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Scotty Bowers – the less savoury face of Hollywood


Scotty Bowers, for decades the secret procurer for Hollywood celebrities of both sexes, has died. His memoir in 2012 named reams of names, all dead – Lana Turner, Ava Gardner, Cary Grant, Randolph Scott, Vincent Price, Vivien Leigh, Edith Piaf, Tyrone Power, Tennessee Williams, Noel Coward and George Cukor. Although many thought his lurid tales were exaggerated, Gore Vidal said he hadn’t lied and his services were an open secret in Hollywood, particularly among closeted gay men and lesbians, who had to keep their romantic lives under wraps. He also reminisced about Prince George, Duke of Kent and “Eddy and Wally,” the Duke and Duchess of Windsor: “Like her husband, she definitely preferred homosexual sex.”

Born 1 July 1923 in Ottowa, Illinois, he had a farmer father, forced out in the depression to become a prison guard, who divorced his mother. He fought in World War 11 as a paratrooper indulging his bisexuality along the way which he turned into a lifelong career after he demobbed, though he improbably said he never received money for his services either as a prostitute or a pimp.

He had an extraordinarily tough-minded, bleak and lucky chart with his Sun in a controlling conjunction to Pluto with both in an unyielding square to Saturn; and both also were in a fantasy-bubble and ‘healing’ Water Grand Trine to Jupiter in Scorpio and Uranus in Pisces. He may also have had an Air Grand Trine of Saturn trine Venus Mercury in Gemini trine an Aquarius Moon, so he would be able to detach his feelings from his lifestyle. An Air Water chart is difficult to balance, often ending up in a wobble between feelings and thoughts.

His Uranus was not only in a flirtatious and inconstant square to his social-butterfly Venus in Gemini, it was also on the focal point of a Yod to Neptune sextile Saturn. Such a Yod marks him out as a libertarian and a catalyst, a trailblazer in his way, always fighting against convention and at times the law. He was never arrested since he kept all the information in his head.

A different kind of life, for sure.

Elijah Cummings – catalyst and conscience for the USA


(John Lewis)

Elijah Cummings, a Democratic congressman widely respected on both sides of the house despite his criticism of Trump has died suddenly of long-standing health problems. He was a leading figure in the Trump-Ukraine impeachment inquiry and had a long career in Maryland politics and civil rights activism before winning a congressional seat in 1996.

He was born 18 January 1951 in Baltimore, Maryland, with sharecropper parents. In school, a counsellor early on told him he was too slow to learn and spoke poorly, and he would never fulfil his dream of becoming a lawyer. “I was devastated,” he said. “My whole life changed. I became very determined”. He graduated from school with honours, went to college and subsequently took a law degree.

He was a late Sun Capricorn; with a focal point, executive-ability Saturn in fair-minded Libra which squared onto a sharp-witted and outspoken Mercury in Capricorn opposition Uranus. He also had a do-or-die determined Mars in uncompromising Aquarius opposition Pluto. He would face many frustrations and setbacks in his life with a tough Saturn and trapped Mars Pluto but he rose about the challenges and kept on going.

He did not get on with Trump which was unsurprising and obvious with a hostile-dislike composite Mars (conjunct Algol) square Saturn; and a suspicious composite Sun opposition Neptune.

But his Sun was exactly conjunct the USA Pluto making him a key figure for the country through his efforts to change it for the better – against resistance. The relationship chart between himself and the USA had a passionately enthusiastic composite Sun Venus Mars (maybe New Moon) and a confident Jupiter Pluto. More’s the pity he’s the one who went.

Alain Hades – astrology Scorpio style


Alain Hades, regarded as one of the great French astrologers has died. He was also a prolific author of astrology books as well as over 30 spy and science fiction novels.

I’m not familiar with his work but one critique said he could be overly negative about ‘bad’ aspects in a chart – that he was ‘not very diplomatic and reluctant to think positively when things go wrong.’

Born 6 November 1931 6.20pm St Germain en Laye, France, he was a Sun Scorpio on his Descendant with Mercury, Venus also in Scorpio in his 7th. He’d be persuasively and powerfully charming but also inclined to be overly penetrating in the way he put his views across. He had the Depression signature of Pluto in Cancer opposition Saturn in Capricorn on his Midheaven square Uranus in Aries in his 12th – definitely innovative with such an emphasised Uranus, and designed for astrology; also unyielding with a depressive streak.

He was an entertainer and performer with Jupiter in flamboyant Leo in his theatrical 5th house square his Sun and trine Uranus; with creative Neptune also in the 5th in a showbusiness, publicity-attracting square to Mars.

An interesting man who certainly had a work ethic.

Michael Collins – a chart fit for a legend

Michael Collins, a mythic figure in the early-20th-century Irish struggle for independence, a revolutionary, soldier and politician, was born on 18th October 1890 at 2.30 am Clonakilty, Ireland. His family had republican connections back to an 18th century rebellion. He fought in the 1916 Easter Rising and the subsequent War of Independence, gaining fame as a guerrilla warfare strategist, directing successful attacks on British forces. After the ceasefire and the creation of the Irish Free State, he moved into politics but a civil war broke out and he was assassinated by forces (IRA) who opposed the Anglo-Irish Treaty. As ever conspiracy theories swirled around his death because the gunman responsible had fought for the British Army before joining the IRA.

Collins had a Libra Sun conjunct Uranus, making him a mix of rebellious and politic; though his Sun square a 5th house Mars in Capricorn would give him a combative edge; and his Uranus squared Jupiter adding an adventurous, risk-taking streak. What dominates his chart, however, is an Air Grand Trine of Pluto Neptune in Gemini on his Midheaven trine Mercury in Libra trine Jupiter in Aquarius, formed into a Kite by Pluto Neptune opposition a 4th house Venus in fiery Sagittarius.

It is a delightfully descriptive chart. Air Grand Trines can be ideologues, idealists and wedded to their beliefs. Pluto in the 10th as well as controlling, can become a legend of their time; and Pluto Neptune was very much at the centre of the zeitgeist when he was born with associations to stratospheric ambitions as well as scandals. Hitler and Mao also had Neptune Pluto in Gemini though in their cases in the 8th and 5th respectively. The driving planet of Collins’ Air Grand Trine, formed into an even more talented Kite was the 4th house Venus – love of country and roots.

His Pluto Neptune opposition Venus also squared onto Saturn in Virgo on his Ascendant which would make him tough minded from Saturn Pluto, wishing for a fairer society from Saturn Neptune; passionate and idealistic from Pluto Neptune Venus. A Mutable Saturn on the point of a T Square on the Ascendant would give him a reserved appearance, an initial suspiciousness on meeting people, and also a humility and a serious approach to organizational matters with executive abilities.

His Moon in intensely emotional Scorpio was sextile Mars on one side and Saturn on the other, so he’d be used to hardship. His mother was a powerful influence and a considerable personality – obvious from his Pluto in the 10th as well as his Moon aspects.

A complicated man, not an easy temperament, but supremely capable with his moments of levity from two 5th house planets.

When he was assassinated his focal point Saturn had moved by Solar Arc to exactly square his Mars which in traditional astrology was the classic assassination signature. With tr Neptune in an undermining opposition to his Solar Arc Mars.

Portugal – a long road to recovery


Portugal, once one of the EU’s basket cases, is now applauded as a booming success. But behind the economic growth lies chronic under-investment in public services and infrastructure. Tourism is at record levels, there’s an upswing in the housing market, a growing tech sector, strong exports and foreign investment coming in. But the fear is that another recession could prove problematic and despite the recovery and the fall of unemployment, there’s a sense of precariousness with low wages a major worry.

The Portugal October 5 1910 9am Lisbon chart is on tenterhooks at the moment – both buoyed up by tr Pluto square the Jupiter till December, but also nerve-stretched as tr Pluto is conjunct the Uranus and opposition Neptune which is much less predictable and stable. Those run till late this year. Tr Uranus will have a few jolts and surprises in store as it is opposes the Scorpio Moon and is conjunct the 6th house Saturn between now and early 2020 which may have implications for employment or the health service.

Assuming the start time is accurate then tr Neptune will be in an undermining and indecisive square to the Solar Arc Midheaven till early 2020 as well. It’ll continue up and down on this chart till 2022 is clear with Solar Arc Pluto conjunct Jupiter for a distinct upswing and square the Uranus Neptune for disruptions and anxieties.

The 25 April 1974 5.15pm Lisbon chart is relatively similar with upheavals through 2021/22 as tr Pluto square the Uranus; along with at least some financial good news.

The Bank of Portugal, 15 November 1975, is jumpy at the moment with conflicting policies and erratic circumstances running into next spring; looking more cheerful in 2022 and then facing challenges in 2023 – so ups and downs.

Oscar Wilde – more talent than sense


Oscar Wilde, the most popular playwright of his day and still a treasure trove of witty sayings in common currency would have been 165 this week. He led a charmed life until he foolishly challenged his lover’s father in a libel suit, lost and was himself charged with gross indecency. Despite an open chance to flee abroad he arrogantly or stubbornly refused to go, partly on the bidding of his Irish nationalist mother, and was imprisoned for two years which led to his early death at 46.

Born 18 October 1854 3am Dublin (time unverified), his father was an Anglo-Irish doctor and his mother a poet and supporter of Irish revolutionaries. He was educated at Trinity Dublin and Oxford where he gained a reputation for being an aesthete. An early romantic relationship failed and he married Constance when he was 30. After a literary and journalistic career he wrote his novel Dorian Gray and then a series of successful plays – Salome, A Woman of No importance, Lady Windermere’s Fan, An Ideal Husband, The Importance of Being Earnest.

He had a Libra Sun square Jupiter in Capricorn, which on this birth time would make him extravagant with money, overly confident and an entertainer. He had an intense Mercury in Scorpio opposition a quirky and outspoken Uranus square a flashy Leo Moon – focal point Moons are often found in charts of people in the public eye who crave an audience. His Mars in flamboyant Sagittarius was also in his 3rd house of communication. Saturn in Gemini was in a creative square to Neptune which latter sat on his Descendant, suggesting an uncommitted approach to close relationships; with his Saturn on his Midheaven sextile the Moon and trine his Sun. He had an influential, though trapped Pluto in the 8th in a stressed quincunx to Mars.

It’s not a very together chart – though the Harmonics bring more aspects into play with a very marked leaving-a-legacy 17H, a writer’s 21H, superstar 22H, break-through-genius 13H, and creative 5H and 7 H.

When he foolishly leapt into suing the Marquess of Queensberry, father of Lord Alfred Douglas, for libel for calling him a sodomite, the transiting Neptune Pluto in Gemini was crossing his midheaven. Not only is Neptune Pluto associated with scandals, it also warps judgement, leading to confusion and can ultimately lead to devastation. When he was sentenced his Solar Arc Pluto was conjunct his Saturn which is dead-halt and depressing.

His benighted mother evidently swore she’d never talk to him again if he backed down from the fight with the Marquess of Queensberry, such was her dislike of English aristocracy. Her persuasions effectively condemned him to death because of the toll a harsh prison regime took on his health. He died three years after being released.

His mother Jane, 27 December 1821, had a fanatical and erratic Sun, Uranus, Neptune in Capricorn which squared Oscar’s Venus; and her Saturn Jupiter in Aries fell in his 8th opposition his Sun. Their relationship chart had a dominating, power-struggling composite Mars opposition Pluto. All such a waste since he could have spent productive years abroad without any problem. Even the authorities were making it easy for him to escape.

Spain – the old authoritarianism rules


‘Crushing prison terms’ of thirteen years apiece were handed out to Catalonia separatist leaders for organising a referendum on self-determination in 2017. It has brought violent protestors back onto the street in Girona and Barcelona, still aggrieved at the punitive response from Madrid’s heavy-handed suppression when they were first arrested. Other separatist leaders are in exile to escape prison. A UN inquiry deemed that the pre-trial imprisonment and any subsequent sentences would be in violation of international law.

“This is the old Spain reasserting itself”, said Carles Puigdemont, former Catalonia president, at present in Belgium. Far-right nationalists think the sentences were not severe enough.

Spain, 22 November 1975 12.45 Madrid, is in upheaval with another election due in early November when tr Uranus will be exactly on the opposition to the Uranus, moving to square the Saturn late December and through January 2020 – that will bring an authoritarian streak to the fore to clash mightily with forces of rebellion. There are also hard aspect crossovers between Solar Arc Pluto to the Spain Mercury; and Solar Arc Mercury to the Spain Pluto – which suggests a hardening of attitudes, bitter and vengeful debate and high tension.

The old reunification of Spain 19 January 1479 JC chart works remarkably well and also suggests a mood of panicky failure running throughout 2019 and heightening mid November to mid December, with another highly uncertain patch in February 2020.

Assuming the start time for the 1975 chart is accurate, then tr Saturn and tr Pluto are both wading through the 12th – so whatever light is waiting at the end of the tunnel won’t become obvious until the shift over to Aquarius picks up gradually in 2021 and with more bite two years later as tr Saturn Jupiter and then Pluto cross the Spain Ascendant for an image makeover and a revisioning of identity.

Will Smith – Gemini Man fails to hit the mark


Gemini Man directed by Oscar-winning Ang Lee, starring the world’s most bankable actor Will Smith and produced by the super-successful Jerry Bruckheimer (Top Gun, Pirates, Enemy of the State, CSI etc) should have been a soar-away triumph. Instead critics have savaged “a silly sci-fi thriller about a cloned hitman”, called it a “witlessly hackneyed setup” drowning “in endless spy cliches, half-heartedly generic twists, forgettable dialogue and non-existent characterization.” Oops.

Rotten Tomatoes have it at 26%, Metacritic at 39% and opening box office was a disappointing $7.5 million against the hoped for $20 to $30 million. It’s questionable whether it can rescue the $140 million costs from foreign box office.

Will Smith, 25 September 1968 9.47pm (from memory) Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, has an entertainers’ 5th house Libra Sun in a quirky conjunction to Uranus in final degree Virgo; with Mercury and Venus in Libra also in the performing 5th. But what really dominates his chart is one of those odd Saturn focal point Yods from a pushily confident Jupiter Pluto sextile an intense Moon Neptune in Scorpio.

Yods always have a fated quality and especially so with Saturn prominent. He started out of school in rap music with considerable success but ended up with a nearly $3 million tax debt in the late 1980s. He was struggling financially when he was picked up by NBC for a sit com and within six years by the mid 1990s was a prime box office draw. At that point the triple conjunction of Saturn, Uranus, Neptune in Capricorn had all been in hard aspect to his focal point Saturn. It usually takes a major shift to get Yods onto the right track.

He’s in the middle of another one at the moment with tr Pluto square his Saturn in 2019/2020 which will be tough going, requiring considerable effort to move ahead – pushing boulders uphill and can be discouraging. Tr Pluto is also moving in sextile to both legs of the Yod until late 2021 which will add another layer of pressure; and his Solar Arc Sun Uranus will conjunct his Neptune and Moon also for another three years ahead. All of which will prompt him to shift him onto a different track.

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