With Uranus moving up to its first exact square to Pluto in June, we can expect the sense of crisis to keep coming back. The times are about crises and their resolution, rather than about normality. No effective solution has yet been provided for Italy’s problems. I don’t know quite what governs the timing of the crises around Italy. Sometimes it seems like a background problem, sometimes like a crisis that could bring down the whole world economy. But the fundamentals remain the same.
You can always read different explanations as to why these southern European countries are in trouble. But it seems that neither the Italian public nor the Italian government have been particularly reckless with their spending. The problem seems to be an economy that is poorly regulated and lacking in modernisation. Investors are therefore not confident that Italy can grow its way out of its current levels of debt.
It is very hard to know what is going to happen. It really could go a number of ways, all described by the symbolism of Uranus-Pluto. Ultimately, we can expect a renewal (Pluto), with many shocks and unexpected turns (Uranus) along the way. It may be that Italy goes under, followed by Spain, the Eurozone breaks up, and there is a banking crisis that plunges the world back into recession until the end of the Uranus-Pluto crossings in 2015.
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I was writing before Christmas about how the EU was displaying the classic signs of a Pluto transit in its first stage, of the life-energy having been drained from a status quo that was no longer tenable, and that the EU was now going through the motions of a vision no-one believed in any more. I drew the conclusion that the EU would fall apart. That may still happen, but also possible is a renewal (the later stage of a Pluto transit) based on stronger foundations. It has been the provisional vision of Europe that has been taken apart, the Europe that wanted economic union without political union. That has been the meaning of this transit.
It will still be a rocky, Uranian path. And there are further crises to face. But I’m starting to think that the outcome of this crisis will be renewal rather than dissolution. It will still be a while before the world is properly out of the Great Recession. But a collapse of the Euro would lead to something much worse, and I don’t think that would do any good, however much we may dislike the present system, and however unsustainable it may be in the long-term.
You just can’t tell with these outer planet transits. You know the overall shape of the transition. With Pluto, you know there will be a dissolution of that which does not have strong foundations, and possibly renewal afterwards. But you don’t know at what point. Quite often, the major events in a transit occur before any exact crossings, and the rest of the transit is about processing those events. So it is quite possible that we have seen the major destructive events of Uranus-Pluto as far as Europe is concerned. The rest of the transit will be the difficult path of absorbing those events.
Looking at the big 3, China is not in recession and never was: Uranus-Pluto seems to be describing the rise and rise of the country. The USA is not in recession and there are encouraging signs, like the reduction in unemployment last month, and like General Motors regaining its place as the world’s largest car-maker. It is just Europe that remains in trouble, but I think the world can handle that (even though Europe is the largest of the big 3) providing it continues to sort the debt problem.
Politically, the picture is something else. Pluto and Uranus are hard-aspecting the Suns and other significant points of all the major powers, including the EU as a body. To survive economically, profound political change is needed in Europe, particularly in the form of surrender of individual sovereignty. It’s only the UK and Hungary that are not prepared to go there.
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It is interesting what may happen here in the UK, because Scotland may vote in favour of independence in 2 years time. The 1801 chart for the UK shows an inherently unstable union, with natal Uranus conjunct the Asc and square Sun and MC, all in early cardinal, which is where Uranus and Pluto are now hitting. This is so powerful that it is almost a test of whether astrology is actually real: of course the UK will split up. And where will that leave once mighty England – without its Empire, without Ireland and unable even to hang onto Scotland? England has a strong financial industry, and the fear is that in joining the Euro much of our business will drift to Frankfurt. But the world is changing, England’s power is diminishing all the time, and Europe is becoming a much less provisional place: you will be either in or out. England’s sense of who it is will be going through a big change in the next few years, and Europe may come to seem the natural option.
So what we are seeing with the Arab Spring is the sweeping away of long-standing political structures that no longer express the will of the people. But it would be blinkered to assume that what people want is western-style democracy. It may, in some cases, be like that. But we don’t really know, they are a long way away and they think differently to us. What we CAN tell, from the astrology, is that these people are re-birthing themselves, that something very new (Uranus in Aries) is ready to come into existence. And there is probably a common pattern. But we won’t really know for a few more years, as there is a lot more change still to come as Uranus and Pluto do their 3 years of exact crossings.
I expect to see major transits in the chart of a leader, that power them through their time in office. Barack Obama has had Neptune squaring his MC and will go on to have Neptune squaring his Moon over the next few years. So providing nothing happens to him (and with Uranus starting to trine his Sun, and having been sworn in under a Void Moon, something could happen), he would seem likely to again be President, which doesn’t mean it won’t be a tight race.
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But what about Uranus-Pluto more generally in America? You expect some sort of systemic change. As with Europe, the change may be political. The US has a fault line that caused its credit rating to be downgraded for the first time last year, because the agencies did not trust that the US had the political capacity to sort out its budget shortfall. The fault line seems to be caused by the right wing of the Republican Party’s determination to push its own agenda at the expense of the country being able to function.
It is interesting that Newt Gingrich has re-surfaced at this time, because it was under his tenure as Speaker of the House of Representatives in the 1990s that attempts were made to impeach and remove from office Bill Clinton, a Democratic President. Gingrich stands for this fault line, this Republican extremism that will not let a Democratic President be President.
It is exactly this sort of instability in the foundations of an institution that Pluto transits address. The US Sun at 13 Cancer is 4 or more degrees on from the Cardinal degrees of the sensitive points in Europe (eg the UK with Asc/MC/Sun at 7-10 degrees). The US is therefore a couple of years behind Europe with its pressure for Uranus-Pluto change. Europe has it now, whereas we can expect the US issues to have that sort of intensity in 2 to 3 years time.
If a Republican is elected President this year, then the fault line will not be exposed. If Obama is re-elected, then we will almost certainly see the Republican right wing making it as difficult as they can for him to govern. But they will go too far, and it will result in a constitutional crisis. It will be a Pluto survival issue, for America has to be able to govern itself. This, from the present standpoint, seems to be a likely meaning of Uranus-Pluto for America.
So you could say that the Republican right stands for the barbarism behind the democratic, civilised facade. In this way, Uranus-Pluto could involve a soul-searching for the US, brought about by a clash on the national stage between these 2 elements. America's ideals are real, and the election of a black President shows that. But the barbarism is also real, and if this coming election is Gingrich vs Obama, then you will have 2 candidates who stand for this divide. More than most elections, it will reveal America's conflicted nature, and it could get ugly. But it is exactly that sort of clash of extremes that Uranus-Pluto produces, and that because of its intensity can eventually result in some sort of resolution. Last summer's battle over the budget, while nothing new, came at a very significant time, and could be the start of a bigger political war in the coming years.