Trump and the GOP have hitched their fates to each other, but clearly there’s no love lost between them. Trump doesn’t equate his own personal success...with party success, and the GOP’s purposes aren’t very well served by Trump’s agenda and followers, either.
This past March, I posted an article that analyzed the astrology surrounding the GOP’s fractured state and its parallels to California’s precarious, earthquake-prone status. Of course, at that time the political dilemma was the Republican primaries and way in which the GOP was being co-opted for Donald Trump’s even then-controversial campaign. Little did we know then just how controversial that campaign would become, and how disastrous it would be for what remained of GOP party integrity. The threat of earthquake seemed like an apt metaphor at the time—now, I’d have to say the situation has evolved into more of a cataclysmic hurricane. Coincidental?
I said then that “the Party is crumbling from within”—a development illustrated convincingly by the astrology—but in the wake of this past Friday’s (10/7) release of Access Hollywood tapes showing Donald Trump bragging in the most disgusting possible terms about being able to “do anything” to women because he’s a “star” (gag me with a stick), the Party of Lincoln is more like a coastal city being shredded by Hurricane force winds.
Indeed, astrology shows that these timely convergences (Hurricane Matthew with the GOP’s latest crisis) are never accidental: GOP leaders and down-ballot candidates have staged a mass evacuation from their positions of support and are fleeing for higher moral ground. Or at least higher, voter-friendly ground. On this post-Debate #2 morning (more on that stalk-fest going forward), House Speaker Paul Ryan has stated that he will “no longer defend Donald Trump.”
“In a conference call with members Monday morning, Ryan told members ‘you all need to do what's best for you and your district,’ according to someone who listened to the meeting.”
Reportedly, Ryan has not taken the important symbolic step of un-endorsing Trump, but—to the anger of some GOP members—he is withdrawing any further efforts to support him.
I’ve analyzed Trump’s chart and his chaotic tendencies repeatedly over the past year, and Trump—and the entire lunatic event we’ve been calling an election—have been the most intensely analyzed subjects ever in my experience. I’m really starting to think that the fascination we’ve all had for this lunacy has been part of the problem: by focusing so much attention on this man’s antics and on his disregard for even the most basic rules of civility and humanity, we only feed the ego-fire that seems to consume his every moment.
With fiery Mars in Leo on his Ascendant (middle wheel, triwheel below), we shouldn’t be surprised that Trump radiates narcissistic rage whenever he feels unfairly challenged (which is any time he’s challenged). In fact, this Mars loomed large on the debate stage Sunday night, as he impatiently paced the stage, scowling, and at times looming behind Clinton as she answered questions.
News commentators noted this body language, finding it threatening, creepy and, as one put it, a "pre-assault indicator." Visually there was no missing the fact that his large bulk often overshadowed Clinton’s smaller stature in the television frame. As a well-seasoned media “star,” Trump clearly knows how to upstage others, and he deployed that skill in a very menacing way here. When he was speaking, his demeanor was similarly aggressive, and though no one mentioned it much this time, he was also sniffing the whole time he was speaking.
It’s not likely Trump had a cold during both debates, but he certainly sniffed his way through both. If he has sniff-causing allergies, he could have medicated them away for an hour or two, but this time the sniffing came across even more like a nervous need to draw attention and upstage his opponent. His Leo Mars is disposed by a Gemini Sun, disposed in turn by Cancer Mercury square Aries Eris (at 6°41’ Aries, not shown), so it’s quite possible the sniffing reflects the Raging Bull persona we witnessed onstage last night, courtesy of his Mars-ASC.
The Mercury connection here speaks to how he manages to turn language and words (and maybe even sniffs) into pre-emptive strike weapons. We heard a lot this past week about the destructive nature of hurricane storm surges—Trump’s incessant word surges and aggressive over-the-top exaggerations are similarly overwhelming and destructive (to our collective morale, if not to his opponent), and they certainly speak to the aggressive restlessness of his Leo points.
In fact, Trump is very familiar with the wrestling arena (Jake La Motta was a boxer, to be fair, but the arenas are similar), and it showed in his belligerent behavior Sunday night. He seems comfortable in the aggressive, no-holds-barred, “me against the world” universe he’s created for himself in this campaign, and indeed, his Cancer-Aries square—especially involving Eris—speaks to a pugilistic worldview.
This, I believe, explains a lot about his threatening tactics, his worldview and policy stands, and his misogynistic view of women as “conquests.” The Access Hollywood and Howard Stern Show tapes should be evidence enough of this.
An epidemic of “scary clowns”
For now, let’s bring the discussion back to the long term stakes. Trump provides intoxicating entertainment for news watchers, but if we’re lucky, he’ll disappear back up that golden escalator once this circus we’re calling an election is over. Again, there are no coincidences in astrology, so it’s little wonder that we’re seeing an epidemic of “Scary Clown” incidents these days. This entire election has been shot through with mistrust over the “masks” our candidates seem to wear, and each side is more terrified than the other over what lurks behind those masks. Meanwhile, the election looms in less than a month and one of our major political parties is in crisis.
As we’ll discuss much more by the end of this story, the GOP’s future and its critical role within our 2-party system will play out over several years to come. Significantly, while Trump’s campaign has downgraded and divided the GOP, Russia appears to be attempting similar damage by hacking the Democratic party. Is it just me, or is our entire system of representative government under fire? A story for another day.
First, let’s briefly update the issues discussed in my March 1, 2016 posting by examining the chart for the second debate against the GOP’s founding chart and Trump’s natal chart. This debate was largely considered an impossible situation for Trump (in the wake of Friday’s revelations), but as many would admit, he did “better” than expected (who knew what to expect?), keeping Hillary Clinton on the defense for large segments of the event. Did he do the GOP any service with his performance last night?
In a grotesque and vicious pre-debate ploy, Trump staged a “press conference” that featured four women who were supposedly there to accuse Bill Clinton of past sexual misconduct. As Greg Sargent, writing for the Washington Post so aptly put it, this ill-conceived “gambit” was designed not to address the feminist issue at the heart of sexual misconduct, but more to humiliate and rattle Trump's opponent—who Trump wants to paint as “guilty” of enabling her husband’s philandering. All things considered, Trump's ploy ended up being an even uglier twist on misogyny than his usual. Sargent feels strongly that Trump did not do the GOP any service with his performance last night.
Republican strategist Steve Schmidt reportedly believes the campaign is all but over, with the only question being how badly the GOP will lose in November. Relevant to our discussion here, he states that Trump’s candidacy reveals the “intellectual rot in the Republican party….” Bottom line, Schmidt doubts that the party will have sufficient integrity left to promote the conservative agenda it claims to represent.
Let’s consider the triwheel:
Triwheel #1: (inner wheel) U.S. Republican Party, March 20, 1854, 12:00 p.m. LMT (noon chart, no exact time known), Ripon, Wisconsin; (middle wheel) Donald J. Trump, June 14, 1946, 10:54 a.m., DST, Jamaica, New York; (outer wheel) 2nd Presidential Debate, October 9, 2016, 9:00 p.m. DST, St. Louis, Missouri.
First, a few sweeping generalizations
This triwheel reads like a study in frustrating, oppositional forces—an exact reflection of how the debate came across on television. We find numerous interchart t-squares and grand crosses, depicting the Jerry Springer-type sparring we witnessed from Trump’s side. Clinton appeared to be trying to go high” when Trump “went low,” (as Michelle Obama counseled), but she took some deeply wounding blows which we'll consider another day.
Interchart Grand Cross: Debate Sun (Libra) conjoins Trump Jupiter (Libra) and opposes Debate Uranus-Eris (Aries, Eris not shown); this axis is squared by Trump’s Saturn-Venus (Cancer) opposed to GOP Chiron-Jupiter (Capricorn). I’ve cast the GOP inception chart for noon because there’s no published time for its founding meeting in 1854. That limits our use of angles and Moon degrees, but there’s certainly enough drama in this triwheel without those details. If noon were the correct time, this grand cross configuration’s intensity would be heightened by its proximity to the GOP Cancer-Capricorn horizon. I’m guessing that an astrologer rectifying this GOP chart might want to consider this dramatic triwheel—the current crisis certainly seems to be an existential threat to the GOP as we know it, so perhaps the timing seen in this chart is not that far off.
As for Trump’s role in this triwheel, his natal Jupiter (Libra) is literally “in the heart” (cazimi) of the Debate Sun, perhaps reflecting his “better-than-expected” performance. His defenses (Cancer Venus-Saturn) were finely tuned and he was laser-focused on (close square to Debate Uranus) destroying his opponent (Debate Sun-Trump Jupiter opposition to Debate Uranus-Eris).
His tactics, however, only further debilitate the GOP’s chances of success (his Cancer planets and Libra Jupiter t-square GOP Jupiter-Chiron) along with his own prospects. Analyst Michael Gerson says Sunday night’s debate was the “worst possible outcome for the GOP” because Trump didn’t even try to appeal to mainstream GOP voters with his talking points. Uranus-Eris has been transiting widely trine his natal Mars-ASC (Leo), unleashing Trump’s combative nature and furthering his oppositional relationship with the Party.
Doubling down rather than courting party support, Trump has taken to lashing out at GOP members and the party in general for their perceived lack of support (Cancer planets opposed GOP Jupiter-Chiron). With Trump’s Saturn-Venus conjunction (Cancer) trine the GOP Sun (Pisces) and his Mars (Leo) exactly inconjunct that Sun, it appears the Party has been railroaded into supporting its own demise.
This fatal attraction is reflected even further by the addition of Debate Pluto (Capricorn) into this grand cross. Indeed, the Debate Moon/Pluto (midpoint, Capricorn) ties in very closely with the GOP’s Jupiter-Chiron and opposing Trump’s Saturn-Venus—it’s no wonder that Trump’s depraved approach to women featured prominently in the past week’s run up to the debate. His cavalier attempt to dismiss the so-called “hot mic” revelations as “locker talk” is already coming back to bite him—and the party.
With Uranus-Eris’s long term transit squaring all these Cancer-Capricorn points, it appears that Trump’s “success” (Jupiter) in disgusting women everywhere will severely wound the party (GOP Jupiter-Chiron). Trump and the party have hitched their fates to each other, but clearly there’s no love lost between them. Trump doesn’t equate his own personal success (i.e., the ego-gratifying glory he cultivates with his most loyal base) with party success and the GOP’s purposes aren’t very well served by Trump’s agenda and followers, either.
Commentators continue to ask whether Trump really wants the presidency, or if he’s simply using the GOP to cultivate a following he can leverage for other purposes after the election. The fraught convergence of oppositional cardinal forces we see in these charts suggest that these commentators may be on to something.
Interchart T-Square: Trump Sun-Node-Uranus (Gemini) oppose Trump Moon (Sagittarius); this axis squares Debate Chiron (Pisces)-GOP Sun/Neptune (midpoint, Pisces). The GOP’s Sun/Neptune midpoint is strongly triggered here by its relationship with Trump, evoking the problems that can arise when a one partner in the relationship lives in an “alternative” or delusionary reality; such relationships are often exploitative, codependent and ultimately destructive. As NYTimes.com columnist Maureen Dowd put it on October 9th:
“In Trump’s alternate universe, he is always the winner. If he’s not, the system is rigged, the mike is faulty, the media is biased. Narcissists can see only themselves in a fun-house mirror, either larger or smaller than they really are at any given moment, so it is impossible for others to convey a true picture to them.”
In fact, the delusions are probably equally shared between the candidate and his beleaguered party in the present instance: despite serious misgivings from the get-go (again, see March 1 posting) GOP members made a calculated decision to support Trump’s nomination early on because they were dazzled by his primary victories and loyal following. Unfortunately, they failed to see that Trump would be unable and probably unwilling to broaden his very limited base.
At a time when the GOP knows (at least theoretically) that it needs to expand its base to meet today’s changing demographics, Trump wants to drag them back into the good ‘ol pre-Civil Rights era. It isn’t going to work because denying reality (a comfortable default for Trump, but not a very sound political strategy for a party) is a dead, delusional end.
Interchart Grand Cross: Debate Neptune-South Node (Pisces) conjoins GOP Neptune and opposes Debate North Node (Virgo); this axis squares Debate Saturn (Sagittarius) and Trump Uranus. Additional points factor into this configuration—especially if we consider progressions—but we’ll consider those as needed to flesh out the story. Clearly, the GOP is caught on the horns of an outer planetary dilemma; for starters, as an organization, they are experiencing their Neptune return in Pisces, which explains the almost hysterical tone of their candidate’s appeal and the blind faith his following continues to have in him.
Neptune has inspired hysteria and a mob mentality throughout history because those who know how to use Neptune’s power tap into a society’s primal depths of insecurity, perceived victimization and existential fears. There’s nothing rational about Neptune—“Make America great again” has little to do with a future plan and everything to do with perceived wrongs and anxieties about changing times. The passive aggression associated with Neptunian idealism (seen in insinuating rhetoric like “People tell me that…”) morphs into overt aggression when the mob takes over.
Of course, used wisely, Neptunian energies are compassionate, uplifting and even euphoric, but there are light and dark sides to every planetary energy, and the GOP (and the country, by extension) has had front row seats for negative Neptune. It’s significant that as the Party of Lincoln, the GOP is also the Party of Neptune, their Venus and late Pisces Sun disposed by Neptune. They were “blessed” by Neptune from the get-go, with Venus exalted in Pisces, disposing their Taurus Pluto, Uranus and Saturn. These roots speak to Lincoln’s determination to end the victimization of slavery—not just for compassionate reasons, but for economic reasons (Taurus) and to build a stronger nation going forward. As we know, that transition challenged the GOP to its core, but they survived and evolved into the party we see in crisis today.
People tend to fear Pluto’s more overt destructive force, but Pluto merely finishes the job Neptune starts. Neptune breaks down existing realities using erosion, disillusionment and overwhelm—we’re seeing all of these with the breakdown of GOP unity, the obfuscation of its traditional core messages and strengths. By allowing their party to be co-opted by divisive extremism, we are seeing the destruction wreaked by both Neptune and Pluto.
Interchart Grand Cross: Debate Jupiter (Libra) conjoins Trump Neptune (Libra) and opposes GOP Mercury (Aries); this axis squares Trump Mercury (Cancer) opposed to Debate Mars (Capricorn). We considered earlier how Trump’s Mercury-Neptune square enables his conspiracy-driven mindset, but here we see why that tendency loomed so large and to such depressing effect in the debate. Debate Mars exactly opposed Trump’s Cancer Mercury from Capricorn, a water-earth sign combination (“mud”) that Trump put to very mean-spirited effect, using language and threats ("you'd be in jail") to lash his opponent with what could have been crippling verbal blows to a weaker target.
Luring Clinton into the muck for a knock-out didn’t prove to be that easy, however. Clinton anticipated Trump’s plans and sought higher ground (when an emotional water sign like Cancer “floods,” flee to the earth sign “hills”). There was stunning irony in Trump’s accusing Clinton of having “hatred in her heart” when he was the one radiating vitriol from every pore. The young Muslim lady who ventured a question to Trump about how he would assure her safety in this country going forward probably understood Clinton’s pain, and the strength it took for her to calmly confront the bully looming over her shoulder.
A word about progressions
On debate #2 night, Saturn fell opposite the GOP’s progressed Saturn (15°+Gemini), the GOP’s progressed Mars (1°+Scorpio) opposed the GOP’s radix Pluto (Taurus) and transiting Pluto fell within orb of the party’s progressed Jupiter (retrograde at 18°+Capricorn). This complex of energies certainly evokes the need for a structural overhaul (Saturn); as for the Mars and Pluto dynamics, they reflect to a tee the brutal “thug” energy Trump has brought into the party’s discourse. As we’ll see ahead, the party’s Uranus (Taurus) also plays a role here.
Bottom line, the party is not likely to thrive until it does the soul-searching a retrograde progressed Jupiter calls for, clearing out the old destructive energies and restoring a productive raison d’ětre (progressed Saturn).
Thankfully, rational Saturn (Sagittarius) has been challenging Neptune’s erosion of the GOP’s democratic principles in favor of a Mars-Uranus-Pluto influenced “strong man” candidate, but challenging Trump with fact-checking and extensive media analyses that would be damning to any other candidate hasn’t been enough to disengage his core following. He simply has a deeper hold on them than anyone could have anticipated.
It’s not too big a mystery how he’s accomplished this: it appears he’s been able to tap into the GOP’s Taurus Uranus (the more radical fringe) with a belligerent square from his 12th house Leo Pluto: he has simply followed his instincts and drawn in these hidden denizens of the GOP (white supremacists, etc.), who are usually ignored and marginalized. Best of all, they’re angry because they don’t feel they’ve “gotten theirs” (Taurus)—strong-man governments never thrive without the energies of an angry, minimally-educated following. Anger and angst become the life force of such movements and the results are always painful.
The transiting nodal axis’s presence during the GOP’s Neptune return perhaps reflects the critical turning point that the party’s has been stumbling over these days. The Debate Pisces South Node here evokes the party’s past, perhaps explaining why they’ve twisted themselves in ideological knots over the years trying to leverage constituencies that are, by nature, at odds. How can any party try to accommodate the super-wealthy and the uneducated white working poor? Throw in the religious conservative cohort and the gun lobby and the mix becomes even less workable. The agendas are bound to clash eventually, and Trump leveraged the dissatisfaction of some groups to the detriment of all the others.
Indeed, his core message hasn’t been entirely off-base—it resonates for valid reasons with many working people. He simply doesn’t know how—or isn’t willing to—broaden his agenda to fit today’s pluralistic democracy and demographics. Instead, he’s continuing to court one, mostly marginalized constituency with his message, ensnaring the party at large in the process. Left to scratch its collective head in disbelief, the party is now reportedly in a state of “civil war”—the RNC falling over its feet to reassure the media it is 100% behind their candidate, while House Leader Paul Ryan issues an “every member for themselves” alert for the sake of Congressional majorities.
On the other end of the axis, the Virgo North Node represents the desirable path forward for the party—a return to a true spirit of public service, perhaps? This node speaks to all politicians, not simply the GOP—public service is often the last thing on their minds, it seems. As for the GOP, this would be impossible without becoming more inclusive, a major challenge they acknowledged from the top levels of the party after Barack Obama’s re-election in 2012.
As with many paths forward, however, the GOP was waylaid and its weaknesses were horribly exploited. Their progressed Jupiter doesn’t turn direct for approximately 16 years, so they may not return to anything resembling the Party of Lincoln for several election cycles. We can hope they at least try.
Whether we have ever agreed with the GOP about anything or not, we have to appreciate their central importance to our 2-Party electoral system. If they continue the unhealthy track they’re on, we will all suffer (witness this horrendous election). As Rep. Greg Walder (R, Ore.) put it, “navigating the election is now like landing an airplane in a hurricane,” and as we see in today’s news, Hurricane Trump has no plans to exit peacefully offshore.
The destruction he’s left in his wake has brought down the promising careers of what Republican consultant Rick Wilson calls “a generation of GOP stars,” adding that “everything Trump touches dies.” Harsh words, but being able to admit the problem is the first step to solving it. If we want to get anything productive done in this nation, we need to wish our GOP friends well.
Raye Robertson is a practicing astrologer, writer and former university English instructor. A graduate of the Faculty of Astrological Studies (U.K.), Raye focuses on mundane, collective-oriented astrology, with a particular interest in current affairs, culture and media, the astrology of generations, and public concerns such as education and health. Several of her articles on these topics have been featured in The Mountain Astrologer and other publications over the years. Raye can be contacted by comment here, or at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
© Raye Robertson 2016. All rights reserved.