contain outbreaks of potentially-dangerous diseases. The co-presence of Saturn and Pluto with the South Node in Capricorn suggests a particularly malefic and toxic potential for illness in the next six months — especially once we add in the supporting trine with Mars the lover of rashes and fevers and inflammation: wash your hands early and often in the next six months.
Neptune the lord of Ocean has some overlordship in matters involving dreams brought to fruition, but also fantasies and addiction. His presence in watery Pisces, enclosed between communicative but retrograde Mercury (debilitated in Pisces) and the Descendant and the Part of Fortune, suggests that the depths of the addiction problem in the United States have not been sufficiently plumbed. We may continue to expect states to pass laws decriminalizing medical or recreational use of cannabis; we may continue to expect that compassion-and-profit-motivated laws granting amnesty for prior cannabis-related crimes will continue to pass; and we may expect growing efforts overseas among US allies to decriminalize possession of cannabis. A lot of people are likely to get rich off of these laws; you are not likely to be among them. Expect American withdrawal from the war on drugs to reveal several open enemies — drug cartels and pharmaceutical companies not least among them.
Uranus, as already noted, is co-present with Mars in Taurus — we may expect American agriculture and food production to be regularly and frequently disrupted in the next six months; look for the sign-based favorable sextile with Saturn and Pluto to bring about several scandals involving contaminated and toxic food; but vat-grown laboratory-made meat is another possible disruption, given the house-based co-presence with manufacturing Mars. Watch for crazy food trends monthly given the house-based trine with the Moon, as well, during the next six months. Uranus also represents political upheavals, and the revolutionary planet’s co-presence with martial Mars in Taurus suggests that a furious fervor may grip the ordinarily-staid and responsible U.S. Army — normally methodical and careful and slow to act, this plodding Taurean force may dig in its hooves and start pointing the sharp end of the horn at targets that have tormented it. Mutinous is too strong a word for an unusually-loyal military force — but the Ninth House’s association with higher education, and with transportation, suggests challenges to the military’s access to college education by the GI Bill, and to the ability to manage its supply chains (see earlier notes regarding Moffutt Field in Nebraska).
Pluto, representing the mining and energy industries, is found just inside the last ten degrees of Capricorn — the hybrid fish-goat ruled by co-present and limiting Saturn the master of boundaries and endings. Drawing up the earth-powers of uranium, coal, oil, and natural gas from under the land and under the ocean, the mining and energy-production industries in the US are nearing the end of usable resources (“I use” is a common verb that describes Capricornian influences). Saturn sets limits and boundaries, and Pluto makes toxic what remains — their presence in the Fifth House suggests ongoing deals and arrangements intended to bring wealth to America’s economic elite — but the South Node is still associated with the adjective “LESS” — and so we may see that these normally-prosperous industries may bring in lower returns (or even trigger an economic bust) in the next six months. The supporting degree-based trine from Mars indicates a hard cutting-away of access to resources (a mine collapse?or a burning away of what remains (another mining platform fire in the Gulf?); and the house-based trine from Uranus suggests powerful upheaval or unexpected upset of the existing order of things. The other house-based trine, with the Moon in the First House in Virgo, suggests unpleasant news for ordinary people on an almost-monthly basis.
One final note — the Tenth House, seat of government and the reputation of the nation, is ruled by mercurial Gemini for the next six months. There will be a growing divide between the divine and immortal side of American government, and its mortal expression — the success of its Constitution, the enduring quality of its institutions and its reputation (however deserved or undeserved) for fairness and justice on the one hand; and the very human and flawed living-out of that government’s high ideals in the daily brouhaha of life in the swamp of mortal affairs. As Gemini is ruled by Mercury, we look to that planet to see how this divide will play out — and we find the swift herald retrograde and under the beams, in the Seventh House and conjunct with Neptune, in the sign of their Fall. This is akin to “a man sick and under confinement by law in an ally’s house, but the householder presently copes with a flooded basement and malfunctioning plumbing.” I take from this that the US government and its reputation shall be more affected by the mortal and human nature of its component parts in the next six months, than trying to live up to its high ideals — Mercury may want the government to work toward its lofty goals of liberty and justice for all, but he lies feeble in a sick bed under house arrest while the householder hurriedly tries to protect friends, pets and all his worldly possessions from drowning. Mercury’s friend, Jupiter, stands in a sign of his own power, Sagittarius — but square to Mercury by sign — and so far more interested in improving the specific position of the minority political party, than in helping Mercury do the necessary communication to restore divine justice.
It’s not a pretty image, of course, in a time of melting ice caps and the North Node in Cancer’s warning of plagues — two injured brothers struggling for power, their patron sick in bed and his caretaker sick of filling sandbags against a rising flood.