On Tuesday June 12th, 2018, US Representative Mark Sanford (R-SC) lost his primary bid for reelection, in a hotly contested race which went to his rival, state representative Katie Arrington, who had been endorsed by Donald Trump. Although Sanford had an 87% record of voting with the White House on the issues, he had also been deprecating about some of the Commander-in-Chief’s more egregious Tweets and statements, and Trump had trashed him in a fit of presidential pique.
If Donald Trump maintains his grasp on the US presidency for the duration of his upcoming solar year, then he will likely complete his first term in office. He may even win reelection. But looking ahead at the year on tap, that’s a huge “if”. This appears to be the pivotal year for Trump, the one that decides how the remainder of his life unfolds.
Two celebrity suicides shocked the world in the first week of June 2018. Kate Spade, New York fashion designer and sister-in-law of actor David Spade, was found hung by a scarf in the closet of her Manhattan apartment on June 5, and Anthony Bourdain, celebrity chef, food critic and global travel guide, was found unresponsive in his Strasbourg, France hotel room, an apparent suicide, on June 8.
A few months ago I joked with a friend that the myriad bizarre stories coming out of the Trump administration had begun to read like something out of Chaucer – call them the “Trumperbury Tales” – stories which were individual, varied and specific, but tangentially related by a common venue, in the Oval Office. But the recent spate of presidential pardon-related stories seems to put us on a level playing field with the great medieval poet, in a direct comparison with Chaucer’s “The Pardoner’s Tale.”
On Monday June 4th, 2018, a much-anticipated ruling came down from the US Supreme Court. By a 7-2 majority, the justices upheld the right of a Colorado baker to refuse services to a gay couple, based in his religious beliefs. The case centered on a 2012 incident when David Mullins and Charlie Craig approached Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop in Lakewood, Colorado, and asked him to bake a cake for their wedding.
At 2:45 AM on May 29, Roseanne Barr, star of the eponymous reboot of the classic ‘90s sitcom, tweeted: “muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby = vj”. The “VJ” in question referred to Valerie Jarrett, an African American former senior advisor to Barack Obama, and the Tweet generated an immediate controversy as racist. Barr tweeted an apology a few hours later and deleted the post, but at 1:55 PM, ABC announced that her show had been cancelled, labelling the tweet “abhorrent.”
On Tuesday, May 22, 2018, Georgia State Representative Stacey Abrams became the first female African American to win a major party nomination for Governor, defeating opponent Stacey Evans in what became known as the “battle of the Staceys”. If she wins in November, she will be the first black female governor in the US.
On Saturday 19 May 2018, Prince Harry of Wales and American actress Meghan Markle will wed in St George’s Chapel, Windsor. Vows will be taken at noon, before a comparatively small (by royal standards) company of some 600 friends and relatives, after which the couple will drive on a two-mile procession through the town, followed by a reception hosted by the Prince’s grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II.
There are two principal sources to which Trump Resisters look for relief from the malaise, corruption and chaos which is the current administration: Special Counsel Robert Mueller, leading the FBI investigation into Russian involvement in the 2016 presidential campaign; and lawyer Michael Avenatti, representing adult film star Stormy Daniels, with two civil lawsuits against the president. The two men could not be more different, but both present significant dangers to the completion of the Trump presidency.
There are once again new players in the ongoing shitshow that is the Trump administration. As Troemper came to station in late April, Trump announced a major shake-up in his legal team. On April 19, former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani, a close Trump confidante during the campaign who thus far had been frozen out of employment in the administration, joined the motley crew representing the president in his myriad legal difficulties. On May 2 Ty Cobb, lead counsel responding to the Mueller investigation, announced his retirement, to be replaced by Emmet Flood, formerly Bill Clinton’s counselor during his impeachment proceedings. I think we can all see where this is headed…
On April 28, 2018, the rearward-traveling asteroid Troemper comes to a standstill in the heavens, turns, and resumes direct motion. Our celestial referent for Donald Trump, Troemper has been in retrograde motion since January 30th, when it stationed at 2 Libra, conjunct Trump’s natal Neptune at 5 Libra and squared natal Whitehouse at 4 Capricorn. This natal square says much about the ongoing muddle, disorder and deception proceeding from Trump’s Oval Office tenure, and the ensuing period has arguably been one of increased confusion, isolation and paranoia or perceived persecution (all Neptune keywords), affecting both the President (Troemper) and the administration (Whitehouse).
Early on Monday, April 9th, the FBI raided the Manhattan office and hotel room of Donald Trump’s personal lawyer and confidante, Michael Cohen, known as Trump’s “fixer.” For a decade Cohen has acted as Trump’s consigliere, smoothing rough patches and paying out hush money to who knows how many of his sexual partners (Steve Bannon once characterized this as “hundreds”). Cohen, in short, knows where all the bodies are buried.
EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt has come under heavy fire recently for alleged abuses of taxpayer money in his extravagant, sometimes paranoid, expenditures. Pruitt maintains a vast security detail of more than 20, operating on an expanded 24-hour schedule, and overtime pay for several agents has already reached the yearly cap, just four months into 2018.
On Sunday evening, 25 March 2018, TV’s premiere news magazine, “60 Minutes”, aired an interview with Stephanie Clifford, AKA Stormy Daniels, the adult film star who alleges a 2006 affair with Donald Trump, and who was paid $130,000 by his lawyer, scant weeks before the 2016 election, to keep quiet about it.
The White House announced Thursday evening, March 8th that President Donald Trump had agreed to meet face to face for talks with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, tentatively in May 2018. The decision, apparently made on the spur of the moment without resort to advisors or experts, will, if adhered to, lead to the first personal meeting of an American President and a North Korean leader, since that state’s establishment in 1948.
Like any other entity, a presidential administration has a birth chart. And if you have a birth chart, you’ve also got a Solar Return, which can provide clues to the astrological weather for the year ahead.
On Friday, January 12th, the “Wall Street Journal” reported that in October 2016, Donald Trump’s lawyer Michael Cohen paid $130,000 in hush money to Stephanie Clifford, AKA “Stormy Daniels”, an adult film star with whom Trump allegedly had an affair in 2006, after his marriage to Melania.
As defined by the Twentieth Amendment to the US Constitution, passed in 1933, each administration begins at 12 noon on January 20th of the year following a presidential election. Thus, all US administrations (unless they succeed mid-term due to the death or resignation of a sitting president) have essentially the same structural dimensions: a Sun at 0 Aquarius conjunct a late Capricorn Midheaven and a mid-Taurus Ascendant.