The year 2016 is just a few months away, and I thought I’d take a look at the prominent astrological trends happening that year, especially as regards the United States. 2016 is the year we must pass through to reach the end of the decade, and for the US it is important since it is an election year, with no incumbents.
We have seen three elections recently that could shed light on how the populace feels about the state of their government. In Greece, a election recently put the maverick Syriza party in power, and expressed the disgust of Greek citizens at the austerity that had been imposed upon their country by the European Union, and especially by Germany, the strongest country in the EU. Then there was a recent election in Alberta, a province in Canada. There, the New Democratic Party (NDP) was elected to full majority of seats, defying the Conservative Party that had always been the strongest in that province and also rules Canada. Even more recently the election in Great Britain showed a large majority (only in Scotland) voted for the Scottish National Party (SNP) which deprived the Labor Party of almost half the seats from Scotland and greatly reduced its strength in Great Britain. In all these cases a third, and progressive-leaning, party took votes from the more established two parties in their respective countries. Do these elections results cast any light on the upcoming US Presidential election? The state of democracy is different in the United States. There the political landscape is controlled by two dominant right wing parties (but of course the same could be more or less said about those other countries, though in no other country is the right so all-powerful as it is in the United States), though some believe that these two political parties are just two branches of the dominant Business Party, and third progressive parties have a difficult time since a vote for them and not a vote against one of the two dominant factions involves a leap of faith, and needs large numbers of people to make the same choice at the same time, which requires trusting other people. But that is unlikely to happened in the atomized society of the US. So while the election results in these three other countries may shed some light on the US elections, that things won’t turn out nearly the same way seems more likely.
Note that I am ignoring the recent election results in the country of Israel since they are seemingly different. In that country there was a concern with growing inequality, something that is felt in many other countries, but it was overruled by national security issues, they same as may be the case in the United States, since US citizens still have a year for events to play out.
One notably transit to the US chart is Saturn over the Ascendant of the US, lasting in the whole year and being exact three times during the year. The symbolic meaning of this would be depression in showing ones true self or possibly feeling inhibited. To get a better idea, let us look at the two previous conjunctions.
The last time Saturn was on the Ascendant of the United States was in 1986. This was the second half of President Ronald Reagan’s second term , and people we becoming disillusioned with “The Gippper” as he was affectionately called for his role as football player George Gipp in the movie Knute Rockne, All American about the famous football coach of Notre Dame University. A secret operation now known as the Iran-Contra Scandal, was being played out from the White House. This should have led to Reagan’s impeachment, but of course it was unknown to the general public. Then, on October 5 of that year the pilot Eugene Hasenfus was shot down over Nicaragua and the whole scheme came out. Briefly, the US was selling weapons to the embargoed country of Iran, that had released its captured US embassy officials just as Reagan was being inaugurated, and using the money raised to supply arms for the CIA-backed paramilitary army trying to overthrow the government of Nicaragua against the will of Congress. As a result of all this Americans belief in the sanctity of their country fell greatly.
In the chart for this shootdown we see that Saturn is approaching the Ascendant of the United States, and in fact would reach that point by December. Sun is conjunction Saturn — not a good time for US propaganda — and Pluto is tightly sesquiquadrate Mars — war — as it had been for much of the year, and in fact America was engaged in a large scale war in Central America, though the public was kept in the dark about this fact.
The previous Saturn conjunct the Ascendant was in 1957. This was in the midst of the Cold War and the President was World War II hero Dwight Eisenhower. Americans believed their country was far superior to the Soviet Union, even though the Soviets had tested an atomic bomb back in 1949. Then, in August of that year, the Soviets tested the world’s first ICBM — Intercontinental Ballistic Missile — and suddenly it seemed that the Soviets could reach US shores with their atomic bombs despite US overwhelming superiority in submarine launched missiles and the many US bases surrounding the Soviet Union. Then, on October 4 the world’s first artificial satellite was launched by the Soviet Union. This again cast doubt on US superiority. A few months later an attempted launch of a US satellite failed to much embarrassment. As a result of this, United States schools were swept up in a huge urge to teach more science and math so US students could be competitive. This was an early preview of the current desire to teach the STEM — science, technology, engineering, math — in all the schools.
In the chart for the launch of Sputnik, set for the proper time in the East coast (DST), we see Saturn is again approaching the Ascendant, and Sun is again near Saturn, which makes sense since it was the same time of the year. Transiting Jupiter is conjunct transiting Sun — Americans were optimistic about the future and their superiority to the Russkies, but this was about to change.
Another important aspect is Neptune square the Ascendant of the US, which is part of a bigger complex that will come into play in the following years. This Neptune square stars in the early spring of 2016, and by late spring we have Saturn on the Ascendant and Neptune square the Ascendant, as we can see in the next chart. The Neptune square continues through the summer, as Saturn crisscrosses the Ascendant, for the last time in early October. As we can see for the Election Day chart below, Saturn is still close to the Ascendant. Perhaps the outcome of the election will not make Americans feel good about their country or themselves, unlike the election of 2008. Also in late summer and early fall Pluto retrogrades so it is widely opposite the Sun of the United States, a position it has occupies for much of the last few years, as there has been increasing criticism of the President and the Congress is held at record low esteem.
Besides the square of Neptune to the Ascendant 2016 will also see the trine of Neptune to the US Sun. These three factors will be influence the mood of the country during 2016.
The important Neptune aspects suggests, and from reading the news this is obvious, that the US will become weed crazy in the following years. The capitalists have begun to be interested in marijuana, and once the capitalists are involved it is difficult to hold back. Lenny Bruce, the acerbic comedian of the 1950s and 1960s, and a forerunner of many comedians today, once said that marijuana will become legal once the lawyers started smoking it. In this he was wrong. It now appears what pushed the envelope was some Baby Boomers started turning 65 and they realized they needed the aid of a plant they were familiar with when younger to help with the aches and pains they felt as the grew older. This coupled with a younger generation that was influenced by the drug war propaganda (but not in a positive direction) they got as young people tipped the balance, as was mentioned by an earlier post.
The last time Neptune was in a similar position was in 1853 and 1854, shortly after a Uranus-Pluto conjunction. This was a few years after Prohibition has been passed in the state of Maine (same link as above) and in began to spread to other states, ultimately culminating in the passage of National Prohibition in 1919, which took place the next year. This had a large affect on the country, though I don’t know if everyone would consider it positive. Among the many changers to the country was a widespread ignoring of the law, much corruption, and the rise a criminal gangs.
But these two aspects occur at the same time, as this next chart illustrates. Here is one with Saturn square Neptune, with Saturn quite exactly on the Ascendant of the US and Neptune closely square the Ascendant of the US. We have discussed in the past the hard aspects of Saturn and Neptune, and here is yet another one. This hard aspect is also closely connected to the US. In this case this aspect suggests that America will realize that some policies or beliefs it has followed are no longer serving the country. We can already see this happening; there are so many beliefs that are coming under scrutiny now, the list is long. The war on Drugs and how the police interact with communities is coming under increasing criticism as people ask more and more questions. These are even spreading to the presidential campaigns of both Democrats and Republicans, while it has been a major topic of third parties for a long time.
A long term aspects, over the last few years, has been Pluto opposite the Sun of the United States. This has lasted so long since Pluto moves so slowly. The last exact pass will be in the fall of this year as goes stationary on the US Sun. But there is one further close pass in October of next year and, as you can see from the next chart, at this point Mars conjuncts Pluto. While the opposition with the Sun is not exact, the square with the US Saturn is very close. This also accentuates the natal Sun square Saturn of the US. As one can imagine, Sun-Mars combinations are not very pacific — Ebertin gives the phrase “force, brutality”. Pluto opposite the Sun has seen intense opposition to the President, and the government in general, over the last few years. As evidence, if any is needed, just look at the low esteem those institutions are held by the populace, as shown in many polls. With this final Mars-Pluto opposite the Sun in the weeks before the election, one can expect to see fervent opposition displayed in the country.
Finally we have a graphical ephemeris for the entire year. In this we can see Saturn first crossing the Ascendant at the beginning of the year, and then crossing it again in June just as Neptune also squares the Ascendant (black arrow) and then crossing it a third time in October (red arrow). Meanwhile, we see the Uranus-Pluto square close at the beginning of the year and the Pluto and Mars conjunct near the US Sun later in October (green arrow).