Michael Bloomberg’s Valentine

When I caught a glimpse of the cover of this week’s New Yorker (dated Feb. 7, 2011), I couldn’t help but chuckle. It shows New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg admiring himself in a heart-shaped mirror with a bottle of champagne and a box of Valentine’s chocolates on the vanity. Why would I laugh?

Because I’m an astrologer, and I know that Bloomberg was born on Valentine’s Day. So this is a case of art imitating life and a perfect example of what psychologist Carl Jung called “synchronicity.”

Mike Bloomberg for President?

The news wires are buzzing over a New York Post Page Six item today that says President Obama is looking at New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg as a possible replacement for Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner. Mercury is retrograde so I won’t get too excited about this story. However, I’ve been keeping an eye on Bloomberg’s chart as we approach the 2012 Presidential elections. Here’s the cranky Aquarian’s chart, with transits for Nov. 6, 2012.

A quick observation: The North Node at 26 degrees of Scorpio on Election Day squares Bloomberg’s natal Sun. In Uranian astrology, which I’m a fan of, that’s as powerful as a conjunction. Also, his natal Sun makes a conjunction with the U.S. Moon in Aquarius.

I know that Bloomberg, a self-made billionaire, isn’t running for President, but in true Uranian fashion, he’s a wild card who can’t be ruled out of the game. He’s liberal on social issues and conservative on fiscal issues, and his friends (and his mother!) know that he has a secret desire to be the nation’s first Jewish president.

Vanessa Redgrave: A Mother’s Grief

The death of celebrated actress Natasha Richardson after a fall on the Quebec ski slopes has brought incalculable pain to her family and her fans.

Her husband Liam Neeson, her two sons, her sister Joely Richardson, and her aunt Lynn Redgrave have all suffered a tremendous loss.

However, as a Moon/Saturn opposition, my thoughts go to her mother, Aquarian Vanessa Redgrave. According to astro.com, she was born at 6 p.m. and has a 24-degree Leo rising, which is being opposed by Neptune right now.

I will post more about this amazing woman, but I wanted to put her chart up tonight and say, “Our prayers are with you.”

Any comments or analysis are greatly appreciated.

Check Out the Mindful Walker!

Susan DeMark, a friend of mine with a nearly exact opposition of Mercury in Capricorn and Uranus in Cancer, has launched a new Web site called Mindful Walker. I quietly added it to my blogroll about a week ago, but now Susan’s ready to spread the word about her new “baby.”

I think Susan’s timing is perfect. With Pluto about to move into Capricorn, we’ll be taking time to notice and enjoy our surroundings, from Manhattan’s Fred R. French Building to the ‘Gunks of New Paltz, N.Y., to use two examples that are near and dear to Susan’s heart.

Susan has lots of plans for Mindful Walker. She told friends in an e-mail: “I’ll be adding photos within posts, other media and interactivity, Google map links, Google ads, etc… My plan is to expand in Phase 2.0 during the coming year into possibilities like podcasts and/or video. I have different content conceptions that I will build on, like 15-minute walks, “5 Top” this and that, and children’s walks.”

What I’m really excited about, is the section of her Web site called “Mindful Activist,” which she says “will promote various issues and encourage actions people can take (like saving the world from sprawl).” Can you tell that Susan is a community-oriented Aquarian?

Next year, when Jupiter is in Aquarius, Susan plans to introduce Mindful Walker excursions and workshops. Kudos to you, Susan.

Paul Newman, 1925-2008: Nobody’s Fool


I’m reposting an updated version of something I wrote back in June, when it was first reported that Paul Newman was suffering from cancer. Newman passed away Friday.

Even at the age of 83, Paul Newman was still my favorite bad boy. Unlike James Dean, he stayed alive, and unlike Marlon Brando, he managed to live his life off-screen in an inspiring manner.

He married a class act, Joanne Woodward, and stayed married for 50 years. He started Newman’s Own, the food company that has donated $200 million of its profits to charity, and he funded the Hole in the Wall Gang Camp for terminally ill kids. And the race car driving! Talk about living the life you want.

A cool Aquarius born Jan. 26, 1925, Newman had a Capricorn stellium of Jupiter, Mercury, and Venus on his Ascendant. The combo showed up in his childhood — his father owned a successful sporting (Jupiter) goods store (Cap) and in his movies — ones about the legal system (Jupiter) like The Verdict and ones about racing (Mercury) like Winning, which prompted Newman to take up the sport in real life.

The Jupiterian sports theme was also evident in the aptly named Somebody Up There Likes Me (a boxing film that was supposed to star James Dean until he died), Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (ex-football player), The Hustler (pool), and Slap Shot (hockey).

Because the Jupiter/Mercury/Venus lineup was in Capricorn, Newman continued to work well after he acquired wrinkles and gray hair, a rarity in youth-dominated Hollywood. And, as commenter GianPaul points out, it’s square Mars in Aries, injecting an element of sexy danger.

The Cap lineup opposed Pluto in Cancer in the seventh house of relationships. Here was a very intense guy who forged lasting alliances with both business and romantic partners.

Given that Cancerian (food) emphasis in the seventh house of partnerships, I get a chuckle when I remember Newman’s response when an interviewer asked why he remained married in spite of the temptations that beckon a superstar actor: “I have steak at home, why go out for hamburger?” is what Newman told Playboy magazine.

Underneath the bravado, Newman was sensitive, with a Pisces Moon, which was conjunct Woodward’s Sun. Meanwhile, her Aquarius Moon was on his Sun. They had the classic marriage indicator — Sun/Moon conjunction — going in both directions. In a world where the word “soulmates” gets overused, Newman and Woodward were the real thing.

When I was reading an article about Newman in the September Vanity Fair, I was struck by his description of his relationship with Woodward. “Joanne has a habit of rationalizing [Aquarius], and when she starts that, that’s when I turn ugly! But when she tells me what she instinctively feels [Pisces], I pay very close attention.”

Interesting that the Aquarian gets annoyed when his Aquarius Moon wife starts “rationalizing,” but responds when she expresses her feelings, mirroring his Pisces Moon.

The amazing synastry between Newman and Woodward prompted many astrologers to write journal articles and give conference presentations on Newman and Woodward. (Synastry is astrologese for compatibility.)

Rather than live in the limelight of Tinseltown, Newman and Woodward escaped to small-town America to raise three daughters — Claire, Elinor (Nell), and Melissa. Newman had two daughters — Susan and Stephanie — from a previous marriage, as well as a son, Scott, who died of an accidental drug overdose in 1978. The residents of Westport, Conn., respected the privacy of their town’s biggest celebrities, according to this poignant story from the Associated Press.

Looking at recent transits to Newman’s chart, his natal Neptune in Leo, which squared Saturn in Scorpio, was being opposed by transiting Neptune, North Node, and Chiron in Aquarius during his fight with cancer.

Jupiter in Capricorn was on Newman’s Ascendant when he died. As we students of astrology know, people leaving the earth often have “happy” transits. Saturn and Pluto show up in the charts of the survivors, usually making aspects to the personal planets or the angles.

My French astropal, Claire Courts at AstroRevolution, has a good analysis of the transits to Newman’s chart when he passed away.

Here’s the chart from AstroDataBank.

I’d be hard-pressed to say which Paul Newman film is my favorite. Certainly, not the classic Seventies buddy flicks he did with Robert Redford, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and The Sting, though I loved them at the time. Not edgy enough for me. I’ve narrowed it down to Hud, Cool Hand Luke, and The Hustler.

In his later years, I loved the reprise of The Hustler that he did with Tom Cruise, The Color of Money, which won him his sole best actor Oscar.

A special place is reserved for Newman’s collaboration with Woodward in Mr. and Mrs. Bridge, produced by the art film champions Ishmael Merchant and James Ivory. The two play a bourgeois WASP couple from Kansas City who try to keep their marriage on even keel.

I had the pleasure of meeting Newman once at an Indian restaurant that Merchant owned next to the Paris Theatre in New York in the mid-Nineties. Those blue eyes were truly incredible. I’ll never forget them. Ditto for the sly grin when you first spot him across the room, the one that says, “Yeah, it’s me.”

As an old college buddy pointed out when I first posted this riff, Newman was the perfect curmudgeon in the film adaptation of the Richard Russo novel Nobody’s Fool. Filmed in the town where I live, Beacon, N.Y., Fool helped kick-start the revitalization of Main Street after the film studio paid for some refurbishing. Interesting that with this connection between Newman and my hometown, his stellium of Cap planets falls on the cusp of the fourth house, while rules the home.

Millions of children who may not know Newman for his charismatic screen presence probably can recognize his voice. He vivified a Hudson Hornet in Pixar’s Cars. In that animated film, Newman was the voice of Doc Hudson, the mayor in the town of Radiator Springs. Ole Doc has a thing or two to teach whippersnapper Lightning McQueen, whose voice was provided by Owen Wilson.

The slogan for Cool Hand Luke, which was uttered by a prison warden in the film and has since become part of the American lexicon, was: “What we’ve got here is a failure (pronounced “fail-yuh”) to communicate.”

There was never a failure to communicate between Newman and his audiences. Fans got the testosterone-injected message loud and clear. Men wanted to be cool, tough, and later, worldly-wise like him. And women? We all know what women wanted.

Geena Davis Will Play Sarah Palin in the Movie

Somebody else in the blogosphere may have noticed this resemblance, but after watching Sarah Palin’s speech last night at the Republican National Convention, it suddenly dawned on me who she reminded me of.

No, not Sandra Bullock in Miss Congeniality, as suggested by New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd. No, not Saturday Night Live’s Tina Fey, as noted by StarIQ’s Michael WolfStar.

I think Sarah Palin is a dead ringer for fellow Aquarian Geena Davis, who played Mackenzie Allen, the first female President of the U.S., in the short-lived ABC TV series Commander in Chief, which ran during the 2005-06 season. According to the Wiki, Allen becomes commander-in-chief after her boss dies in office from a sudden cerebral aneurysm. Are you listening, John McCain?

Born on Jan. 21, 1956, Davis is nearly a decade older than McCain’s vice-presidential pick Palin, but is surprisingly youthful. What they both share is a toothy grin, a no-nonsense manner, and a square between an Aquarian Sun and Neptune in Scorpio (nearly exact in the case of Davis.)

You can look at Davis’ chart here.

Commander in Chief started off on a high note, and was the No. 1 rated TV show on Tuesday nights until it got knocked from the top spot by American Idol, according to the Wiki. After last night’s triumphant speech by Palin, Davis should get her agent on the phone to Disney, which owns ABC, and try to revive Commander in Chief.

But maybe life will imitate art and Palin will lose steam the way that Commander in Chief did. As numerous commentators have pointed out, Palin’s got transiting Neptune on her Aquarius stellium of Sun/Mars/Saturn, so her dreams could dissolve.

I’ve seen some provocative photos of Palin on the Net, including one where she’s wearing a tight T-shirt that says, “I may be broke, but I’m not flat busted.” This particular snapshot is being disseminated by a leftie friend of mine. For some reason, many liberals have decided that women are cheating in the battle of the sexes if they flaunt their femininity.

I’m amazed that the Madonna/whore schism is still alive and well in this country. I’ve got Moon quincunx Venus in my chart so reconciling the many faces of Eve is part of my life’s work.

With all my Sag, I can laugh at bawdy T-shirts, but I wonder whether there aren’t some racier pics or videos of the former beauty pageant contestant floating around since her natal Neptune (film) in Scorpio (sex) squares her Aquarius (Internet, collective) stellium. Still, French First Lady Carla Bruni has that issue and it hasn’t hurt her popularity.

Sarah Palin has brains, beauty, and brawn (she was nicknamed “Sarah Barracuda” for her aggressive basketball moves in high school), and she’s not afraid to use all three to get what she wants. What’s wrong with that?

I don’t share her views that abortion shouldn’t be permitted even in cases of rape and incest and that creationism should be taught in public school but not sex education. In my view, all of these beliefs surrender feminine power to a patriarchal father figure, which is consistent with Palin’s Jupiter in Aries.

This is the same aspect, incidentally, that prompted Palin to declare that U.S. troops are in Iraq on a “task that is from God.” Funny, that’s the rationale that Islamic terrorists use for their jihad against the U.S. Isn’t it great that God is on everyone’s side?

Whatever surfaces about Palin’s past, we must keep in mind that her Sun/Mars/Saturn triple conjunction in Aquarius falls on the U.S. Moon. She’s going to force us to examine our stereotypes about the role of women and highlight the contradictory beliefs about female sexuality held by conservatives and liberals alike.

What we saw last night in Palin’s speech emphasizing small-town roots and family values is the presence of her North Node at 10 degrees of Cancer on the U.S. Sun. Her message resonated with the American people.

Like the audience at the feel-good film Juno a couple of years ago, we want everything to turn out O.K. for Bristol Palin, Sarah’s 17-year-old daughter who is five months pregnant. Let’s hope Bristol gets a happy ending the way the teenage mom did in Juno.

As Maureen Dowd and others have noted, Sarah Palin is a modern-day Cinderella — a hockey mom active in the PTA who ends up as the GOP’s vice-presidential candidate. What’s not to love? I can hear my husband in the background doing his imitation of Bill Murray in Caddy Shack: “It’s a Cinderella story…”

As an astrologer and a follower of Carl Jung, I revel in mythology, symbolism, and Hollywood plots. Life does imitate art and vice versa. That’s why Frank Rich’s pedigree as a theater critic makes him such an insightful political columnist for The New York Times.

But we must not get so wrapped up in the story line that we lose sight of the 299 million extras in this larger-than-life drama — the man struggling to find work after his factory job got outsourced to China, the seniors forced to choose between paying for expensive medications or heating the house this winter, and the single mom who is raiding the piggybank to buy school supplies for her son.

We can’t afford to leave them on the cutting room floor.

Is Sarah Palin in It for the Long Haul?

I’ve been doing a little more work on Republican vice-presidential nominee Sarah Palin’s chart today, especially in light of the revelation that her 17-year-old daughter Bristol Palin is pregnant. People like Rush Limbaugh have been speculating about a baby in the White House next year, but I don’t think this is what they had in mind.

Given the downbeat start to the Republican National Convention in Minneapolis because of Hurricane Gustav, I’m going to run something up the flagpole: I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Alaska governor gracefully withdraw as McCain’s running mate because of family obligations.

In addition to having to spin the media coverage about her pregnant daughter, Palin is also being dogged by the “Troopergate” allegations, part of another family soap opera.

The New Moon that heralded her candidacy took place on her natal Uranus. Transiting Saturn is nearby, so she got the call from Old Man McCain and she said yes. But with Uranus in the picture, she could also back out.

Neptune is on her Sun, so she’s confused. She might not know if she really wants to do this.

Palin’s got a Sun/Mars/Saturn conjunction in Aquarius so she works hard and she can meet any challenge that comes her way. She also has Jupiter conjuncting her Aquarius stellium next year, which will increase her visibility in the world.

But if Palin does change her mind, it’s a win/win situation for everybody. Palin’s become a household word overnight and McCain and his supporters get to pat themselves on the back for nominating a woman. Good job, guys!

Here’s Palin’s natal chart, birth time set for 4:40 p.m., a time that is circulating among astrologers, and transits and progressions set for Aug. 29.

I’m not making any predictions here. I’m just saying Uranus sometimes leads to sudden flipflops, that’s all.

Who is Sarah Palin and Why is Her Daughter Pregnant?

Aug. 29 was John McCain’s 72nd birthday and it was also the day he revealed his vice-presidential choice to the world. As anyone who reads this blog knows, I wasn’t surprised by McCain’s choice of Sarah Palin.

We’re moving to a Saturn/Uranus opposition that is exact on Election Day. Democratic candidate Barack Obama signifies Uranus to me because of his skin color and his sudden success. To balance his ticket, he picked Saturnian Senator Joe Biden, who brings lots of Washington connections and experience to the ticket.

McCain personifies Saturn because of his age and his conservatism. It seemed natural that he was going to pick a surprising (Uranus) running mate — either a woman or Democrat-turned Independent Joe Lieberman. In addition to Palin, I had speculated that Maine Senator Olympia Snowe was a possibility for astrological reasons.

Now that McCain has made his choice, everyone wants to know more about Palin, the Alaska governor who was born Feb. 11, 1964 in Sandpoint, Idaho. As expected, Jude’s Threshold came out of the gate quickly with her post on Palin.

You can read Jude’s post here.

As Jude and her commenters point out, the stellium of Neptune, North Node, and Chiron in Aquarius has been transiting Palin’s Sun/Mars/Saturn stellium in Aquarius. This can undermine her professional status, according to Reinhold Ebertin’s The Combination of Stellar Influences, but it also can signify weakness and involvement with health care.

Palin gave birth to a baby with Down syndrome, Trig Paxson, in April, and is unabashedly pro-life. Abortion wasn’t an option for her when she learned during her pregnancy that her son would have special needs.

Palin’s husband is a former employee of oil company BP but now works as a commercial fisherman (Neptune). According to Wiki, she has been a strong proponent of energy (Neptune) development in Alaska but also has helped pass new taxes on oil company profits.

Palin’s Sun/Mars/Saturn stellium in Aquarius touches the U.S. Moon, though how tight the connection is depends on which U.S. chart you use. She could get the people (Moon) “fired up,” but she could also anger (Mars) them, especially if she becomes an authority figure (Saturn) for them.

The choices that Palin has made in her life — competing in a beauty pageants (she was runner-up in the Miss Alaska contest), hunting game, and joining the National Rifle Association — promise to spark (Mars) controversy about the role of women (U.S. Moon) in our society and shine light on our stereotypes, both liberal and conservative.

Palin’s Sun/Mars/Saturn equals the U.S. Moon came into play on Sept. 1 when the McCain campaign announced that the vice-presidential nominee’s 17-year-old daughter, Bristol Palin, is pregnant. She plans to keep her child and eventually marry the father.

This turn of events continues the theme highlighted in the U.S. Summer Solstice chart: concern about teenage pregnancy. It echoes some of the brouhaha about the spate of pregnancies at Gloucester (Mass.) High School that made national headlines shortly after the Solstice.

I’ve blogged about why pregnancy is such a hot-button issue in this country. You’ll find my musings here.

McCain has made a brilliant choice with Palin. Her conservative values appeal to the Christian right, but her independent spirit and working mom ethos can help McCain pick up some Democratic supporters of Hillary Clinton who can’t get themselves to vote for Obama.

The downside? Palin’s relative youth and vitality make McCain appear old by contrast. At his press conference to announce Palin, his face appeared miraculously free of wrinkles for a man of his age, but strangely immobile, perhaps because of recent Botox treatments.

Palin’s relative lack of experience drew criticism from those concerned that she doesn’t have the credentials to become President should McCain die in office.

It’s going to be an interesting election. If you divide the country along the Mississippi River, the Obama-Biden ticket represents the Eastern half of the U.S., while the McCain-Palin duo comes from the Western part.

Historically, the tensions in this country have been between North and South. Perhaps we are moving into a period where the schism is between East and West.

The late Tim Russert gets credit for coining the term Red States/Blue States to describe the divide between Republicans and Democrats. According to the Wiki, most of the Red States carried by Republicans in the last few elections are in the West, but there are many in the South.

Kim Novak, Astrology, and Search Engines

This is really weird. On Tuesday night, my husband and I watched Kim Novak and Fred MacMurray in a great film noir called Pushover on Turner Classic Movies. Yesterday, I was looking at Novak’s chart and noticing that the August 16 eclipse falls quite close to her 24-degree Aquarian Sun.

Now, I see that at this moment (1:12 p.m. EDT, Aug. 14) Kim Novak is the second most popular search on Yahoo, but I can’t figure out why. When I search Kim Novak, no news stories come up, just her film credits on IMDB. What’s going on with Kim Novak? Does anybody know?

Novak, most famous for co-starring in Alfred Hitchcock’s Vertigo opposite Jimmy Stewart, was born on Feb. 13, 1933 at 6:13 a.m., according to AstroTheme. You can see the chart here.

In one of my favorite Novak films, Bell, Book, and Candle, the actress is again paired with Stewart. She plays a witch named Gillian who lives in Greenwich Village and has a black cat named Pyewacket. I was fascinated by Bell’s beat influences, African art, and a young Jack Lemmon playing the bongo drums.

The Wiki speculates Gillian was the inspiration for Elizabeth Montgomery’s character Samantha in Bewitched, but I know she was also the model for budding astrologers who dreamed of living in Manhattan and hanging out at nightclubs.

There is a blogger named Kim Novak with a Web cam. Perhaps this is the Kim Novak that everyone is searching for on Yahoo. She and her friends have been staging an Office Olympics, to coincide with the Summer Games in Beijing. One contest is a ring toss that features sombreros, among other competitions.

As someone who spends a lot of time getting schooled in search-engine optimization, the art of generating Internet traffic, I’d say that blogger Kim Novak’s Office Olympics is a great way to get people to her site, especially since so many people are reading about the Beijing Olympics right now. I bet blogger Novak doesn’t even know that the name asteroid Olympia is squaring the North Node right now.

Dark Days and Knights for Christian Bale

There are so many things that I want to write about today, I don’t know where to begin. Being the Capricorn snob that I am, I like to get my celebrity gossip from upmarket sources like The Guardian of London.

Anyway, yesterday’s Guardian reported that The Dark Knight star Christian Bale was arrested by London police for allegedly assaulting his mother and sister the night of the film’s premiere. My first question: Where’s Dad?

Yahoo! (not as posh as the Guardian, I’ll admit) has a followup today, with the Welsh star of the latest Batman installment asking reporters in Spain, where the record-breaking film is making its local premiere, to respect his family’s privacy. Here’s the link: http://movies.yahoo.com/mv/news/ap/20080724/121691112000.html

Here’s the quick and dirty on Bale. With his natal Jupiter at 21 degrees of Aquarius, I’m not surprised that Dark Knight is a blockbuster. Neptune, which rules film, and the North Node, which governs contacts with the public, are transiting that natal Jupiter.

However, Pluto in Sagittarius is back on Bale’s South Node, and is not far from where it was when Dark Night co-star Heath Ledger died on Jan. 22, 2008). Pluto, the god of the underworld, is bringing up all kinds of stuff from Bales’ unconscious mind, no doubt with the aid of drugs and alcohol, because of the transit from Neptune to his natal Jupiter.

Bale, an Aquarius born Jan. 30, 1974 at an unknown time, had better be careful or he’ll end up in the slammer. Rehab may also be a distinct possibility. Here’s the chart, courtesy of Astro*Zoom, which uses Java, which not everyone has loaded on her computer: http://www.astrozoom.com/celebrity/Christian_Bale.html

Passages of outer planets like Pluto and Neptune can be quite disorienting and difficult to process without guidance. To quote Shakespeare, “Get thee to a nunnery” or some other safe venue to explore your demons, Christian!

All reader comments welcome on this one, folks. I’m just scratching the surface.