UK 2008 to 2016 – desperate for change at any price *update


The financial crash started with the sub-prime mortgage crisis building through 2007, exacerbated by major banks risky lending practices over-leveraging bad debt, which resulted in the Lehman Brothers collapse on 15 September 2008.

Pluto moved into Capricorn for the first time in January 2008 setting the scene for what followed, zig zagging back into Sagittarius through mid year and settling in Capricorn by December 2008 for its sixteen year stay.

2007 had the uncertain, neurotic Neptune opposition Saturn in wannabe-important Leo. By fall 2008 tr Saturn was in Virgo heading for the economically unstable opposition to Uranus which ran on till late 2009; with the disruptive tr Uranus in later Pisces in orb to a square to Pluto in early Capricorn; and tr Saturn moving into Libra in a hardship-bringing opposition to Pluto in 2010.

Pluto in Capricorn was the major trigger but Saturn Uranus and Saturn Pluto coming hard on its heels made the financial situation worse. Pluto, the planet of transformation, exerting its considerable pressure on Capricorn, which favours the status quo, is traditionally thought of as collapsing government and financial systems with an eye to rebuilding better on the far side.

The revolutionary tr Uranus square tr Pluto running right through till 2016, which triggered the Arab Spring, was in place for all of David Cameron’s premiership in the UK – with little evidence of major change in the country, so there would be an undertow of rebellious feeling seeking radical change, that had not found an outlet. 2013/2014 saw the tr Uranus square tr Pluto hitting on the UK Sun; before moving onto the UK North Node and then Moon. The Brexit referendum came at the end of that five year upswell of wanting change, any kind of change, even if it meant stepping out into the unknown.

When the vote was taken in June 2016 on the UK chart tr Pluto was by then moving through the UK 4th house bringing a mutinous mood amongst the populace; with the Solar Arc Sun in a jolting square to the deeply-rooted 8th house Mars in Taurus; with the Solar Arc MC in an even more volcanic square to the UK Mars by 2017.

In a way with hindsight it seems almost inevitable – a giant wake up call to a country that had got too stuck in its ways with politicians and financiers seemingly incapable and certainly unwilling to make the sweeping and profound changes that Pluto always demands and the voters clearly wanted.

The EU became the scapegoat for all the subterranean anger that was bubbling. Although immigration may have been a key issue, the unpalatable truth was that the Blair Government’s open-door policy for non-EU migrants was really more of an issue. The EU workers just landed on top of a country already swamped.

The media weren’t remotely helpful – Murdoch et al. There’s no lack of flaws in the EU to criticise – overweighty, grossly expensive bureaucracy with bloated, unelected technocrats throwing their weight around. But the advantages weren’t sufficiently highlighted. There was a surprising statistic the other day that UK famers get more out of the Common Agricultural Policy funds than do French farmers. And you wouldn’t know that from the Sun or the Express.

Add on: The Arab astrologers of olden times believed the essential function of astrology was to understand the past. Hindsight is much denigrated but it’s often only with distance that the patterns become clear.

Was Brexit inevitable? Yes and no. Uranus Pluto upheavals can go one of three ways – into anarchy and chaos as the old structures are violently torn down and nothing takes their place (Libya); repressive, control-freak Pluto desperate to uphold the status quo wins the war and dictatorial powers are imposed (Egypt, and eventually Syria); or the collapse of the old way leads to a rebirth with hopes of a better future (Tunisia, cross fingers). In more stable western democracies the same forces are at work though in a less obvious way.

It’s the great universal battle between stability and creativity. Uranian creativity needs a degree of chaos to flourish, but too much anarchy leads to demolition, not to lasting achievement; Pluto often causes its own downfall because of its inability to adapt. The transitions of change are impossible to negotiate if total control is demanded at every stage.

The UK has an extraordinarily Fixed chart – as indeed does the EU – which gives endurance and staying power but is ill-designed for change and flexibility. It takes a cataclysmic convulsion to force through necessary adjustments. Ironically, or maybe not, the UK sector at most risk with Brexit is the financial one. If they had been cut down to size after 2008 and forced to own and pay for their mistakes, the UK might have been in a different mood when it came to the referendum.

But it’s also true that in any relationship when individual partners are moving through their own transition periods it becomes obvious their trajectories are taking them down a different route. When the 2016 Brexit vote occurred the UK’s Solar Arc/Progressed Midheaven, which indicates the immediate priorities for the country’s direction and ambition, was exactly opposite the EU’s 11th house Uranus – indicating a divergence from the EU’s future networking plans for members. The EU’s Solar Arc/Progressed midheaven is now within 18 months of being opposition the UK’s Pluto, suggesting an impasse as the UK feels trapped by the EU’s stance and aims.

Standing back far enough to see that the chaos which is undoubtedly coming post-Brexit is part and parcel of an overdue correction that would have come one way or another might make it easier to digest. Brexit is merely one vehicle for driving change into action. There could, and perhaps should, have been other ways. Twas ever thus.

At the same time the obdurate EU have been turning their faces to the wall and resisting the call to renewal. Their Solar Arc midheaven will conjunct their hidden, dirty-dealings-behind-the-scenes, control-freaky 12th house Pluto within a year; at the same time as their Solar Arc Pluto pounds confusion and devastation on the head of their 2nd house financial Neptune. And they, like the UK, will be buffeted and battered by tr Uranus hitting on their Fixed planets for several years thereafter.

“Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.” JFK.


7 thoughts on “UK 2008 to 2016 – desperate for change at any price *update

  1. Interesting thoughts – particularly in the updated section. The couple of observations I would make re the Referendum:

    The winning side didn’t campaign on a platform of change at any cost – it was really change at no cost. Having your cake and eating it. Stopping immigration and having money to spare to put into the NHS. Warnings about downsides were successfully labelled as “Project Fear”. Polling of leave voters at the time showed that only about a quarter thought their would be any adverse economic impact and only 8% thought they would be personally affected. Polling also showed that while a majority of all voters thought that immigration was too high when asked how much money they would be prepared to lose personally per week to reduce it, the top answer was nothing.

    Obviously there were mainly motivations behind the way people voted, but it seems to me that a strong element was more about reaction than revolution, and mainly a reaction against cultural changes in the last few decades.

    In these circumstances, with an original victory margin of only 52/48, no swing behind the winning result, and demographics favouring the remain side with every passing day, if Brexit goes ahead and does not bring any immediate economic upsides (Davis has suggested this might take 15 years, Rees Mogg has mentioned 50) – unless the EU completely implodes, we end up rejoining, don’t we?

    Strangely, the referendum result has engaged and enthused British people in favour of the EU in a way that I have never seen before – cf the march on Saturday – maybe that’s the ‘phoenix from the ashes’ of this episode.

    Meantime, it’s all a mess.

  2. I love your column Marjorie but you are always clear on your feelings towards Trump and also on Brexit.
    So sometimes I get the impression you could be making the picture fit your views.
    This isn’t the articulate post I would like to write because I’m rushing off somewhere, however in a nutshell, I feel a little less of your anger towards the subjects ‘ would the last grown up to leave turn off the lights’ for example might be a less biased viewpoint.
    At the least, Brexit is a shambles because of the passive aggressive way politicians who haven’t wanted to leave, have led us into the ‘ I told you so’ situation .
    It’s that reason it’s a dog’s breakfast, not astrology.

    • Alexis Instead of making ad hominem attacks (trash the messenger to obliterate the message) have the grace to address the astrology and point out where you think there could be alternative interpretations. Just because my interpretations don’t fit with what you want doesn’t make them wrong.

  3. Thank you, Marjorie, beautifully summed up and makes a lot of things clear. But trying to explain this to dyed in the wool Brexiteers is impossible.

  4. Marjorie

    Thanks for encapsulating so neatly what I have been struggling to say.

    The storm brewed, the clouds became charged and then the lightning bolt hit one of the of highest buildings in the political landscape which happened to be the UKs relationship with the EU.

    Brussels was not necessarily to blame for the situation. Indeed, much of the responsibility lay with past UK governments run by both Labour and Conservative parties. However, British politicians and civil servants had a habit of using the EU as cover for their own policy failures. I think I lost count of the times some unpopular or unsuccessful initiative was passed off as being the responsibility of the EU Commission. It made life very easy for UK politicians and civil servants. For example, it is amazing to think that the UK still had a Department of Trade up to 2007 even though membership of the European Community had effectively made it redundant decades before when the EU Commission took responsibility for negotiating all trade treaties. The EU’s own constitution with its lack of accountability played into that scenario. Often,it was very difficult to determine who had made particular decisions as the ball was kicked endlessly backwards and forwards between national governments and Brussels. I think one of the main reasons many individuals in Parliament and government are so reluctant to push through Brexit more forcefully is that they are fully aware that their preferred tactic of redirecting or redistributing responsibility to others is going to be much more difficult in the future. Politicians have got into the habit of wanting the privileges and perks of the job without having to account for their decisions. Or to quote the old dictum – “Power without responsibility – the prerogative of the harlot down the ages”. It is hardly surprising it has corrupted the political process. A world in which everyone is responsible is a world in which no one is responsible.

    The one group in the UK who have not been able to evade their duty has been the ordinary people. In the past decade since the financial crisis they have held directly accountable for picking up the bill for the failure by their rulers to regulate how banks and other institutions operated. This has come in the form of lower wages, higher taxes and reduced services. The EU Referendum with its simple yes/no ballot was an ideal opportunity to express that discontent since unlike a UK General Election under the first past the post system every vote cast in June 2016 really did count at a national level

    My own feeling about the astrology is that there are two energies fighting it out at the moment. Pluto and Saturn in Capricorn demands meaningful constructive change but that is being resisted by Neptune in Pisces. The latter is a particularly noticeable in the ‘adults behaving like children ‘ emotional response from all sides following the EU Referendum result. This allied to the Neptunian trait of thinking that everyone is responsible so no one is responsible is why we are in for such a bumpy ride.

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