Laying Down the Law

As I type these words, Saturn is only three degrees away from Libra. This should provide a refreshing change.

For two and a half years Saturn has been in Virgo, the sign of health and sickness. Although there were other transits that went into making health care reform the 500-pound gorilla that it has become, we can chalk up to Virgo (unconscious Virgo, that is) the obsessive parsing that has surrounded this charade of a debate. With Saturn moving into an air sign, I am looking forward to a fresh breeze of reason and rationality to waft into the American conversation.

The ingress into Libra on October 29th will also change the tenor of the ongoing Saturn-Uranus opposition. It will shift old tensions and introduce new ones. Don’t expect the polarization to end any time soon; we’re in the Cardinal Cross years, which are all about radical new ideas challenging failed old policies. Tug-o’-wars are the order of the day. But issues will now take a Libran turn. Expect marriage equality to regain center stage. There will be a renewed emphasis on justice and law.

The USA has natal Saturn in Libra, and it is coming into its collective Saturn Return, peaking in 2011. The premises upon which this democracy is based, which most Americans vaguely consider to be eternal and flawless, will be critiqued with a harsh new scrutiny.

In America’s chart, Saturn falls in the tenth house; the one associated with the workings of government. Time to pull out the old textbooks: we’re going back to civics class.

You may have heard about the problems we’re having here in California; not just financially but in the more inscrutable arena of legislative mechanics. Under the current system, which makes no sense but is all technically legal, a few sparsely populated areas are holding the state hostage. Thanks to decades of gerrymandering and other contrivances, we’ve got a situation where great swaths of cultural wasteland, inhabited by a smattering of rural reactionaries and the odd libertarian, are determining policies that fly in the face of the intent of the vast majority of the citizenry.

On the national level, we find the same skewed situation, exemplified by the health care debate. A tiny number of loud, ill-informed extremists are wielding wildly disproportionate amounts of political power; and the media is presenting it as a healthy give-and-take between equal sides. Somewhere between the Founding Fathers and the sprawling morass that this country has become, serious problems have developed in the relationship between elected officials and demographics.

In the House of Representatives, the public option would be a shoe-in right now. Polls show people want it, and, theoretically, in a democracy the majority is supposed to have a certain degree of clout. But in the Senate the fate of reform may well be determined by the caprices of a few coy fence-straddlers like Max Baucus from Montana and Olympia Snowe from Maine (you just know these two love all the sudden attention), who hail from states that have – not to put too fine a point on it — hardly any residents.

Given the timing of Saturn going into Libra, whose purpose is to re-balance skewed situations, it may be health care reform that brings these legislative loopholes to national attention.

Such flaws in the USA’s putatively representative government are illogical, counter-intuitive and corruption-prone; but few Americans seem particularly concerned about them. The red-white-and-blue crowd doesn’t want to think their government needs deep-structure overhaul. It is easier to hurl invectives at this or that politician, and to tell themselves that by replacing him with somebody else, everything will be just fine.

It is no secret that the US public expresses little curiosity, by and large, about how laws are passed. For that matter, Americans are notorious for staying home on election day; apparently even our gubernatorial candidates don’t vote. And of course right now all this ignorance and apathy are exacerbated by the fact that a sizable chunk of the population doesn’t know where their next paycheck is coming from, inducing a state of stress that makes them sitting ducks for the fear-mongering manipulations of commercial interests and Fox News hysterics. In a recent interview, Gore Vidal pulled no punches: “[Americans are] the worst-educated people in the First World. They don’t have any thoughts, they have emotional responses, which good advertisers know how to provoke.” (Okay, he’s cranky. But to my mind the old dude has earned every crumb of crank in his crank box.)

With Saturn now in Libra, smack dab on the midheaven of the US chart, the discrepancies between America’s self-image as a democracy and its actual political behavior will start to become embarrassingly obvious.

Preening patriots, get ready for your close-up.


After pondering over the political model offered on, I found it completely flawed, because among a number of irregularities, the main fault is that they never defined the center. The Center is the starting point, and if that is wrong, everything else that follows will automatically be off and the whole picture becomes diffused and unclear.The interesting conclusion that I reached is that a Democracy is like a wild card. You can´t put it in any fixed place. A democracy can be anything, .... if the majority chooses a Bush or a Hitler ......... or an Obama...... Society, they say, is usually ruled by the lowest level of judgment, a democracy shows you exactly what that is. We are all servants of the Law in order that we may be free. - CiceroThere are spiritual Laws, there are physics Laws, there are traffic Laws, there are dietary Laws (or used to be), there is the Rule of Law (or used to be) ...... among many, many others.Nowadays people tend to think, things are a matter of sentiment, or of opinion. Some say " what really matters is, of course, a matter of opinion", I would say it is a matter of Law. Can´t pass that red traffic light as "a matter of opinion".The Aquarian Age to me is all about rediscovering Freedom through understanding Universal Laws. Politically it can´t be found if you don´t know what the Center is, and a democracy is like playing the Russian roulette."Right interpretation of the necessity for limitation in any form of manifested existence is the secret of dominion. Wrong interpretation of the same thing is the cause of our slavery to conditions. The clue to the right understanding is the aphorism,He who would rule Nature must first obey her laws”.- Arhat Paul Foster Case

Jessica Murray
Jessica Murray

Dear AstroPleth,Thanks for your interesting points.Totally agree about the state/fed power reconfiguration. Next year's multi-planet Grand Crosses, with Saturn again in Virgo, will be huge. r.e. Calif's chart and key transits: Astrologer Ted Denmark's in-depth essay is a must-read. Please contact him at


Another stimulating and well-written post, Jessica. Thank you. Re: health care reform, it’s such a big issue, with so much money and jobs involved that it’s proper to take more time about it (and hold the senatorial sellouts up to ridicule). As for rejiggering “skewed situations,” part of the Saturn return process, I think, is another round of reconfiguring federal vs. state power. To my mind, this is a major aspect of Obama’s first term, which began in the midst of a north node solar eclipse on the USA south node in Aquarius: a new unum/pluribus relationship beginning to take shape.I’ve read more than a bit about California’s paralysis, but I don’t have the astro correspondences for how the state (recently referred to as America’s first “failed state”) got into such a mess. Could you post something about the key stages -- the ballot initiatives, etc.?Here in Minnesota, it’s also a bad budget situation, partly because our ever-coy boy “governor” has spent his two terms after three-way races running for US Senator and President. Meanwhile, bridges fall down or are closed, cities have to lay off workers and let the potholes become craters, mental patients get thrown on the street -- little things like that keep happening, as Neptune and Chiron square the hefty Taurus-Scorpio axis in the state’s chart.I think you’re quite right: the shift of Saturn into Libra is a big one, but remember, we’re not finished with Virgo. And again re: health care reform, check out the sky for the Saturn station next May 30. It’s quite dramatic, especially when compared to the USA Sibley chart. (I touch on the Saturn in Libra significance --shameless plug here -- in the latest post on my own blog )