After Nicola – losing sight of the key problems

 There’s a curious snarl-up on the hustings to replace Nicola Sturgeon as Scotland First Minister and SNP leader with the two main contenders at odds over LGBT+ rights. Humza Yousaf, the Health Secretary, despite being a practising Muslim is pro, saying “I don’t legislate on the basis of my faith.” Whereas Kate Forbes, heretofore the favourite, a member of the Free Church of Scotland, lost prominent supporters and Green Party backing by stating firmly she was against gender self-identification and would have voted against equal marriage legislation. [The Free Church – the Wee Frees – is a socially conservative, evangelical Calvinist denomination which is against abortion and same sex marriage.]

  Nicola Sturgeon will be a hard act to follow having won three general elections and two for the Scottish parliament. But she leaves behind ‘a torrid sequence of troubles, from a costly fiasco over ferry contracts which has become emblematic of SNP misgovernance to swelling criticism of the party’s failures in delivering public services.’

  The likelihood is that whoever takes over immediately will prove no more effective than Sturgeon in tackling the moribund economy, drug and health problems and may not last.

  Both Yousaf and Forbes have their Sun in mid Aries close to the SNP Sun Mars in Aries – so they fit the ethos of the party.

 Yousaf, 7 April 1985, Glasgow, looks the more likely at the moment. He has a lively and charming Sun Venus in Aries trine Uranus and sextile Jupiter in Aquarius; with his Jupiter in a confident square to Pluto and an ultra-determined Mars North Node in Taurus also square Jupiter. He looks rattled and insecure from mid March with tr Uranus conjunct his Mars but does have a touch of uplift from late March with tr Pluto sextile his Jupiter/North Node midpoint. If he does take over, it’ll be rocky, not to say disaster-prone after June this year and sagging into 2025.

 Kate Forbes, 6 April 1990, is a highly strung Sun Aries square Neptune Uranus in Capricorn with her Uranus in a lucky opposition to Jupiter; and a do-or-die-determined Mars in Aquarius conjunct North Node square Pluto. Without a birth time there isn’t much of cheer showing up on her chart – jolts, jangles and confusion.

  Though both do have tr Jupiter conjunct their Sun in late March which is usually upbeat.

  Ash Regan, 8 March 1974, is generally regarded as an outlier – she is a Sun Pisces with an ideologue’s Air Grand Trine of Mars in Gemini trine Pluto trine Venus; and another Air Grand Trine of Saturn trine Uranus trine Jupiter Mercury in Aquarius. Tr Saturn will dampen her enthusiasm in March as it crosses her Mercury and Jupiter. Her time may come in later years and this will give her name recognition.

 Humza Yousaf in relation to the SNP holds out a promise of success; whereas Kate Forbes’s relationship chart with the SNP hints at an underlying hostility and doubt.

22 thoughts on “After Nicola – losing sight of the key problems

  1. Are you sure drugs policy in Scotland is under Westminster? Scotland has a minister for drug policy.

    According to Wikipedia…


    The specific responsibilities of the minister are:

    -Tackling and reducing the harm of drug misuse
    -Supporting the rehabilitation and recovery of those living with drug addiction
    -Reducing the number of deaths from drugs

    I suspect Scot government is unlikely to allocate a minister for something it is not responsible for and take political ownership of the problem.

  2. Humza Yousaf, failed at every cabinet appointment he has held, and now at health what a waste and a tragedy. And by the way he was absent for the vote on gay marriage, Wes Streeting ( Labour ) is now demanding why ?

    • Apparently he was pressured by his mosque. After all Islam is the fastest growing religion in the UK and perhaps the black flag of islam will fly over Holyrood even before Downing St. Muslim countries certainly have the clout to bring that about so long as they have some political foothold.

  3. Curious to see that Forbes was born on 6 April, Yousaf 7 April and the SNP set up on 7 April.
    In my slender experience, the closer an individual’s planets sit on the planets of any organisation he or she wants to be head of, the better the chance of becoming the head. It is no accident that the more successful prime ministers tend to have planets that closely conjoin or at least are trine or sextile the planets etc in the UK 1801 chart. It also helps if the planets on the day of the election (27 March at noon) closely aspect the individual’s chart.
    Both Yousaf’s and Forbes’s charts aspect the SNP chart pretty well, and Regan’s isn’t hopeless either.
    But if you look at the chart for the close of the election on 27 March, which is apparently going to be at noon, Jupiter, Mercury and Chiron are very close to both Yousaf’s and Forbes’s chart, though Jupiter is closer to Yousaf’s sun, while Chiron and Mercury are exactly on Forbes’s sun. However, Uranus is exactly on Yousaf’s Mars. So something unexpected will happen to him that day, something that he had not anticipated.
    Chiron transits over the sun are not without their benefits in the greater scheme of things, but they can be quite literal woundings to the body or soul, tough or painful experiences which help us grow up, look after ourselves or others etc. It is difficult to speculate in the absence of birth data. The birth data is sitting in the Registrar’s office in Edinburgh waiting for someone to go and dig it out! I am putting my neck out here, and I expect to have it well severed in due course, but on the basis of this I would say that Yousaf will get in as first minister for the time being, though I think it will be an absolute bed of nails. Forbes will be disappointed to miss it, and it will all be quite close, but she may be wise to be out of the current difficulties. She is young enough to be able to have another crack at the position later in her life, when she has had more experience and perhaps when she has easier domestic circumstances. Not getting in now may be a blessing in disguise for her. Yousaf may well find that following Sturgeon is no easy task. Quite clearly a lot of SNP initiatives are not going well at the moment, and unfortunately quite a few of them are of the SNP’s own making: for once they can’t blame Westminster. Yousaf may find himself in the invidious position of having to deal with a series of humiliating climbdowns.
    As for Regan I don’t she will do so well. She has not had much experience as a minister, but standing in the first place will probably raise her profile overall; this will do her no harm.
    I shall be interested to see other readers’ and Marjorie’s views on the matter, though I hope we shall not see the tribalism that sometimes disfigures any discussion of anything to with Scotland or, indeed, Ireland.

  4. Interesting how all posters here are concentrated on “the underdog”, not “the favorite”, who happens to be a woman, but also, it seems, a religious bigot.

    I did read majority of people in England now identify themselves as non-Christian, but it’s absolutely stunning how fast people have lost the sight of how devastating so called Evangelical Christianity is in many parts of the World.

    And, as a provocation, I’d say, that for my right to live as a cis-woman, I would definitely take a mainline Sunni Muslim representative against an Evangelical Christian one, since the former allow abortion, even late term, to save carrier (mother) life, unlike Evangelical Christians.

    • Being pedantic, but I don’t think the Free Church of Scotland-the Wee Frees-can be considered “Evangelical” in either the American or the German sense of that word. They are hard core conservative, but not Evangelical.

      The bit that I remember about the Wee Frees is that Lord MacKay of Clashfern, the first non-Anglican Lord Chancellor since the Reformation, was a member and an Elder of the Church. As Lord Chancellor, he was also the head of the judiciary, and in that role, he attended Roman Catholic Requiem Masses for his Roman Catholic judicial colleagues, something that is strictly forbidden by the Wee Frees. He had to answer to the Church for attending those Masses and either left or was thrown out.

    • The Free Church is fundamentalist Presbyterianism as I understand it – authoritarian, raining down fire and brimstone to weeping and gnashing of teeth. Old testament emphasis on sin and punishment.
      I remember in my girl guide days being taken to a church service in Oban where a wee free minister was hurling hell and damnation from the pulpit which we all found a hoot. But then we didn’t have to live up there.
      The Baptists on the other hand on the Elgin north east coast were a delight with hymns that actually had tunes.
      I’ve moved a long way from any religious affiliations but the rigid Calvinists and old Testament thunderers stand out as being amongst the nastiest of the bunch.
      I filmed years ago on St Kilda, islands to the far north west of Scotland out in the Atlantic (next coastline North America) which had a small but sustainable population for almost a millennium until the dratted missionaries came in the 19th century. Before that they had a fairly pagan set of beliefs, which helped them cope in deep isolation, wild weather and extreme nature. Then the god botherers turned up, banned singing and dancing, built a church and insisted they go three times on a Sunday. Within 50 years the young had all escaped to the mainland and it became depopulated. There is something joyless and anti-life about the outer fringes of Protestantism.

    • Presbyterians are Calvinists so essentially believe in the predestination of the saved and the damned. Evangelicals believe humans need to accept Jesus and to be born again in Christ to find salvation. By its definition the latter requires an element of volition and free will so is incompatible Calvinism particularly in its more extreme forms.

    • Many people who attend Church are just looking for some kind of connection and spirituality. Not necessarily evangelicalism or fire and brimstone. An Astrological chart is like our DNA to a certain extent, as both contribute to us as human beings. I am not of the same persuasion as Kate Forbes, yet I will defend her opinion, as if Astrology is said to work, then how can we judge her? As she is entitled to her opinion, as we are. The 1960’s was a time when Pluto/Uranus was conjunct in Virgo, as both were moving through Virgo for several years: forging all the furies to surfaced and explode. Growing up at that time, opened up possibilities and different concepts. The baby boomers were opened to being free. Conversations and debates in the 1960’s and 70’s would not easily happen now. As sadly, Pluto transiting Capricorn, has hardened opinions – we have ended up with Pluto in Capricorn judging and pointing the finger at anyone who is not in the same group as them. All religions were started by prophets, which then became a rigid form of a mantra. I personally see religion as another form of Governing, with heads, like Kings, Presidents or PM’s. If anything, she is being honest about herself and what she believes in, like all those who are against what she believes in – so who is right?

      • It’s not so much about being right or wrong – it’s lovely she has a faith that sustains her. The problem comes as a politician when she or Yousaf impose their views on others by voting or abstaining on prospective laws which affect those who hold different views.

  5. Humza Yousaf has no regard for women’s rights at all. Perhaps Scotland needs another party leading the country. I don’t find him remotely charming.

  6. Not to mention the missing SNP funds of £600,000 and loan of £107,000 by Peter Murrell, Ms Sturgeon’s husband and Chief Executive SNP

    • Add Pluto/Saturn midpoint sitting on that Scorpio moon and that makes a very formidable combination. Although, both the Moon and Pluto planets are water, which could either makes Saturn into a bog or occasionally with transits thick mud – either way there could be a tempering of his Aries Sun/planets on a daily basis. As all that Fire and Water in the chart, playing out against each other on a daily basis could cause a lot of stress.

  7. Economy and drug policy are under Westminster control. In fact Westminster recently blocked proposed safe injection rooms in Glasgow. Health is under SG control albeit within the fixed budget Scotland gets and has the best performing NHS in the UK.
    SNP misgovernance is largely a figment of the Daily Telegraph’s imagination and is absolutely nothing compared to the utter shambles at Westminster
    Of the candidates that have put themselves forward I prefer Humza Yousaf. Katie Forbes is excellent at Chancellor but it’s too soon for her in my view. Never heard of Ash Regan so she must lack experience and be known only to party members.

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