Mercury Rx Uncorked

Republican Senator Bob Corker (Tennessee) is accused of being bribed with a new tax break in exchange for his yes vote on tax reform.

There is a world of difference between voting no on a tax reform plan that would “deepen the debt burden on future generations” and agreeing to vote yes on it because it represents “a once-in-a-generation opportunity to make US businesses domestically more productive and internationally more competitive.” Those are Republican Senator Bob Corker’s words, and coming in a span of two weeks it is a massive Mercury retrograde flip-flop. What gives?

Mercury Retrograde & Tax Reform

As read two and a half months ago the current retrograde cycle which started conjunct Saturn is having a big impact on US politics. The key issue appears to be a Republican deal on tax reform. An original plan was approved on December 2, the day before Mercury turned retrograde. They want to drop the corporate tax rate “to remain competitive” globally and “bring jobs back” but these are sales pitches. The jobs won’t be returning. Rather as people like former Labor Secretary Robert Reich allude to tax reform is just a giant Christmas gift for the already wealthy corporate executive class, who will use the tax breaks to boost stock prices and give themselves bigger bonuses. That’s all it is. A $1.5T, ten year taxpayer giveaway.

Doug Jones became the first Democrat to win a Senate seat in Alabama in 25 years.

In order to provide this giant gift President Trump has gone to extreme lengths, arguing again and again that he needs the votes or that the votes will be there. On December 12 in the heart of the retrograde for example, he publicly backed Alabama Republican Senate candidate and former state judge Roy Moore despite him having multiple accusations of sexually assaulting teenagers when he was in his 30’s. Moore also had ties to white supremacists and earlier praised slavery-era America. Trump must have been out of his mind, but he desperately needs the votes to appease his financial controllers. Instead they lost big, dropping a Senate seat and a vote in the process. And now there’s Corker. What next?

Other Political Impacts

The retrograde has brought continual political problems since its start. Legal challenges are planned as a result of Trump’s evisceration of two national monuments in Utah for industrial use on December 4. Long-term consequences and grievances have been created as a result of Trump’s declaration of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel December 6. It was a typical Mercury retrograde delay on December 7 when Congress passed a two-week spending bill to avert the last deadline and keep government funded. The tax deal for the corporate donor class was obviously a higher priority. Another huge retrograde whoops occurred when a Trump judicial nominee couldn’t answer basic legal questions December 13, and the next day US internet neutrality was killed by the Federal Communications Commission. Epic Mercury retrograde/Saturn. Multiple lawsuits there are also said to be coming.

Travel Problems Also Occur

Travel-wise Mercury retrograde has again proven problematic. A lengthy total power outage at the world’s busiest airport in Atlanta, Georgia caused over 1,000 flight cancellations December 17. Delta airlines scrapped another 400 flights the next day. Sagittarius and airports… Tragically, in another event an Amtrak train hurtled off an overpass near Seattle December 18 killing three and injuring many more. The train was making its inaugural run on a faster new route.

Mercury will go direct in North America late in the day December 22. In addition to the tax vote US Congress also has to pass a budget or the government could shutdown December 23. Problems seem likely to continue with the direct station square Neptune, the planet of confusion and deceit. With Neptune involved keep your mental load light and creative until mid-January.


Mars 2018 Forecast: Have No Fear

While Saturn and Uranus may steal all the attention next year, Mars shouldn’t be discounted. On the positive side Mars can spur great progress. Negatively though it is associated with fear, aggression, violence. Mismanaged, Mars can have unfortunate consequences. An examination of Mars’s activity in 2018 shows a powerful year ahead for the red planet.

A Good Start

Placement-wise Mars starts out 2018 in Scorpio where it is strong and capable. Combined with Jupiter expect lots more dirt to be dug up. Greater exposure on many levels seems indicated. With no obvious stress aspects it looks a favorable time to get to the bottom of things and elevate passion. Mars then shifts to Sagittarius for February and March. It will face off against a multitude of Pisces planets where sensitivities may be offended and moral crises develop.

A Heated Spring

Mars squares the Solar Aries Ingress March 20, 2018.

Mars then spends most of the rest of the year in Capricorn and Aquarius. This is important because both signs are pivotal in world affairs. Capricorn rules business and politics; Aquarius groups and stock markets. The shift happens March 18. In Capricorn Mars is determined. Joining Pluto and Saturn the time looks ripe for high-level power plays. “Get it done at any cost” seems to be the Capricorn message.

The Solar Aries ingress March 20 is also tightly square Mars. In theory this suggests Mars themes will be the major focus of energies through Spring. Combined with the square of several other Aries planets including Mercury retrograde to Saturn and Pluto, it’s quite possible a military confrontation will occur. May could be a firecracker with Mars square Uranus the whole month and both planets changing signs.

Potent Retrograde

The Lunar Eclipse in Aquarius on July 27, 2018 is conjunct Mars retrograde.

The Mars retrograde cycle mainly in revolutionary Aquarius is a key factor for 2018. The dates are June 26 – August 27. At this time conflicts and differences should be addressed with diplomacy and negotiation or frustrations and hostilities may boil over with harmful outcomes. Financial markets may also be affected and enter an unstable period.

Importantly, three eclipses occur during the middle of the retrograde and Mars also makes another long square to Uranus – from mid-July to the end of September. These energies ensure the retrograde and direct station take place within a backdrop of high energy and tension. The Lunar South Node is conjunct or proximal Mars in all three eclipses. The time favors breakdown or reform of past, outworn systems.

Wrap Up

Mars stays in Aquarius until just after the US mid-term elections. It is square Jupiter in Scorpio/Sagittarius through November. This could suggest key political displacements there. Mars finishes 2018 in Pisces. It’s important to understand that this type of Mars year could easily turn into a fear festival for some world leaders and the elite. If so it’s a great opportunity to clear old world consciousness. The remedy is to get to and maintain an exalted state of pure peace and love in your heart. Chiron’s first glimpse of Aries in April may help.