“Rarely in modern times have we witnessed such a display of petulance and bad judgment by those supposed to be in charge of global financial stability, and by those who set the tone for the Western world.
The spectacle is astonishing. The European Central Bank, the EMU bail-out fund, and the International Monetary Fund, among others, are lashing out in fury against an elected government that refuses to do what it is told. They entirely duck their own responsibility for five years of policy blunders that have led to this impasse.” — Ambrose Evans-Pritchard writing in The Daily Telegraph (To read the rest of the article, click here.)
In 2008, the planet of both superwealth and transformation, Pluto, moved into the sign of hierarchy and power, Capricorn. The instant impact was the banking crisis, which brought the world economy to the edge of a precipice and resulted in taxpayers bailing out banks all over the “developed” world. As we are all too well aware, the architects of the system that failed have not paid any price, they are still swanning around from meeting to meeting.
The only might that fell was Dominique Strauss-Kahn, ex-head of the IMF, and that was not brought about by financial misbehaviour but sexual incontinence.
More astonishing perhaps is the fact that the system itself has not been overhauled. Indeed, we’re even deeper in debt than before.
This week in Europe we are watching another act in the economic drama directed by a tiny elite of decision-makers in Washington, Brussels and Disneyland in which we all, reluctantly, have walk on roles. Greece, massively in debt, is trying to negotiate a way out of its situation with a “troika” of creditors: the European Central Bank, the IMF and the European Commission.
Since Greece shares a common currency, the euro, with the bulk of the European Union, the situation is fraught with even more difficulties than the usual bankrupting of a state. Years ago, when Greece joined the euro, the then-government finessed the national audit (with connivance from Goldman Sachs) so that things looked far more stable than they really were. However, this sleight of hand was barely concealed: it was politically expedient for the European Union to get Greece on board the euro-project, and so it was done — by hook or by crook.
This is the chart for the currency. You can see that Saturn is sitting right on the Euro’s Achilles heel (Chiron at 29° Scorpio) — corruption methinks, Scorpio being the land of backhanders. Corruption was never eradicated as a priority while they euro was being set up. Greece is by no means the only eurozone country that’s been run by bunch of money-grubbing bureaucrats.
One of the first moves by freshly-elected government of Alexis Tsipras (click here to see Tsipras‘ chart) was to vow to stamp out corruption and tax evasion. Strangely, this was not greeted with the enthusiasm by the troika one might have expected.
And in reciprocation to natal Chiron, by transit Chiron, the wounder, is hitting the Euro’s powerful Jupiter in Pisces. When Jupiter is in Pisces, he’s in his own domain, therefore strong and hard to control. Although this is often a placement of great compassion in an individual’s chart, it’s also irrational and emotional. How this works for a currency is open to speculation… pun intended.
Meanwhile, the Sun and Mars by transit have been heating up that Gemini Moon to boiling point — and indeed we’ve seen talks and talks about talks and talks about negotiations and talks about conversations and conversations about negotiations. Gemini Moon likes to talk (a lot), but talking can take the place of action, especially with the Mars in Libra. Transiting Mercury in Gemini has just been zinging around.
Greece was given until June 30 to repay an impossibly big pile of cash to its creditors. Today, there’s talk that the possibility of more talks will delay this. The Wise Ones who run the troika seem incapable of actually making a plan.
“Part of the sub-optimal political and economic compromise that is the eurozone, is that it can’t chew gum and walk at the same time. Greece needs to wake up to this inescapable if disappointing reality.” — Robert Peston, BBC economics correspondent
The fact is Greece’s debt is too huge to ever pay off. It’s around €240 billion. The population is 11 million. You can do the maths. Why anyone is pretending this can ever be paid off is part of the Jupiter (Falstaff) in Leo (theatre) playacting that’s going on. It’s also noteworthy that one of the key players, Yanis Varoufakis, is an expert in games theory. Games belong to Leo, and gambling belongs to Jupiter. To see his chart click here.
Meanwhile, I guess we’d all love to look a the expense accounts for those eurocrats, IMFniks and pols jetting from Brussels to Athens to Vilnius and back for more discussions.
Transiting Jupiter, at his most generous and benevolent in Leo, can be also autocratic and domineering. On July 1, Venus and Jupiter will conjunuct between 21°and 22° Leo, on the Euro’s North Node. This suggests that a great act of generosity could change the direction of the Euro, but equally that overweening pride (Leo’s great flaw) or overextension could do the same.
Jupiter trines Uranus, the planet of breakthroughs and rebels, this week. We shall see, but that may favour Greece and an end to the five-month deadlock.
Yanis Varoufakis’ Uranus 22° Leo
Christine Lagarde’s Pallas-MC 20° Leo, Mercury 25° Leo
Angela Merkel’s Pluto 23° Leo
Alexis Tsipras’ IC 21° Leo
In the longer term, the currency’s troubles are not over by any means. Pluto has yet to hit the chart ruler, Venus in Capricorn, and Uranus has yet to hit the natal Saturn in the house of partnerships.
The head of the IMF Christine Lagarde has not covered herself with glory during these negotiations. To see her chart — she shares a birthday with the Euro — click here. Her Leo Moon will be quite puffed up by all this limelight but it remains to be seen whether queenly generosity or pomposity will prevail.
But in the long run, there is a systemic problem with the Euro and the result is that the currency is undermining democracy, as Adittya Charabortty ably explains in today’s Guardian. Furthermore, it is not enriching the citizens of the EU. In fact, it is impoverishing some and corrupting others.
Money is a dangerous thing. It lures you in and eats you up. It’s addictive, corrupting, like white sugar corroding the lining of your stomach or the enamel on your teeth. Venus, the planet of money (and sugar), is said to be in detriment in Scorpio, the sign of other people’s money and secret hordes. To take care of money, we need strong laws, not strong lawyers. We need transparency, not meetings behind closed doors. One of the greatest weapons of the masters of the eurozone is their whispering campaigns. From the chart, you can see just how much goes on behind closed doors — look at all those planets in Scorpio in the 4th house in the chart for the European Union.
For the past few years, Saturn has been testing the foundations of the European Union, in particular the challenging relationship between the people (Moon in Taurus) and the plutocrats (Pluto-Mars in Scorpio).
You have only to look at the difference between the chart for the EU (1993) and the chart for the original EEC (1958) to see how far things have slipped from the original ideal of the a European community living in peace and healing the wounds of WW2 through cultural and commercial exchange. There has been a serious consolidation of power in the hands of the hidden, unelected few. It’s almost as if the mandarins did a coup d’etat in 1993. Too much Scorpio for good governance, too much 4th house.
Note how the EEC chart (1958) has NN at 8° Scorpio, and the EU chart has Sun at 8° Scorpio. One organisation evolved into the next.
“This isn’t about creating a deeper democracy, but deeper markets – and the two are increasingly incompatible.” — Adittya Chakrabortty in The Guardian. (To read this article, click here.)
We might get a more generous and adventurous community if the next treaty could bring about at 3° Sagittarius Sun for the Union to coincide with the EU NN in Sag. This point has already received a direct hit from Saturn at the end of January (the day Syriza won the Greek election) and the start of May (the Greek talkathon across Europe to try and win a reprieve). Saturn will be back in the last week of October to finish the job.
If you want to find out exactly what Greece actually proposed, read Greek fin min Yanis Varoufakis’ blog here.