NewsScope for September 16, 2008
Pluto Challenges Capital Markets
After the U.S. Treasury made it clear that it could not bail out Lehman Brothers last week, shares of the venerable investment bank plummeted, along with A.I.G, Washington Mutual, and other financial firms that many experts consider too big to fail. As one hedge fund president said, "You have to think of this like there's an epidemic going on—an epidemic of capital destruction."
A week ago, when Pluto turned direct in the U.S. Second House of Money, the Bush administration announced that it would take over Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the two giant mortgage lenders. Financial markets rallied, just as they did last March when the feds bailed out Bear Stearns. But this time, Pluto is heading directly into its first opposition with the U.S. Venus, while six months ago, Pluto had turned retrograde away from the opposition to the U.S. Venus.
Only in the Scorpio Rising U.S. horoscope (July 4, 1776; 2:21 pm; Philadelphia) can the astrologer make sense of the current and pending financial crisis. With financially-savvy Scorpio on the Ascendant, four planets reside in the Eighth House of Capital. Uranus and Mars relate more to the technology and military sectors of the economy. Venus and Jupiter are associated with the large investment, insurance, and banking institutions.
Several years ago, when transiting Pluto opposed the U.S. Mars, Americans found themselves embroiled in a financially draining war in Iraq. Now Pluto is set to oppose Venus five times over the coming two years, with the first due on February 27, 2009. Pluto's hard aspects often bring destruction and chaos, and as it aligns with the U.S. Venus in the money houses, one might reasonably anticipate a flood of banking failures to cascade through the financial system.
The Bush Doctrine in Pakistan
As Sarah Palin muddled though Charlie Gibson's question about the Bush Doctrine (about pre-emptive strikes), American drones and special operation commandos were crossing Afghanistan's border into Pakistan without Pakistan's permission. The targets—Taliban and Al Qaeda operatives—mingle freely with the locals, leading to increased civilian casualties, and which in turn inspires hundreds of new suicide bombers against American power.
Pakistan's horoscope (August 14, 1947; 9:33 am*; Karachi) reveals the problematic, confrontational situation now at hand: transiting Pluto has just turned direct near its IC, marking a fundamental new beginning in the nation's tumultuous path. Last week Asif Ali Zardari, the widower of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, was sworn in as the new president, replacing the disavowed U.S. ally Pervez Musharraf.
As chronicled by PBS's Frontline and as reported in last week's New York Times Magazine, Pakistan's main spy service—the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI)—is in league with the Islamic insurgency in Waziristan where Osama bin Laden is hiding. This systemic problem can be seen astrologically by the conjunction of Mars (ruling the military) with Vesta, the asteroid signifying secret agencies. Mars and Vesta are prominently placed at Pakistan's Midheaven, a position now being challenged by the opposition from transiting Pluto.
Transiting Pluto has been back and forth over Pakistan's IC twice already, with the first passage corresponding to Benazir Bhutto's assassination. Over the next three months, transiting Pluto will cross over the IC and then oppose Mars in December, undoubtedly leading to increased U.S. intervention and more civilian casualties. Not until 2010 does Pluto oppose Pakistan's Vesta, when the ISI itself will likely come under attack.
Meg Ryan in The Women
In the 2008 version of The Women, a wealthy New Yorker is the last one to know amongst her high society friends that her husband is cheating on her. Hollywood is betting that Meg Ryan can shed her recent ill-fated ventures into indies and regain her title as America's sweetheart. The all-star cast is entirely female, as it was in the original 1939 version, which starred Norma Shearer in the lead role.
Meg Ryan was born (November 19, 1961; 10:36 am; Fairfield, CT) with a Venus-Neptune conjunction right on her Midheaven, a delightful combination that won her early acclaim in romantic comedies such as When Harry Met Sally and Sleepless in Seattle. In 2000 she separated from husband Dennis Quaid as transiting Saturn opposed her Scorpio Sun.
Meg's horoscope features Saturn and Jupiter in her First House. These two planets, sometimes referred to as the "social" planets, are found in Capricorn and Aquarius respectively. Saturn is strongly placed in Capricorn, giving her an innate sense of responsibility and leadership. Jupiter in Aquarius favors equal rights for women, which Meg has expressed through several humanitarian activities.
Norma Shearer (August 10, 1902**; 10:00 am?; Montreal, Canada) shares a fascinating connection with Meg Ryan: an identical Saturn in Capricorn and Jupiter in Aquarius combo. These placements underscore the film's high society setting (Saturn) as it promotes women's roles in a male-dominated culture. In both versions of The Women Meg and Norma play women trying to figure out how to deal with the cheating husband, as they interact with their circle of best girlfriends.
*For more on Pakistan, see http://neptunecafe.com/Pakistan.html
** Norma Shearer's birth year is uncertain, and widely quoted as being 1900 and 1902.
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