On Thursday August 16, 2018 “Queen of Soul” Aretha Franklin relinquished her earthly title for a spot on the Celestial Choir. Franklin, aged 76, who had been fighting pancreatic cancer for 8 years, passed away at home while on hospice care, surrounded by family and friends. Her death elicited memorials, statements, tributes and reflections on her life from across the globe.
On August 14th 2018 former “Apprentice” bete noire and White House aide Omarosa Manigault-Newman released “Unhinged: An Insider’s Account of the Trump White House”, her tell-all expose of nearly a year as Assistant to the President and Director of Communications for the Office of Public Liaison. Say that ten times fast. It’s a lot of words to identify a position that was difficult to define, but seems to have been related to her prior work with the Trump Campaign as Director of African-American Outreach.
On Tuesday, 7 August 2018, Ohio’s 12th Congressional District held a special election to replace Representative Pat Tiberi, who resigned effective January 15th to lead the Ohio Business Roundtable, despite having served as US Representative for the district for 17 years. Ohio 12 is the former seat of John Kasich, current Ohio governor and 2016 GOP presidential nomination contender. The district, which includes suburbs of Columbus and more rural counties, is a reliably Republican one, which Donald Trump won by 11 points in 2016; Tiberi won it then by 36 points, 66-30% against his Democratic challenger.
That was then, this is now.
The first of two trials of former Trump Campaign Manager Paul Manafort opened in Alexandria, Virginia on August 31st, with Manafort facing federal bank and tax fraud charges. Manafort joined the Trump campaign in March 2016 as a non-paid consultant, when the GOP nomination became a likely outcome; his expertise in politics was sought to derail a possible floor fight at the convention, smoothing Trump’s path by locking in delegates’ votes. Promoted to Campaign Manager in June, Manafort resigned under a cloud in August, allegedly because family members had become worried about the extent of his Russian connections.
Recently, some interestingly named asteroids came across my radar, thanks to a reader from Greece. With more than 17,000 named asteroids out there, it’s easy to miss a few! Some of these promise to be very useful going forward, but like anything new, they have to be tested. One of the best ways to do this is by putting them in charts the astrologer is familiar with, and seeing if they have a noticeable effect. Since I have, regrettably, been eating, sleeping and breathing Donald Trump for the past 18 months, it seemed a good place to start…
With the increased attention being paid to Trump’s Russian connections after that soul-crushing joint press conference with Vladdie Putin in Helsinki last Monday, I thought it was time to review what we know astrologically about Donald Trump’s oligarch obsession. We’ve given bits and pieces of this over the past year in several articles, but nowhere has it been assembled into a comprehensive overview.
With his background in real estate, Donald J. Trump is doubtless aware of the concept of a “balloon payment”, a one-time last-minute huge increase in disbursement before a contract term expires. If the President’s outrageous remarks at the breakfast with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on July 11th, and his subsequent trashing of British Prime Minister Theresa May in a tabloid interview on July 12th, didn’t constitute just such a payment immediately before his annual performance review with his boss Vladimir Putin, then I don’t know what would.
July 17, 2018 is the centennial anniversary of the assassination of Nicholas II, last Tsar of Russia, his wife Empress Alexandra, and their five children. Forced to abdicate in March 1917 in the aftermath of a disastrous Russian defeat in World War I, the family was held in captivity in various locations for almost 18 months, prisoners of one or another faction in the civil war which followed revolution, ending their lives in the basement of the Ipatiev House in Ekaterinburg, before an impromptu firing squad.
On Monday evening, 9 July 2018, the Reality TV President presented the “big reveal” of his second pick for the United States Supreme Court. Judge Brett Kavanaugh, 53, currently sitting on the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, has an Ivy League education, a broad range of experience, and almost 300 opinions amassed during his time on the Federal bench.
For those of you who may not be familiar, I’m not just a space rock junkie. I also manage a stray and feral cat colony in West Philadelphia; since 2007 we’ve found homes for about seventy cats, and have provided food, shelter, medical intervention and affection for several dozen more.
On Wednesday 27 June 2018, Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court Anthony Kennedy announced his retirement. The move, while not unlikely coming from the 82-year-old jurist, was unexpected, and set the capital buzzing, with Democrats and Republicans quickly forming ranks and preparing for the grueling political battle ahead.
On Friday evening, June 22nd, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and her party of seven others were asked to leave the Red Hen restaurant in Lexington, Virginia, without being served. The owner, Stephanie Wilkinson, politely ejected Sanders after restaurant staff expressed discomfort at serving the premiere spokesperson for the Trump administration.
A bizarre sidebar emerged in the migrant family separation story on Thursday, June 21st, when First Lady Melania Trump made an unannounced visit to a detention center for minors in McAllen, Texas. Both when boarding her plane in Washington, and again when disembarking upon her return, Mrs. Trump wore a green jacket emblazoned on the back with the words “I Really Don’t Care, Do U?” in white graffiti-style lettering.
OK, this is one for the books! Tem Tarriktar, publisher of “The Mountain Astrologer”, recently approached me with a cosmic challenge – find the asteroidal basis of one of the most bizarre sports-related stories of our time. On June 18th Kathy McVay was assaulted at a Philadelphia Phillies baseball game by a wild-pitch wiener launched from the team mascot’s hot dog cannon.
Two Trump-related stories came into focus in mid-June, just as the President celebrated his 72nd birthday. On the day of, June 14th, New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood gave Trump a rather unusual present, charging his charitable organization, the Trump Foundation, with state and federal charities law violations extending over a decade.
Meanwhile, controversy mounted over the Justice Department’s “zero tolerance” policy on immigration, which has been the cause of children being separated from their parents and held in detention. The debate came to a crescendo over the Father’s Day weekend,
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.
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.
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.
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.