Neptune is just starting to go backwards (Retrograde) after 7 months of moving forward (Direct). Just now he’s effectively standing still (Stationing) for a while, so it’ll be a week or two before we can really say he’s retrograde. When I do readings for people, I don’t normally even look to see what natal planets are retrograde, as there’s usually too much else to talk about in the time available. I can imagine, however, that if someone had a specific question about their life that I needed to spend time on, I might well look at retrograde. But I’ve never been ‘wowed’ by it like you can be when you see other bits of the chart working accurately. I’ve got 4 retro planets – Venus and the 3 outers – so if anyone wants to see if they can convince me about retrograde through my chart, please feel free! (See profile for chart info). Or if you want me to have a go at yours, just let me know.
When I’m following political events through the outer planets, or through transits in people’s lives, I can definitely see phase changes as the planets move from retrograde to direct and back again. I’ve been saying for years to people with Pluto transits to just hang on till late Aug/early Sept, when Pluto changes from Retro to Direct. Because Retro seems to be about going over old ground (which the planet is literally doing) so that old stuff can be moved on. So Retro can be a difficult, but necessary time.
The 2 political theatres I have been visiting to watch the Neptune show are the Bush/Iraq theatre and the Blair Leadership theatre. The last time that Neptune went retro was from May 2006 to October 2006. In both cases a bubble was burst that needed to burst.
With Blair, he had said he would be going some time during this term of office, but he wouldn’t give any indication when, and it was causing a lot of disgruntlement and uncertainty. As Neptune began to go Retro, Labour did badly at the local elections, and the pressure on Blair to announce a resignation date intensified. In Sept, towards the end of Neptune’s retro, Blair was finally pushed into announcing that he would be gone sometime in the next year.
With Bush and Iraq, Neptune Retro was a period in which it was widely accepted that Iraq was a basket case (technical term) by everyone but the US government, and as we got to August/Sept, the admissions started coming out that all was not well, forced on them by the upcoming mid-term elections.
So in both cases a situation was brought down to earth. What might the upcoming retro period bring?
In the case of the Blair Leadership saga, we know he is going on 27 June, there appears to be nothing left to sort there. But there is the matter of Gordon Brown, our Prime Minister in waiting, and to my mind there is clearly a bubble that needs bursting here. I want to give the man a chance, and at the moment he’s trying to convince the country that he’ll be a good PM, but you can’t ignore what everyone says about him: that he’s a good chancellor, but a control freak who will brook no opposition and can’t get on with people. The other day Tony Blair was publicly commending Gordon Brown as an excellent man to be PM, but even Tony Blair the great actor couldn’t bring himself to be fluent and fulsome. You could see he was trying, but he kept halting, and then dragging a few more words of praise out of his mouth. Tony Blair isn’t vindictive, so I think it was genuine. It really stuck in his throat to have to say things he didn’t believe. And Tony Blair of all people is very good at convincing himself to believe in things – like in Saddam Hussein’s Weapons of Mass Destruction. So I think that this period of Neptune Retro could well be about bursting what bubble there is around Brown, and the result may not be one he wants. But I think that what people say about him is probably true, and he may not have a very long honeymoon as PM: the New Labour in Power solar return suggests he won’t.
As for Bush and Iraq, there is still clearly a big bubble going on. Yes, it has been accepted by the administration that all is not as it might be in Iraq, but that still constitutes a big level of illusion, that has had enough power to force the Democrats into funding the war without conditions around a date for troop withdrawal. So I predict that between now and October, Neptune retro will force further admissions from the the Bush administration about the situation in Iraq. Like with Brown, it’s not something we don’t all know anyway.
George Bush has natal Venus at 21.29 Leo, and it is this planet, to do with popularity in a politician, that has been impacted by Neptune (and Saturn). This suggests that it is loss of popularity that has been getting him to change strategy (rather than, say, any real insight into his predicament), and we can certainly see this in the case of the mid-term elections last November, which were all about the unpopularity of his Iraq strategy. Bush isn’t directly threatened any more by unpopularity in the country, as he has no more elections to win or lose, but he is threatened by too much unpopularity within his own congressional party. Both Neptune and Saturn are going to cross his Venus in the next couple of months, and the success/failure of his ‘surge’ is also going to be becoming apparent.
So Neptune Retro for Bush may be about losing the support of significant elements in his own party (and moderate Republicans are already starting to let their dissatisfaction with him be publicly known). This would be disastrous for him, because the Democrats could no longer be held solely accountable for losing the war if funding is withdrawn.
Over the last few years I have heard several people say that they felt Bush’s Presidency was going to end in some sort of disaster for him personally, though they couldn’t say what. It could be this relentless action of Neptune on his Venus that brings it about, destroying his popularity and support, and forcing a reckoning over Iraq BEFORE his Presidency is over (which I think many people pray for).