McCain’s ‘New’ Chart: The View From Brazil

Here’s Gian Paul’s analysis of the natal horoscope of GOP Presidential candidate John McCain, using the new birth time of 6:25 p.m. on Aug. 29, 1936 in Colon, Panama. The data comes from a State Dept. document that has suddenly surfaced on the Internet as Mercury is preparing to go direct.

You may recall that in his first post for Astrology Mundo, Gian Paul predicted that McCain will be the next President. (See “Why McCain Will Win: The View From Brazil”). He’s not backing away from that theory. Here’s why:

I gave McCain’s “new” chart a test run using three events in the man’s life. I will even speculate on the next one, which will take place on Nov. 4.

1) McCain escaped a serious explosion on the aircraft carrier Forrestal on July 29, 1967. Although there were several casualties, he escaped with his life. The North Node/Moon was then transiting his Uranus. Jupiter was conjunct his natal Mars in the sixth house of health in the latest chart. Nice protection health-wise!

2) McCain was shot down on Oct. 26 1967, and captured by the North Vietnamese, as he recently reminded us by addressing voters as “my fellow prisoners.” What’s striking to me is that McCain has Saturn retrograde at 20 degrees of Pisces in his first house.

Because this house represents the physical body, it is not unexpected that he would become a prisoner of some sort at one or seven several times in his life. The question now: Has he become a “prisoner” of Sarah Palin, his vice-presidential nominee?

The transits of when McCain was grounded and was captured also provide support for the new chart. The Moon (change) was transiting his Pluto in Cancer and the fifth house. I interpret this as “an end to creativity and play.” As a prisoner of war, McCain could hardly think of having children!

Venus, being exactly conjunct his natal Neptune in in the seventh house of relationships an marriage, indicates that at some time Venusian “aspirations” would have to be relegated to the realm of fantasy.

3) On Mar. 14, 1973, McCain was released by the North Vietnamese. The Sun was then transiting his troublesome retrograde Saturn in the first. The Moon, again over his Pluto in the fifth house, was this time accompanied by a strong and favorable transit of Jupiter to his natal Moon in the 12th house of forced confinements.

From my point of view, these three events amply confirm that this time we have the correct birth time for McCain.

Concerning Nov. 4, Election Day: I prefer using 0 hours of Nov. 5, for practical reasons. By then, the entire U.S., including Alaska and Hawaii, will have had its say.

I will restrict my interpretation exclusively to McCain and his current chart, using transits of zero hour of the day after.

The man is in for trouble, first with women, than with an enormous load of responsibilities. I believe that McCain will be your next President in an extremely trying world.

Let me explain: Saturn is exactly opposite his natal Saturn. A new half-cycle (Saturn) is starting. As Saturn is also closing in to conjunct his Venus in Virgo (not a comfortable aspect), I presume that some “feminine stresses” are to be expected.
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Confirming this is a square of transiting Venus to his natal Saturn/Venus opposition, forming a T-square. If he gets elected with Palin, he will have to deal with two women, at least — his wife and his vice-president. We’ll see how that will work out.

But transiting Venus is in McCain’s 10th house. On Nov. 5, it will have just completed a conjunction with his Jupiter in Sagittarius, the ruler of his natal chart. (According to my style of astrological interpretation, a planet in its ruling sign becomes the chart’s “governor.”)

Another salient transit on Nov. 4-5: The Moon is exactly over his natal Moon, in
Aquarius, and Sarah Palin is an Aquarius.

One last point: Uranus, which turns direct on Nov. 27, will exactly conjunct McCain’s Saturn in the first house around Jan. 20, 2009, Inauguration Day. He may finally feel free from the restrictions of Saturn. Being the boss can do that for you.

Or he may feel imprisoned by the media circus (Uranus) that surrounds his new jail at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue!

Mercury Retrograde: John McCain Does the Time Warp

Astrologers know that John McCain is a Virgo and the planetary ruler of his sign, Mercury, is in retrograde phase right now. That means its apparent motion, when viewed from the earth, is backward.

Well, McCain appears to be doing his own version of the Time Warp. The Wall Street Journal reported that the GOP Presidential candidate and former prisoner of war addressed a crowd in Pennsylvania as “my fellow prisoners”.

Perhaps he meant “prisoners of debt.” According to the U.S. National Debt Clock, outstanding public debt as of today is $10.2 trillion, and each American’s share of this is $33,547.65. In fact, our debt is so great that the National Debt Clock in Times Square doesn’t have enough digits to report it, according to the Associated Press.

My fellow astrologers, it gets even better. It turns out the blog item on the WSJ’s Web site has a mistake in it. It calls McCain “the Republican vice-presidential candidate” when, of course, he is running for President. I’m sure they’ll fix it soon, but gaffes abound during Mercury retrograde.

Along similar lines, I was reading a fascinating article in this month’s issue of Vanity Fair about Ingrid Betancourt that is missing a byline. In the text of the story, it talks about a school being named for the author, Maureen Orth, the widow of broadcast journalist Tim Russert. Somebody reading those galleys wasn’t doing his job. Orth’s byline is on the Web version of the story, though.

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.

New Moon in Virgo August 30

If there’s anything or anyone you want to purge from your life, the New Moon in Virgo is the time to do it. The New Moon takes place at 7 degrees of Virgo, quite close to disciplined Saturn, at 3:58 p.m. on Aug. 30.

Virgo, the sign of the Virgin, is about cleansing and purification. If you’ve been eating junk food all summer, as I have, now is the time to go back to a healthy diet. It’s harvest time, so that makes it easy to embrace the fruits of the nature. I plan to make a big batch of ratatouille this weekend.

If you’re looking for something more extreme, it’s a good time to fast (not too long, please!) or start a new exercise regimen. The only thing I’ve been exercising this summer are my fingers, which have been dancing across the keyboard. I really need to get back to the gym.

Of course, the New Moon in Virgo means back to school for lots of children, as well as the parents who drop them off and pick them up. It’s back to a routine, another Virgo word, as we put our noses to the grindstone. In the Hudson Valley, where I live, there’s a giant grindstone in the lobby of the Town of East Fishkill offices that dates from colonial times.

When my friend Don and I visited the reservation of the Agua Caliente Indian tribe this summer in Palm Springs, the ranger who gave us the tour told us Native American women were traditionally judged by how finely they ground their flour. This was a mind-boggling concept for a woman accustomed to buying Gold Medal flour at the supermarket.

The concept of grinding finely comes naturally to those born under the sign of Virgo. They have fine intellects and a keen attention to detail. Everyone knows the stereotype of Virgos as neat freaks, but, as my former astrology teacher Eileen McCabe taught me, they can also be total slobs. Why? They just give up and surrender to chaos if they can’t achieve perfection.

That love of perfection can become an addiction in itself. It’s not unusual to see people with a strong Virgo emphasis in their chart to have body issues and struggle with eating disorders such as anorexia or bulimia. This is mistakenly thought to be exclusively a female problem, but now that thin is in again for men, don’t be surprised to be hearing more about men and eating disorders.

Virgo also rules work, and therefore it’s apt that the New Moon in this earth sign often falls close to Labor Day, the holiday that honors the working class. As you rest from your labors this weekend and prepare to dive into a busy fall schedule, thank the Goddess for the fertility she bestows on our lives.

In exchange for these blessings, why not take time to perform service? Send a soldier overseas a goodie box, bring the neighbor next door some zucchini from the garden, or participate in a neighborhood cleanup. Better yet, perform a random act of kindness for a stranger. The lesson of the New Moon in Virgo: Virtue is indeed its own reward.

Mars Conjunct Saturn in Virgo

By now, most folks who follow the stars know that Mars will be conjunct Saturn at 5 degrees of Virgo on July 10.

I’ve been spending the morning thinking of ways to use this energy in a constructive fashion.

Mars rules work and power, and it’s meeting up with Saturn, which has to do with obstacles and restrictions. The two combined can result in frustration, but I think the intense effort also could produce results for a long-delayed project.

A popular interpretation for Mars/Saturn is “the end of work,” so you’ll notice that plays into a few of my suggestions. You frequently see this aspect in the charts of people taking time off from work for a vacation or medical procedure.

The sign of Virgo rules work, the environment, health-care, civil service, labor, detailed work, and accounting, to name just a few things, and these areas also factor into some of my suggestions.

Here’s my Top 10 list of what to do on July 10:

1. Get a root canal or any other dental procedure that you’ve been dreading.
2. Clean up any unfinished business with the Internal Revenue Service or Social Security. (Yes, Scorpio and Pluto traditionally have rulership over death and taxes, but Virgo rules accounting matters.)
3. Bring toxic paints, chemicals, and dead batteries to a special collection area if your town has one. (California has mandated these special areas statewide, but they exist in other places.) If the collection area isn’t open, separate the items for future dropoff.
4. Participate in a demonstration designed to improve the lot of workers.
5. Take a personal day from work to do chores around the house.
6. Make sure your life and health insurance is in order.
7. Get overdue immunizations for travel.
8. Organize your closets, and throw away medicines and household items that are past their expiration date.
9. Prune your trees and weed your garden.
10. Quit your job.

Hey, I didn’t say any of these things were going to be fun! These planets are meeting in Virgo, after all.

Breaking News: New 11 a.m. Birth Time for John McCain

UPDATE: This May 11, 2008 post is getting a lot of Web traffic, but this isn’t the most up-to-date birth time for John McCain, nor is it my most recent post on the subject. Please see “John McCain Born at 6:25 p.m.: It’s Official,” for the latest news.

Happy Mother’s Day. I’m in New Mexico visiting my Mom. A friend just sent me a link to a John McCain TV commercial featuring the GOP candidate and his Mom that is pegged to Mother’s Day. In the commercial, McCain jokes that he was born during “happy hour.” This is pretty funny when you consider his wife Cindy inherited a Budweiser wholesaler and distributor. His Mom corrects him and says that he was actually born around 11 a.m.

Here’s the link to the commercial.

This is breaking news, because AstroDataBank and other reputable data sources have McCain’s birth time as 9 a.m. on Aug. 29, 1936 in Cocosolo, Panama. AstroDataBank says that time came from McCain’s Mom after she was telephoned by his staffers. Since McCain’s father was in the Navy (he was an Admiral, as was McCain’s grandfather) and he was born overseas, there is an official record with a time of birth somewhere. 

Here’s the AstroDataBank chart, and here’s the chart with the 11 a.m. time, courtesy of Astrodienst.

At first glance, I like the 11 a.m. time because it produces a Scorpio rising that is almost exactly sextile McCain’s Neptune in Virgo.

If you click on the campaign commercial, you’ll hear McCain’s Mom reminiscing about the 27 gift bottles of Scotch (Neptune) that were lined up on a table at “the [Officers’] Club” to greet the arrival of John McCain. Also, McCain followed in the footsteps of his father and grandfather and became a Navy officer, which fits in with a Neptune aspect to the Ascendant. Of course,  this is also represented by the broad Neptune/Sun conjunction in the natal chart.

Neptune is also square Jupiter in Sagittarius, which could represent financial fiascoes, and McCain’s involvement with the savings and loan meltdown in the 1980s. The Arizona senator was one of the “Keating Five,” a group of legislators accused of improperly aiding Charles Keating, chairman of the failed Lincoln Savings and Loan Assn.

The new chart puts fiery, fun-loving Mars in Leo at the Midheaven. This Mars is square Uranus in Taurus, which is why McCain is known for his angry outbursts, including allegedly calling wife Cindy the “c” word in public.

Why is he getting a free ride from the media? Progressed Jupiter in Sag is moving in tandem with progressed North Node, and progressed Venus is not far behind. Basically, the guy can do no wrong right now.

The new data also puts McCain’s progressed Sun very close to the Ascendant. I’m not making any predictions here but the new chart indicates that in about six months, McCain will be more visible to the public. Here’s McCain’s new chart, with transits on Inauguration Day, Jan. 20, 2009, from Astrodienst.

Transiting Pluto in Capricorn (power, the Establishment) is on his North Node (the public) in the second house of resources that day. It looks to me as if McCain is connecting with a major source of wealth. He could be named CEO of a major entity around that time. We’ll see if it’s USA Corp.

There are some not so favorable transits happening to McCain on Inauguration Day so I’m not ready to call this a done deal by any means. The Saturn/Uranus opposition in Pisces/Virgo is sitting right on top of McCain’s natal Venus/Saturn opposition in the fifth and 10th houses.  If it’s not heart trouble, it’s girl trouble. Maybe both. Still, if McCain fails to win the presidency, he’ll be able to console himself with the wealth and power coming his way.

In the meantime, we all owe Regina at Gastriques a big thank you for ferreting out McCain’s new birth time!

Reverend Jeremiah Wright’s Bully Pulpit

Well, you’ve got to give Reverend Jeremiah Wright credit: I haven’t heard this much discussion about race in America since the O.J. Simpson trial. Before the firestorm dies down, I want to put up a chart for Reverend Wright, who was recently denounced by his former congregant, Democratic Presidential hopeful Barack Obama.

While I’m surprised that Reverend Wright has chosen this moment in time for his closeup, I’m not stunned by some of his “outrageous,” to use Obama’s word, theories. I’ve had black friends who wouldn’t put their money in the bank because they were sure they were going to wake up one morning and it would be gone.

Guess what? That’s basically what happened to Jews who lived in Nazi Germany. And, as South Africa proved for years with its apartheid system, it’s possible to have state-sanctioned racism. Some would argue that Israel falls into that category with its treatment of the Palestinians, but I don’t want to stray too far from my topic into even more incendiary areas.

While such allegations by Reverend Wright that the U.S. government may have been involved in creating and spreading AIDS may not constitute racism per se, his paranoia highlights the fears, justified or not, of the “black church” about the white Establishment.

Lest we forget, racism is a two-way street. There’s suspicion of whites among African-Americans just the way there is discrimination against blacks, Latinos, and other people of color by whites. What’s always amazed me is the preferential treatment that light-skinned blacks get within the African-American community, perpetuating the discrimination based on skin tone begun by the oppressors.

When I traveled in India, I couldn’t help but noticing that the folks born into lower castes, the so-called untouchables, usually had darker skin than those further up the Hindu food chain, i.e., the Brahmins.

In parts of Asia such as India and the Philippines, the cosmetics companies do a brisk business in creams that promise a “fairer” (lighter) complexion. It goes without saying that discrimination based on skin color is a worldwide problem, not just a U.S. one, despite what the America-bashers would have you believe.

Here’s Jeremiah Wright’s chart, courtesy of Astrodienst. He was born Sept. 22, 1941 in Philadelphia. We don’t know what time he was born, but even if he were born close to midnight, he’s still a 29 degree Virgo. Maybe after all those years of service (Virgo), he decided it was time for his moment in the sun. He certainly doesn’t seem to care about the effect of his inflammatory remarks on Obama’s Presidential prospects.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: the last degree of a sign is a wild card. It can’t be controlled. I know, I’ve got Mars at 29 degrees of Sag and have been frequently branded a “loose cannon” despite my staid Capricorn self-image.

As you can see, the transiting Jupiter/Mars opposition in Capricorn/Cancer has been forming a grand cross with Wright’s fiery Mercury/Mars opposition at 22 degrees of Libra/21 degrees of Aries. You know what happens when there’s a cross around? Someone gets crucified.

Here’s the link to Jeremiah Wright’s natal chart, set for noon on Sept. 22, 1941 in Philadelphia because we don’t have the time of birth. Transits of May 1 are on the outside.

I’d feel like a real blogger if someone commented on the chart or looked at the composite chart for Obama and Wright to see what the astrological trigger was for the rupture between the two.