Martha Gellhorn – one of the 20th Century greats



‘Love and Ruin’ is a new novel about Martha Gellhorn, the writer and war correspondent, and her relationship with Ernest Hemingway which sparked up during the Spanish Civil War and led to a brief marriage (his fourth).  She was a major figure in the 20th Century with an instinct for being at the centre of events, reporting on the devastating and heart-rending effects of the US Depression in the 1930s; and later on virtually every major world conflict that took place during her 60-year career. Her relationship with Hemingway was always fraught and she refused to be tied down by him, embarking through her life on multiple liaisons.

Born 8 November 1905 in St Louis Missouri (no time sadly), with a suffragette mother and an unbending medical father, she was a Sun Scorpio with a Taurus Moon – emotionally intense, stubborn but always ambivalent about what she wanted. She had the generational, highly-strung Uranus in Capricorn opposition Neptune squaring onto a feisty, impulsive and pro-active Mars in Libra, drawing her into high-risk situations. Her Neptune Uranus was also trine/sextile her Sun.

Her Mars was further emphasised being widely conjunct Mercury in fair-minded Libra and both being in a courageous, high-adrenaline and probably quite ruthless trine to Pluto North Node in Gemini. The North Node is associated with the zeitgeist or spirit of the times and she’d be drawn to the darker side with Pluto Mars. Oddly enough for someone attracted to danger she had only one Fire sign – Saturn in self-reliant Aries – so wouldn’t be as trusting about her survival as her lifestyle suggested.

Her Venus in Libra opposed Saturn and squared Uranus so she’d be constantly searching and never finding what she wanted emotionally.

She was adamant in later years that she wouldn’t talk about Hemingway since she didn’t want to be ‘a footnote’ in his life. She was very much her own woman.

Born 21 July 1899 8am Oak Park, Illinois, he was a Cancer with a Capricorn Moon so at a simplistic level it wasn’t a bad match. Her Sun was in his 3rd for intellectual rapport and her Jupiter was conjunct his Virgo Ascendant so she’d brighten his life. But her defensive and independent Saturn was on the cusp of his 8th and square his Moon, and her Uranus was conjunct his Moon and opposition his Venus for an erratic mix.

Their relationship chart was adventurous with a composite Mars Uranus in a hard-edged trine to Saturn, so would do well in risky situations. But the composite Sun squared an unstable, constantly-changing Uranus opposition Pluto. Passion with the composite Venus sextile Pluto, but not for long with Venus trine Uranus.

Her leaving-a-legacy-for-history was heavily aspected; as was her writer’s 21H.


UK – the lessons of history ** add on



Wave a magic wand and the Brexit referendum never took place. But with it or without it, the same planetary influences will occur. Tr Uranus will still move through the UK 8th house from circa 2019 till 2027 bringing deep-seated financial and emotional upheavals; with a peak-collision around 2021/2022 when the Solar Arc Uranus and tr Uranus conjunct the UK 8th house Mars; and the Solar Arc Midheaven will still square the UK Neptune around 2024.

Looking at previous occurrences:

URANUS THROUGH the UK 8th house:

1936 to 1943 – kicking off with the death of King George V, and abdication of King Edward V111 to marry Wallis Simpson, the Jarrow March against poverty and unemployment; Chamberlain’s Munich Agreement with Hitler, then World War 11 where it was not remotely clear in the early years there would be victory. Tr Uranus was conjunct the UK Mars for the Coronation of King George V1.

[During this period in 1942 Solar Arc Neptune was square the UK Midheaven when Singapore surrendered to Japan, arguably the most devastating loss in British military history.]

Uranus in UK 8th: 1852 to 1859 – the Highland Clearances, the Crimean War (a war of “notoriously incompetent international butchery”.) which was declared on the final transit of Uranus to the UK Mars.

[And if once assumes minus mathematics work: Uranus in UK 1801 8th: 1768 to 1775 – American Revolution leading to the loss of the US colonies.]

SOLAR ARC URANUS SQUARE UK Mars in 8th – 1930, more or less at the same time as SOLAR ARC MC SQUARE UK NEPTUNE: – the Great Depression arrived on the back of the 1929 Wall Street Crash.

One way or another momentous events, with loss of face, dents to national pride and financial hardship. Though there would be additional astrological influences for all of the above occasions which are not recurring this time round.


Add on: From Hugh: ’During a previous occurrence (of Uranus in Taurus)  in the early 1600s Elizabeth 1 died and the Stuart dynasty united the thrones of England and Scotland. Roll the clock forward to the late 1680s and Uranus was in Taurus when the Glorious Revolution occurred. It was there again in the early 1770s in the run up to the American War of Independence and the loss of the American colonies.For me though the big similarity looks to be the comparison to the Uranus transit of Taurus between 1515 and 1523 which also occurred when Pluto and Saturn were in Capricorn and formed a Conjunction in January 1518. That occurred at the start of the Reformation and had huge global significance not just for the UK but also for the entire planet.’

October 2017 post on Uranus through Taurus: Uranus, on its 84 year cycle, moves into Taurus May 15th 2018 staying for 7 years, the first time since 1934 to 1941.   Uranus is inventive and experimental and Taurus is earthy and practical, so no surprises that on previous occurrences there were new discoveries. In the later 1930s there were major advances in technology in aviation, radio, and film. On a previous occasion, in the late 17th Century, street lighting was introduced in London. There was also widespread exploration across the globe and major advances in astronomy, including the first sighting of Uranus (which was mis-named). Taurus being earthy and quite anal, no surprises either that sewage systems and toilets came to the fore.

Taurus is also acquisitive for money and possessions so from past experience trade became a pressing and not always compassionate drive. During the Uranus in Taurus of 1600 England starts trade with Asia; two Uranus in Taurus later it moves into Bengal with catastrophic results for the population; 2 million die in a famine and the East India Company raises their taxes and ships the revenues out of the country! The Same Brit company then takes over the North American tea trade, which leads, due to their punitive taxation, into the American Revolution.

The Bengal famine narrative repeated in a different location during the mid 19th Century Uranus in Taurus in Ireland. The potato crop failed, which starved a million to death and a million emigrated, with the British overlords, who were partly the cause of the population’s reliance on one crop, continuing to send foodstuffs to the UK. And that is a wound which has never healed.

It isn’t easy to extrapolate the effect of Uranus in Taurus from other influences ongoing. The mid 19th Century Uranus in Taurus came on the back of a Saturn Pluto Uranus conjunction in late Aries/Taurus, so was always going to be a time of upheaval and devastation.

The most similar to this one would be the 1767 Uranus in Taurus with Pluto in Capricorn about to oppose Saturn in Cancer, with Neptune in Virgo. Apart from the horrors of the Bengal famine, James Watts’ steam-engine inventions drove the Industrial Revolution into being; and the first mechanical spinning frame for fabric weaving also appeared.

The most recent 1935 to 1941 Uranus in Taurus came on the back of the Great Depression of the decade following 1929, with widespread poverty and unemployment leading to authoritarian regimes emerging in several countries, most notably German with Hitler rising to power from 1933; and Stalin’s Great Purge of 1936-38 with 600,000 being executed in Russia by the state.

In 1935 Uranus was just over the square to Pluto in Cancer, so not dissimilar to now – and it ended with a Saturn Uranus conjunction trine Neptune in Virgo in 1941. Territorial greed is clearly also one of its manifestations; as well as inhumane methods in the pursuit of power.

Overall conclusion would be good and bad. Innovative yes. Power and money hungry also.

Jodie Foster – drawn to the dark side



Jodie Foster, the double Oscar-winner is back with her first role in five years in Hotel Artemis, playing an alcoholic nurse treating wounded bad guys in private hospital for criminals in a dystopian future Los Angeles. Described as ‘a watchable and stylish piece of work, anchored by a very strong performance from Foster, who has been aged up to look older than her years.’

She’s another who has had a very long career, starting aged 3 in commercials; playing a teenage prostitute in Scorsese’s Taxi Driver at 12; and then transitioning into adult roles in The Accused as a rape survivor; and later most memorably in The Silence of the Lambs. She’s never picked conventional or light-hearted roles, and more recently has taken to directing. She also carries the weight of being the object of John Hinckley’s obsession, who tried to impress her by attempting to assassinate Ronald Reagan, wounding him and three others. This after seeing her in Taxi Driver.

She was born 19 November 1962 8.14 am Los Angeles to a mother who divorced before she was born and she never knew her father. She has a 12th house Sun Mercury in Scorpio with Venus Neptune also in Scorpio and all square Mars in Leo at the end of the 8th house – very intense, private with all of Scorpio’s attraction to the darker side of life. Her 9th house Virgo Moon is conjunct Uranus Pluto and opposition Jupiter – so confident, adventurous but has had an erratic emotional life. Her Saturn in cool Aquarius is opposition a leadership North Node in Leo in her 8th.

Her actor’s 15th harmonic is heavily aspected though strained with a T square of Jupiter Moon MC; and a Yod of Mars (Pluto) Jupiter onto an apex Neptune.

She’ll probably slide out of sight again after this movie launch with Jupiter through her 12th for a few months; and more so with Saturn through the nadir of her first quadrant for another two or three years.  Though she may bounce up in 2021 when her Solar Arc MC squares her Jupiter.

David McCallum – a Virgo with staying power



Actor David McCallum is still strutting the boards on television aged 85, as ‘Ducky’ the medical examiner on the hugely popular Naval crime drama NCIS. He’s had a long and illustrious career making his name as the Russian spy Ilya Kuryakin in The Man from UNCLE in the 1960s.

Born 19 September 1933 at 2am in Glasgow, Scotland, into a family of classical musicians he intended to make that his career but switched to acting. His first marriage to Jill Ireland ended in divorce, but his second has lasted for 51 years and he’s now a naturalised US citizen. He’s also now writing crime fiction.

He has a sharp-witted 3rd house Virgo Sun with Mercury Jupiter in Libra also in the 3rd; a dreamy Moon Neptune in Virgo; and an intense Venus Mars in Scorpio in his family 4th.  Plus a forensic Saturn in Aquarius. Maverick Uranus is in his 10th square a 12th house Pluto. It’s a fairly disjointed chart but is strong in quintiles and septiles. The 14th Harmonic is especially marked – good for communication with high nervous energy.

Nigel Farage – you win some, you lose some



Nigel Farage, a key figurehead in the BREXIT campaign and long-time-eurosceptic, appears to be a person of interest in the Mueller Russia investigation for his and Brexit chief donor Aaron Banks’ meetings with Russians. He describes the notion as part of a “vast conspiracy theory” and “hysterical rubbish”. Farage visited Julian Assange in the London Embassy where he’s holed up and was said at a Congressional Inquiry to have handed over a thumb drive to him. He is a buddy with Trump who suggested him for a diplomatic post to much amusement in London. Farage and his aide, office manager and head of fund raising for UKIP George Cottrell appeared on US television during the 2016 US campaign and engaged in discussions with Trump’s aides. This was before Cottrell was arrested by the FBI on 21 federal counts of fraud, money laundering and extortion. Farage said he was shocked and unaware of any wrongdoing.

Born 3 April 1964 4.30pm Farnborough, England, Farage has an intense 8th house Sun in Aries, widely conjunct a combative Mars in his 7th; with Jupiter Mercury also in his 8th trine a 4th house Sagittarius Moon. It’s a Fire Earth chart so he’s a steamroller personality with endless energy.

He is not looking remotely pleased with life ahead. There’s a Solar Arc Saturn conjunct his Mars, exact in six months’ time which will accompany a major setback; with a confidence-eroding Solar Arc Sun opposition his Neptune exact in a years’ time. Before then: September and October this year look jangled, jittered and very bad tempered: and he’ll have nervous spasms from a crisis in the second half of this October and again in March 2019. Into 2019 he looks seriously panicked from April onwards with tr Neptune conjunct his Mars/Saturn midpoint, repeating on and off till late 2020. He’ll have bouts of bullish confidence but on the whole won’t feel he’s winning. 2021/22 also look like a downhill slide. Which may be for a myriad of reasons as well as Brexit since he leads a very complicated life.

Brexit – hardline anti-EU cadre in good spirits ahead



The Brexit merry-go-round is an all-consuming fight to the death in the Westminster bubble with a dazed public outside throwing their hands up in disbelief and despair. What might be a pointer to the likely outcome are the prospects for the heavyweight  Brexiteers.

Jacob Rees-Mogg, a quaint nannified old Etonian, appears to have taken over as enforcer-in-chief on behalf of the European Research Group (ERG) on the eurosceptic side of the Tory Party (a touch like the USA Tea Party). He’s a traditionalist, reactionary, right-wing populist – against abortion in all circumstances, rape included, chairman of a fund management group as well as an MP.

ERG, of which Rees-Mogg is now chairman, was started in 1993, as an anti-EU group within the Tory Party and is described by the Times as “the most aggressive and successful political cadre in Britain today”. They are for a hard Brexit.

Rees-Mogg is having his ups and downs this year into early 2019 but in general looks in remarkably good spirits ahead in November this year and February 2019; and more so thereafter with tr Pluto moving to trine his Pluto in 2019/2020, then trine his successful Jupiter/Pluto over 2020/2021 and then his trine his Jupiter in 2021/2022.

Daniel Hannan, a Tory MP and journalist, 1 September 1971, was the first director of ERG straight out of university and has campaigned hard ever since against the EU. He looks in cheerful mood through this September and October; and feeling lucky this December and January 2019. With a tough slog in 2019/2020 but also a major lucky break in 2019.

That pair are looking much more upbeat than William Hague and John Major, two former Tory Party seniors who are pro-EU and on the whole confused and horror-struck ahead.

I can’t make head nor tail of the two Conservative Party charts I have – 12 November 1867 and 18 December 1834 – which show up remarkably little of the present civil war in the party, nor indeed looking back do they show up anything too informative when Maggie Thatcher won and the loss of 1997.


Lewis Hamilton – his lucky Jupiter bringing in the money



Lewis Hamilton, Formula One racing driver for Mercedes and regarded as the best driver of his generation, is about to sign is the most lucrative contract in Formula 1 history. Hamilton and Mercedes are expected to confirm this Sunday at the German Grand Prix a three-year deal worth $170-million; and if he wishes to stay an extra $150-million to extend until 2023.

Born 7 January 1985 in Hertford, England, he’s a Sun Jupiter in Capricorn, so materially ambitious and lucky. He was born at the time of the Full Moon in Cancer (split parents) and the opposition is sextile/trine an obsessively conscientious Saturn in Scorpio. He’s also got Pluto in an ultra-determined trine to a passionately enthusiastic Mars Venus in Pisces; with Mars also in a high-octane square to Uranus. He started go-karting when young and progressed on from there. It’s a go-get-em chart so he was destined to make his mark one way or another.

He has been through tough and transformational times over the past two or three years with tr Pluto conjunct his Sun and possibly opposition his Moon with tr Uranus in square. He’s clear of that now and with tr Pluto conjunct his Sun/Jupiter midpoint in 2018/2019 and then conjunct his Jupiter in 2019/2020 he’s in for a good run – money and success. Having said that he will have a few dips this year courtesy of tr Saturn and tr Neptune hitting several midpoints; and there’ll be an upheaval of sorts in 2019 with tr Uranus opposition his Pluto.

Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic – an example to uppity politicians



Not all politicians are rip-off merchants. The president of Croatia, Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović, was a prominent fixture at the FIFA World Cup, wearing her team’s shirt and travelling at her own expense economy class to be there, often in the non-VIP stand. She was there for every match bar one when she had to attend the Nato summit. After the final between Croatia and France, she hugged every team member of both teams. OK so she’s up for re-election soon but still. She’s the head of state and Croatia’s chief representative at home and abroad, with executive and operational powers residing in the government.

Born 29 April 1968  in Rijeka, Croatia, she’s a Sun Mercury in Taurus; with her Mars (Moon) in Taurus opposition Neptune square Jupiter in Leo; and her Mars also trine Pluto Uranus in Virgo. Her strong Jupiter will give her vision and idealism and the ability to spearhead social movements. And with so many Fixed planets she’s certainly got endurance.

Trump mop up – addicted to autocrats, the Russia connection * update



This is getting to be an edge-of-seat rolling drama, a truth-stranger-than-fiction boxset, hopefully not with an eight season run.

Psycho-babble first. Why does Trump go weak at the knees over dictators and gangster leaders? Simple answer – his father Fred Trump, born 11 October 1905, NY. He was a Sun Libra like Putin with his Pluto in Gemini conjunct the Donald’s Sun and opposition his Moon so a control-dominate relationship; and Pa’s rigid Saturn in Aquarius opposed Donald’s Mars, indicating harshness and lack of sympathy. Not too dissimilar to Putin’s crossovers, see previous post.

Fred Trump had a bleak, emotionally chilly chart with an Air Grand Trine of Sun Saturn Pluto; plus an explosive Mars Uranus in Capricorn opposition Neptune. And oddly enough Melania is just like his stalwart Scottish mother Mary – a Sun Saturn in Taurus.

As to when Donald Trump will run into the buffers? I always reckoned if his explosive Solar Arc Uranus conjunct Mars (in place this summer and for a few months ahead) didn’t get him, 2019 would. He looks disappointed this November and December as tr Neptune opposes his Jupiter/Pluto midpoint. Ebertin describes this as: cheating and suffering damage without being aware of it.

Where the real aggro kicks in is from mid February 2019 onwards with a run of enraged, trapped and scary Pluto hard aspects to his Mars/Uranus and then his Mars/Saturn as well as opposing his Saturn – those run on and off till late 2020. That is a punishing amount of pressure, which he’ll try to brass-neck his way out of initially but it’ll keep on coming. His relationship chart with the USA also shows April 2019 as the start of a two year run of the country losing its rag with him (perhaps before depending on the Moon’s position).

His Solar Return from June 2019 for the year thereafter is brutally suppressive with Saturn Pluto in the 10th opposition Mars in the 4th as the driving rod of a Water Grand Trine of Mars to Neptune to Moon. Plus a head-in-the-clouds, ever-optimistic Sun opposition Jupiter square Neptune.

Nothing is certain and he’s been through meltdown phases in his life before and shamelessly hauled himself out of the murk. But he’s in his 70s living a very unfit lifestyle with less energy.

The one name Putin brought up unprompted was Bill Browder, the investment banker whose campaigning against Russian corruption brought in the Magnitsky Act which has frozen oligarch (and probably Putin’s) assets abroad. See older posts below.

And the FBI/US Attorney’s office (not Mueller) have charged a Russian woman, Maria Butina, with spying for Moscow by “infiltrating organisations having influence in American politics, for the purpose of advancing the interests of the Russian Federation”. It’s though the organisation referred to is the National Rifle Association (NRA).

Born 10 November 1988, she’s a Sun Scorpio (like the NRA), in her case conjunct Pluto and in the NRA’s Sun opposition Pluto  – so cut from the same cloth. She’s also got a risk-taking Mars in Aries square Uranus Saturn and Neptune. Her Jupiter is opposition the NRA’s Mercury, to bring a veneer of good feeling but her Neptune is conjunct the NRA’s Mars Saturn so she’ll be an undermining connection. The relationship chart is formidably ruthless with a composite T Square of Mars opposition Pluto square Sun Mercury – together they could wreak havoc but as a pairing it can be equally destructive if/when it falls apart then

She’s on a run of swampy, uncertain and confidence-eroding Neptune transits till late 2019; with a few ups but generally into catastrophe time from January 2019 till the year end and worsening in 2020/2021.

The NRA are facing setbacks this year with tr Saturn conjunct their Saturn Mars and square their Venus; and in a total muddle in 2018/2019 with tr Pluto square Neptune which can be scandal-prone.

BILL BROWDER Post March 10 2018  The Skripal attempted assassinations have brought the Sergei Magnitsky affair back into the headlines, as well as Deutsche Bank money-laundering suspect Russian funds into the New York property market, which may impact on the Mueller Investigation.

Magnitsky was a Russian lawyer, imprisoned after reporting officials for major fraud and died as a result of a beating. (More Magnitsky details in old post below.)

His former employer financier Bill Browder is still fighting his corner, relentlessly lobbying governments to sanction corrupt Russians laundering their money in the West. His book Red Notice: How I Became Putin’s Number 1 Enemy is being made into a film – Amal Clooney is his lawyer.

Browder, who was deported and had his Moscow investment fund expropriated by corrupt officials, said in an interview (below): ‘The reality is that the entire Russian government is the mafia.’ He describes it as a ‘gangster state.’ And he gave evidence this week to a UK Commons select committee and said: “I believe they want to kill me.  They haven’t figured out a way yet where they can kill me and get away with it.”

His Magnitsky Act, intended to impose visa sanctions and asset freezes on corrupt officials, has now been introduced in seven countries including Britain, the US and Canada. As a result he lives in a “warzone”, receiving numerous death threats: text messages and voicemails from unregistered Moscow numbers.

A few years ago the Russian prime minister Dmitry Medvedev told reporters in a briefing: ‘it is a shame Sergei Magnitsky is dead and Bill Browder is still alive and running around’. In 2015, he says, US intelligence authorities alerted him to an illegal rendition plot being formulated against him.

Browder, born 23 April 1964 Chicago, Illinois, is a Sun, Jupiter, Mercury in Taurus trine Uranus Pluto in Virgo – suited to a money business, stubborn, rebellious, not one to budge easily; especially with Saturn in Pisces opposing his Uranus Pluto. His Mars in pro-active Aries is under assault from a tr Pluto square, 2017/18, finishing this September/October, which is not only frustrating but also high-risk.

His relationship chart with Putin is stressed and aggravated with a Yod of Mars sextile Saturn inconjunct Sun. And it will be under extraordinary pressure in 2018/19 with tr Pluto square the composite Sun. Browder’s Mars opposes Putin’s Saturn Neptune in Libra and squares Putin’s Uranus – so he will be a thorn in Putin’s flesh.

Despite Putin being a walkover for this election he does not look remotely happy or clear headed with tr Pluto moving to square his Neptune from late March till late 2019 – which tends to be devastating and scandal-prone.

The Labour MP Yvette Cooper, chairwoman of the home affairs select committee has pressed this week for police to reopen investigations into 14 suspicious deaths in Britain linked to Russia in recent years. This would include Russian financier Alexander Perepilichnyy, who died while jogging in the UK in 2012, after handing information to Browder’s firm with information on the people behind Magnitsky’s murder. Despite US intelligence agencies saying there was Russian involvement in his death, the Surrey Police ruled out murder.


July 25 2017 Post.

The drip drip of toxic info keeps coming about the Trump dynasty’s Russia connection. This is just background about one, now deceased, piece of a jigsaw that is slowly coming together, involving Russian money-laundering through the New York property market and through the German Deustche Bank, already under investigation for same, whom certain Trumps had significant dealings with and loans therefrom.

Sergei Magnitsky was a Russian lawyer/accountant, arrested after accusing Russian officials of tax fraud. He died a year later in custody after beatings in 2009. As a result of his death, the Magnitsky Act came into being which put banking restrictions on Russian officials implicated in human rights abuses. It’s those sanctions which Putin is keen/desperate to get lifted. The lawyer involved in last year’s meet with Don Jnr and Jared Kushner is heavily involved with the main players in the above.

Magnitsky, born 8 April 1972 in Odessa, Ukraine, was an Aries Sun in a rebellious/activist opposition to Uranus. He also had a communicative Air Grand Trine of Pluto trine Saturn Venus Mars trine North Node (Moon) in Aquarius with Pluto opposition Mercury – so a crusader (NNode in Aquarius), gutsy with Pluto Saturn Mars, though maybe not too practical. He also had Neptune opposition Saturn Mars Venus which formed the boundary of his Half Grand Sextile – idealistic, slightly fanatical or head in the clouds, but talented. When he died tr Neptune was squaring his Solar Arc Uranus opposition Sun; tr Saturn was just over the conjunction to his Pluto and trine his North Node. His reforming Uranus was conjunct Vladimir Putin’s rigid authoritarian Saturn (Sun Neptune) with Magnitsky’s Saturn Venus Mars falling in Putin’s secret 8th conjunct his Gemini Moon so arousing anger.

This year the Magnitsky family lawyer fell/was pushed from a 4th storey window and seriously injured.

Add on:  As ever with any story involving Russia, high finance and money-laundering the waters get exceeding muddy.

A slightly different view from:

There are however incontrovertible facts.

  1. Magnitsky was beaten in prison, denied medical treatment and died.
  2. Russian money-laundering through US and indeed UK property deals is an accepted fact.
  3. Deutsche Bank in May 2017 agreed to pay $41 million to settle Federal Reserve allegations that its U.S. operations failed to maintain adequate protections against money laundering, the latest in a string of fines that have cost the German lender billions of dollars. Deutsche Bank has recently reached settlements with the U.K. and New York State’s Department of Financial Services over trades that allegedly helped wealthy Russiansmove some $10 billion out of the country.