Donald Trump’s Real Birth Time

Several astrology blogs, including AstroDataBank, list 9:51 a.m. as the time that New York real estate billionaire Donald Trump was born on June 14, 1946. However, when Trump released his birth certificate in a nod to the “birthers” who believe that President Obama was not born in the US, it revealed a 10:36 or 10:56 a.m. time of birth. The handwriting is too small for me to make out in this image. Maybe one of Astrology Mundo’s eagle-eyed readers will let me know which one it is.

Assuming that 10:56 is the time of birth, Trump has a 0 degree Virgo rising. Given his prominent hair, now dyed brightly red, I would have chosen a Leo rising for Trump. But the new chart has Mars in Leo quite close to the Ascendant, so that works for me. Loaded Second House of Wealth also seems to confirm the new birthtime. Any thoughts, astrologers?


GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt: A True Aquarian

I don’t have time to give this the treatment it deserves, but at least one CEO knows which way the wind is blowing: General Electric’s Jeffrey Immelt, who has turned down his $12 million bonus for 2008.

In case you haven’t noticed, there’s a class war going on out there and America’s CEO royalty is being reined in after years of excess. Immelt gets the Aquarian ethos of putting the group (in this case, the company) ahead of the individual.

It is possible that Immelt, who was born Feb. 19, 1956 in Cincinnati (time unknown), is a Pisces if he was born late in the day. But in any event, he’s in the news right around his birthday, which often happens in my opinion.

Rupert Murdoch and Election Day: The View from Brazil

Here’s the latest report from Gian Paul, our fearless Brazil bureau chief. Gian Paul and I don’t agree on everything, but we both consider Rupert Murdoch to be one of the most powerful men in the world. Over to you, GP:

Rupert Murdoch is a man who fits America like a glove, astrologically speaking. Whoever dislikes him should either not read what follows or read it twice. As the saying goes, “Know your enemy.”

In my life, at least, nothing happens without some stellar connection. Monica was recently teasing me about having rightist tendencies. This is not true at all. I was once a member of a Swiss Communist cell in my youth. I admit that my wallet has subsequently drifted a bit to the right, but not my open mind.

I suspect that Murdoch, the Australian-born media mogul, soon will be in the news himself, and not because of his own making, this time at least. I formed this opinion after studying his horoscope and a few other related ones.

Murdoch was born in Melbourne, Australia on Mar. 11, 1931, at 11:55 p.m. His ascendant is 1 degree 31 minutes of Capricorn. Other features of the chart include a very strong Jupiter/Pluto conjunction in Cancer (like another corporate titan, Warren Buffett) that receives a potent Mercury/Sun trine and a Saturn opposition natally.

What gives Murdoch the punch everybody in the media business either fears or appreciates is Uranus conjunct the North Node in Aries, which squares his natal Jupiter/Pluto. Squares with Uranus, for the fearless at least, are extremely productive, and Murdoch has proven that throughout his life.

One reason why Murdoch’s fortunes are so closely tied to those of the U.S. is that his natal Pluto falls on America’s Mercury in my preferred chart. In my experience, the chart that has always yielded very good results is the one set for July 6, 1775, at 11 a.m. LMT in Philadelphia.

Using this chart, Murdoch’s visionary Neptune conjuncts the U.S. Neptune and Mars. His Ascendant conjuncts America’s Pluto while his Venus opposes the U.S. Venus. This may explain why Murdoch’s adversaries say his chief motivation is money.

Now, to unveil a bit of the mystery about why I think Murdoch will soon be making headlines: On Nov. 4, he will experience the following transits: Pluto will be at the midpoint of his Moon and Ascendant. Meanwhile, the Moon will be conjunct his Saturn and opposite his Mars.

In addition, Venus will be conjunct his Moon. Jupiter will be almost exactly opposite his Pluto and natal Jupiter. And finally, Uranus will be conjunct his Mercury/Sun, while Saturn will be making a favorable trine his Saturn. Thanks to his control of The Wall Street Journal, Fox News, and what have you, Murdoch around Nov 4 will experience a sense of power that he could never have imagined, even though he is a dreamy Pisces.

Thanks, Gian Paul. We’ll keep our eyes firmly focused on Murdoch as Americans go to the polls on Election Day and Saturn in Virgo opposes Uranus in the sky. By the way, Sky is the name of one of Murdoch’s TV properties.

If you’d like to read a post that I did on Murdoch that gives a lot of background about his life, you can find it here under “Citizen Murdoch.” G’day, mate!

What Makes Warren Buffett Tick?

Dan Ciuboda, a friend of Jude’s Threshold, has a post up on billionaire Warren Buffett that Jude is urging folks to read.

In case you haven’t heard, Buffett is the man of the hour on Wall Street. He’s agreed to give Goldman Sachs a “cash infusion” of $5 billion in exchange for preferred shares in the investment bank, which is converting to commercial bank status to get a little more government protection.

I did my duty on various blogs and pointed out that Warren Buffett is not a “buffet,” a little mental note that has prevented me from misspelling the Oracle of Omaha’s name on many occasions.

I wouldn’t have tried to calculate Buffett’s chart on my own, but looking at the horoscope for Buffett proposed by Ciuboda at Living Astrology got me thinking.

Ciuboda’s got Buffett as a late Gemini rising, with martial Mars quite close to the Ascendant, but Buffett doesn’t seem that combative to me. Of course, Mars is in Cancer so if someone writes in and says he’s read articles about how Buffett gets teary-eyed and sentimental at the drop of a hat, I’ll believe in this chart.

I don’t have the time or patience to rectify. We’ll leave that to the pros like Michael WolfStar. Here’s my seat-of-the-pants calculation:

I believe that Buffett, who was born in Omaha on Aug. 30, 1930, is a Virgo rising with Sun and Neptune conjunct on the Ascendant. If you look at Buffett, he dresses like an accountant — very Virgoan. The Neptune on the Ascendant would be the reason why he’s known as the “Oracle of Omaha” since Neptune is quite visionary.

Buffett’s still going strong at 78, so that could indicate a Sun on the Ascendant, which gives good health and vitality. He has a sunny disposition and is always smiling.

The Sun/Neptune combo in humble Virgo is also his folksiness — personally writing a letter to shareholders every year in the annual report of his main investment vehicle, a publicly traded company named Berkshire Hathaway. (Most CEOs have the PR department write such correspondence.) Berkshire’s annual meeting in Omaha has kind of a state fair feeling to it, with lots of exhibits and diversions for shareholders. It’s been dubbed the “Woodstock of Capitalism.”

By living simply, Buffett is celebrating the common man. But he’s not a stick in the mud: He likes a little good-old fashioned fun.

A couple of other thoughts: The modest house that Buffett lives in? That’s camouflage. That’s why I’ve got Scorpio on the fourth house cusp. The Moon in exotic, free-thinking Sagittarius is inside Buffett’s fourth house, which rules home and family.

Guess what? After his first wife Susie passed away in 2004, Buffett married his longtime partner, Astrid Menks, a Latvian immigrant who ended up waiting tables in Omaha. Susie, who moved to San Francisco in 1977 to pursue political interests and a cabaret singing career, encouraged Buffett’s relationship with Menks. The three used to send out Christmas cards together. Not what you would expect from a buttoned-down Omaha businessman. So, Moon in Sagittarius: The first wife is open-minded and the second one is a foreigner.

Buffett had a close, possibly intimate, friendship with Washington Post publisher Katharine Graham. In her biography Personal History, Graham credited Buffett with showing her the ropes of business after he made in an investment in the family-controlled company.

Graham, best known for publishing the stories that exposed the Watergate scandal and forced President Richard Nixon to resign, was thrust into running the paper and its other media operations after her husband committed suicide. So the Moon in Sag shows up as the lady publisher.

Where does Buffett’s tremendous wealth come from? I think it’s due to the conjunction of Jupiter and Pluto in Cancer in the 11th house, which ancient astrologers considered a very lucky house indeed. Think about it: Pluto the Intensifier and Jupiter the Expander in Cancer, the sign that rules food and sustenance. No wonder so many people have turned “Buffett” into “Buffet.”

Check out Buffett’s chart.

Thanks to Astrodienst, I’ve run the horoscope with transits of July 4, 1776. No, Buffett wasn’t one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. However, like many prominent Americans he has strong connections to the U.S. chart. Buffett has been a champion of American brands, often investing in them when they were out of fashion on Wall Street, and staying in the shares for the long haul.

Like the U.S., Buffett is going to face a lot of financial stress when Pluto starts moving in Capricorn over the next two years. In fact, some astrologers use his chart (even without a correct time of birth) as a surrogate for the U.S. economy.

I’ve filed Buffett under Heroes, not because he’s worth about $60 billion, but because he’s giving away the majority of his wealth to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Founded by the chairman of Microsoft and his wife, the foundation is using Buffett’s dough to improve access to health care and education in developing countries.

Buffett also was smart enough to label derivative instruments such as credit default swaps as “financial weapons of mass destruction” long before Wall Street got into the mess it’s in.

No wonder they call him the Oracle of Omaha.

Chillin’ with the ‘Life is Good’ Dudes

Last night at the Palm Springs Villagefest, a street fair held every Thursday, I got to meet Bert Jacobs, chief executive optimist (yes, that’s his title!) of Life is good, the Boston-based company dedicated to spreading good vibes. (For you copy editors out there, that lower-case “g” is intentional.)

Bert is no stranger to street fairs, having gotten his start at them, selling T-shirts with his brother John in the late 1980s. Only last night, Bert and John weren’t manning a humble booth; they were sitting outside a brand new Life is good store and autographing copies of their new book, Life is good: Simple Words from Jake and Rocket.

The book signing was heralded by spotlights that shined in the sky as if it were a movie premiere or the opening of a new car dealership — equally as glam in Southern California. In front of the store, there were two groovy cars decorated with Jake, the goofy-looking stick figure who is on his way to $100 million in revenues, and Rocket, his faithful canine companion. One of the vehicles (I’m not a car person so I didn’t notice what kind) was tangerine-colored and emblazoned with the slogan: “Do what you like. Like what you do.”

Of course, I couldn’t resist the opportunity to do a mini-interview. “I know you’ve been asked this a million times,” I said to Bert, as he inscribed a copy of the book, “but how did you get the idea for Life is good?” He told me the concept was a reaction to all the bad stuff he used to see on the evening news. “It wasn’t the nightly news. It was the nightly murder,” he said. “We wanted to let people know that life is good.”

And indeed it is for the Jacobs brothers, sons of Needham, Mass. who embody an upbeat, granola lifestyle that appeals to folks from Portland, Me., to Portland, Ore., and lots of places in between.

Just talking to Bert and flipping through the pages of the Life is good book, whose proceeds go to the Life is good Kids Foundation, made me want to buy that retro Electra bicycle called “Gypsy” that I saw yesterday. No, the Life is good ethos isn’t about consumerism; it’s about getting out on the road, being in nature, having fun, maybe lending a help hand if one is needed.

What’s gratifying to me is how the Jacobs brothers give back to their community. They’ve delivered countless “You can change the world” speeches at college graduations. On May 17, Bert Jacobs will be the commencement speaker at his alma mater, Fitchburg State College, in Massachusetts, and will receive an honorary degree from the school.

The philanthropic efforts of the Jacobs brothers and their foundation are truly awe-inspiring. Case in point: In October, 2006, Life is good broke a Guinness world record by lighting 30,128 jack-o-lanterns on the Boston Common. The event was a fund-raiser, and brought in more than $500,000 for Camp Sunshine, a haven for families of kids who are seriously ill. Even last night’s book signing was a fund-raiser. All proceeds from the sale of the $20 book go to the Life is Good Kids Foundation.

I’ve spent the morning reading profiles online of this latest rendition of the American rags-to-riches story. I’m going to link to a couple of the best, this one from the New York Times and this one from Inc. I didn’t find what I was searching for, though: birth dates for the two brothers.

I learned from the NYT that Bert was 42, and John, who is the company’s chief creative optimist, was 39, on Nov. 22, 2007, when the article appeared. In the course of surfing the Net, I found out that the brothers founded Life is good in 1994 with the creation of fun-loving Jake.

Although they had been peddling T-shirts at street fairs and on college campuses for several years before that, their official bio says that in August, 1994, “with a combined sum of $78 in the bank, the brothers considered giving up on the ultimate road trip. Then they created Jake and he showed them the way.”

That was during the Uranus/Neptune conjunction in Capricorn. I’m a Cap and I still haven’t figured out what that major aspect was about, other than helping Corporate America get a little groovier.

Based on the ages provided for Jacobs brothers, I’ll venture to say they are both part of the revolutionary Uranus/Pluto in Virgo conjunction crowd, born in the late Sixties.

(I don’t have my print ephemeris with me and can’t spend hours on this, but it’s possible John’s Uranus is in Libra, not Virgo. Without a birthday, I can only guess. Either way, it’s evident that Bert, who is definitely Uranus/Pluto in Virgo, is the spokesman of the team.)

Now, the obvious question here is: Why didn’t I ask Bert when he and his brother were born? I’m kicking myself this morning that I didn’t, but there was a line behind me to get books autographed. I’m a closet astrologer. I don’t like to call attention to my occult tendencies in public, especially with all the wacky folks wandering the streets of Palm Springs, where there is a homeless problem.

I didn’t have a chance to meet John last night, but Bert looks like a Virgo to me. Interesting that many of the Life is good T-shirts, water bottles, backpacks, and tote bags promote an outdoorsy lifestyle — very fitting for Virgo, since it’s an earth sign.

One of my favorite scenes from the Life is good book is a picture of a tent with the constellations overhead. It carries the tagline, “Five star accommodations are easy to find.” This egalitarian attitude echoes the hippie, back-to-the-land vibe of the late Sixties and thumbs its nose at the recent obsession with money and status. Another good one, in light of National TV-Turnoff Week (Apr. 21-28), has a picture of a TV and the axiom “Think Outside the Box.”

Even without birth dates for the Jacobs brothers, I can tell you this company will continue to expand, thanks to help from Jupiter in Capricorn this year. The slow passage of Pluto through Capricorn, which lasts until 2024, could bring great transformation to Life is good. Bert and John could go the way of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream and end up selling out to a multinational, but retaining control over the Life is good merchandise and image. That’s a ways down the road, though.

In the meantime, they’re keeping their merchandise fresh and have a great line of pastel-colored T-shirts for Mother’s Day . With Saturn’s passage through Virgo bringing on belt-tightening, the Great American camping trip is set to make a comeback. Yeah, gas prices are sky-high and the dollar is tanking, but we still need a vacation. And, of course, we’ll need some Life is good T-shirts for our road trip!

Citizen Murdoch

I used to work for an Australian who had a chip on his shoulder. Let’s call him Stephen. He was convinced that he faced discrimination in New York media circles because, get this, he was Australian. I thought this was hilarious since so many Aussies, including News Corp. Chairman Rupert Murdoch, have done quite well for themselves in Gotham.

Stephen was an unlikely Australian. He drank sparingly, laughed little, and dressed very neatly. Even though he was born in a country where they like to say, “No worries, mate,” Stephen worried all the time. In essence, he was the opposite of the Aussie stereotype. Stephen had been a reporter for the New York Post, a paper owned by Murdoch, and was obsessed with his fellow countryman. (Yeah, I know, Murdoch’s got an American passport, but his Australian upbringing is apparent in little things like the name of Fox 5’s morning show, Good Day, New York,  as in “G’day, mate.”) 

I never found out what was behind Stephen’s obsession with Murdoch, and it never occurred to me to ask. My impression was that he thought the American media were giving the media mogul a free ride, not really questioning  how a publicly traded company was being run as a family business. On Wall Street, they would say that Stephen had some concerns about News Corp.’s “governance issues.” 

Stephen ended up at the Wall Street Journal, which was recently taken over by Murdoch. Now that’s irony, if you ask me. I can’t imagine that the self-hating Aussie is happy about Murdoch’s meddling with the WSJ‘s winning formula. That interference led to today’s resignation of Marcus Brauchli, the paper’s managing editor. Here’s a link to an AP story about Brauchli:

Murdoch’s also been in the news the last couple of days for his plan to buy Newsday, the profitable Long Island tabloid that has been losing circulation under the stewardship of Tribune Co.  

Now, Murdoch has done so many things in his life, and News Corp. owns so many different properties that you could write a book. Others have, but I don’t have time for that right now.  I’m going to settle for a quickie astro reading.

Like some other present and former media moguls (John Malone, Michael Eisner), Murdoch is a Pisces. He was born Mar. 11, 1931 in Melbourne, Australia, at 11:55 p.m. His Sun is conjunct Mercury, the planet of communications, and those two Pisces planets make a favorable trine to a stellium of Jupiter, Pluto, and Mars in Cancer. All that Cancer usually means an emphasis on roots and family. Sure enough, Murdoch has expanded a business he inherited from his father and has involved his children in News Corp.’s operations.

What does Murdoch’s chart say at first glance? That he is intuitive, fortunate, expansive, and ruthless. As a Pisces, he has a knack for living his life in tune with the zeitgeist, doing things like marrying a Chinese woman, Wendi Deng, just as China is becoming a global economic player.

I don’t think anyone really knows Murdoch, except maybe his mother, Dame Elisabeth Murdoch, who is still going strong at age 99. He’s got Moon in Sagittarius, and the Moon rules the women in his life. The moon is in the 12th house of the unconscious, which governs prisons, hospitals, and other institutions. I haven’t read all the Murdoch biographies, but I’d venture to say his mother has been the most influential person in his life. 

The Wiki says his father, Sir Keith Murdoch, died in 1952, while Murdoch was still in college.  I was also interested to learn that Dame Elisabeth is a tireless philanthropist who has championed such causes as improving conditions for prisoners, mental hospital patients, abandoned children, and addicts. Sounds like a 12th house Moon to me. Don’t you love astrology?

Here’s Murdoch’s chart, courtesy of Star IQ:

Murdoch’s natal chart (a map of the planetary positions when he was born) is being lit up like Times Square by the current movements of the planets in the sky. He’s got transiting Pluto in Capricorn hanging around his Ascendant or rising. This is pushing him more heavily into business news. Some examples of this are the Dec. 13 acquisition of the WSJ,  the nation’s premier business paper, and the launch of Fox Business News on Oct. 15. Pluto didn’t move into Capricorn, which rules business, until January, but the timing is close enough for me. Murdoch is consolidating (Pluto) his position in financial media.

As electrical Uranus has made its way through Pisces, Murdoch has been awakened to the possibilities of the Internet, and News Corp. has gotten more interactive. As the company acquired the social networking site MySpace in July, 2005, for $580 million, transiting Uranus was trining Murdoch’s natal Jupiter. Oddly enough, $580 million is the amount that News Corp. is proposing to pay for Newsday. Maybe it’s Murdoch’s lucky number.

While my former boss Stephen may have believed that Murdoch was being let off easy by the media, that’s changing. Murdoch’s making enemies over at the Journal with his emphasis on shorter stories that appeal to the general public. He’s messing with a tried-and-true recipe developed by longtime WSJ managing editor Barney Kilgore (, and the Journal’s defenders of the faith resent it.

The fears about Murdoch’s tabloid tendencies were behind an April Fool’s Day parody of the WSJ featuring a bare-breasted photo of conservative poster girl Ann Coulter (thanks to the wonders of PhotoShop). The satire was designed to skewer Murdoch’s conservative politics and his appeal to the lowest common denominator, as evidenced by the racy photos that appear in his British tabloids.

Here’s the link to the sendup: 

In the small world department, the voice on the Web site that’s supposed to be Murdoch’s sounds like that of another former Australian boss of mine who also used to work for the Post, and no, I don’t think all Aussies sound alike. What kind of sheila do you think I am?

If you liked that sendup, here’s a funny riff on MySpace, another News Corp. property:

O.K., back to business. On a macro level, Murdoch could run into some regulatory opposition to the Newsday acquisition because of the proximity of its Long Island base to the Post’s New York City territory. However, the Federal Communications Commission has been loosening up the laws regarding media ownership so maybe this won’t be a problem the way it might have in the old days.  

Certainly, there are a lot of people out there who think Murdoch’s global empire is beyond the control of any government or regulatory authority, and they’re probably right. With Saturn approaching Murdoch’s Virgo Midheaven, I think criticism of him is going to get louder. Will it bother him? Not in the least. That’s a great thing about being a Pisces. You can live in your own little (or in Murdoch’s case, big) world.

Ratan Tata (Still) Rising

Ratan Tata, chairman of the $50 billion Indian conglomerate Tata Group, has been all over the news lately, with Pluto and Jupiter in Capricorn magnifying the billionaire industrialist’s Capricorn sun.

On Mar. 26, Tata Motors, one of his many ventures, agreed to acquire British car brands Jaguar and Land Rover from Ford Motor for $2.3 billion. This is sweet revenge, indeed. The Indians are buying the operations of their former rulers, the Brits.

As high profile as this acquisition is, it’s just a footnote to Tata Motors’ Jan. 10 launch of the $2,500 Nano, a “people’s car” that will get thousands of Indians off their bicycles and motor bikes and into cars. Concerns that safety might be an issue with a price tag that low and the prospect of thousands and possibly millions more cars on the nation’s already clogged roads didn’t dampen the enthusiasm about the Nano’s launch at the New Delhi auto show.

Tata Motors trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol TTM.  You can look at the chart for the stock and see company financials here: If the Mar. 26 trading session is any indication, Wall Street is skeptical that Tata Motors can make money on Jaguar and Land Rover, something Ford wasn’t able to do consistently.

Tata Motors isn’t the only part of the Tata empire that has been grabbing headlines lately. The other is Tata Consultancy Services. TCS is a leading player among Indian’s outsourcing shops, which handle back-office operations, customer service, and increasingly software design for many Western companies. TCS is one of the Indian companies that has been scrutinized by Congress for its use of H-1B visas. Foes of this visa program claim that it’s being used unfairly to replace American workers. 

Ratan Tata was born in Mumbai on Dec. 28, 1937. From the looks of his Wiki bio, he had an unhappy childhood, not unusual for a Capricorn. The many hours spent alone are used to map out the plan for world domination. Think I’m kidding? I’m not. One of my favorite axioms about Caps is that they come out of the womb with a “to-do list a mile long.” That’s not mine, but I can’t give credit because I don’t remember where I read it.

Already one of the world’s wealthiest men, Tata shows no signs of slowing down even though he just celebrated his 70th birthday. Somewhere in India there’s an astrologer or two who knows the time of Ratan Tata’s birth. Maybe in this Internet age we live in, someone will e-mail me Ratan Tata’s birth time or post a comment to my site.

In the meantime, I’m going to do my back-of-the-envelope calculations with the help of Astrodienst and say that Ratan Tata is a Sagittarius rising and that his chart ruler, Jupiter in Aquarius, sits in the second house of earned income. It’s square Uranus in Taurus, which opposes Moon in Scorpio.

I’m guessing he was born around 5:35 a.m because that would give him a MC/IC of 19 Virgo/Pisces, where he’s got a Neptune/Saturn opposition. I think Uranus at 19 degrees of Pisces is lighting up the Neptune/Saturn opposition, allowing him to make major breakthroughs, i.e. the Nano and the Jaguar/Land Rover deal.

Even if I’m wrong about the birth time, it doesn’t change his Sun/Mercury conjunction in Capricorn, which sextiles Moon in Scorpio and sextiles Mars in Pisces. This is a very energetic guy, and women play an important part in his life.  Here’s the chart:;btyp=w2gw;cid=41laaaa19347-s971800598;nhor=189;nho2=189

Ratan Tata’s got some challenges coming up, with the Saturn/Uranus conjunction in Virgo/Pisces this November and further down the road with the big cardinal grand cross in 2010. I don’t think the safety concerns about the Nano are going away anytime soon.

If I were Ratan Tata, I might mark June 26, 2010 on my calendar. That’s the day of a lunar eclipse at 4 degrees of Capricorn that is conjunct Pluto and activates a grand cross involving the Sun, Mercury, Jupiter, Uranus, the Moon, and Saturn — all within 5 degrees of the world axis at 0 degrees of the cardinal signs — Aries, Cancer, Libra, and Capricorn. With his Sun at 5 degrees of Cap, Tata’s chart will be lit up like a Christmas tree by this eclipse.

That’s a lot of squares, but squares produce action. Maybe 2010 will be when Tata Motors acquires General Motors or Chrysler. In the case of the latter, Cerberus Capital Management might be ready to unload it by then.

Speaking of Cerberus, why would a private investment firm name itself after the creature who guarded the gates to Hades? Is it because they make life a living hell for the workers at the companies they acquire? I hope not.