A Uranus-Pluto square is like overstretching a rubber band to the point that it snaps back violently—and draws blood when it does. It's about taking things way too far (Pluto) until there's a violent reaction (Uranus).
Albert Einstein once said, "The significant problems we face can not be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them." This is a primary theme as the U.S. begins its Pluto return, which culminates with a square to a Uranus-Eris conjunction at Chiron circa 2016. As such, below is the U.S. natal chart (known as the Sibley chart) utilizing the full solar system, which points to America's core issues—and hints at their resolution. (More of those specifics will be covered in a future post entitled, "Look Out America! Eris is Coming!" rather than here and now.)
First and most obvious is the Cancer stellium of Sun-Mercury-Jupiter and Venus (modern astrology ignores the Part of Fortune because it's a derivative calculation and doesn't actually exist). Unquestionably, Cancer takes care of its own. Cancer is personal and not humanitarian or universal like Aquarius—Cancer is generosity with a catch (allegiance and fealty). It is an utterly provincial and self-interested provider, and not concerned about nurturing the good of the whole. This is underscored by the ASC and first house.
With Sadge rising and Eris in Capricorn in the first house, under the guise and intent of good-old Sadge abundance, benevolence, altruism and generosity, America WANTS to meddle in others affairs (Eris) and take control (Capricorn) to its own advantage in the situation, whether it's Central and South American economic policy or geopolitics in the Middle East. With America, it's not about generating cooperative, win-win situations. It's about power and control (Capricorn) over everyone else. And there's VERY deep-seated needs and reasons (primarily economic) for that lust for power and control with Haumea and Makemake lurking in the Scorpio-ruled 12th house, with Pluto in the 2nd house. These reasons will be revisited when Saturn ingresses into Scorpio and mutually recepts Pluto beginning in late 2012.
Astrologer Bill Herbst, in his January commentary, "Adulthood, Maturity, & Wisdom", intelligently probes pieces of the core issues of the Uranus in Aries-Pluto in Capricorn square, underscored by the U.S.' Pluto return with transiting Pluto currently partile conjunct America's natal Eris:
"So, to put the exclamation mark on this section of the commentary, whathappened is that wisdom fled the corridors of power in America, which are nowfilled with reprehensible scoundrels who are so habituated to lying, cheating, andstealing that they know no other way to be. As to where wisdom went, I wouldsuggest that it spread out and now resides invisibly among the mass of ordinaryAmericans, where millions of relatively wise people coexist right alongside tens ofmillions of others who don’t have a clue but are about to be rudely awakened.This is, I think, very much like the ancient parable of the Sufi Master who lives inthe village, quietly plying his mundane trade as a blacksmith. He reveals hisMastery (i.e., his wisdom) only to those who can recognize it. To everyone else,he remains just the village blacksmith. He doesn’t become a rich businessmanwho then runs for Mayor, for that path is the very opposite of what his wisdomteaches and how he needed to live to earn the wisdom in the first place."
Herbst is essentially accurate: A man of wisdom is not going to seek power, politics, and business. Why? Socrates gave a pretty good hint more than two millenia ago when he said, "A man who really fights for justice must lead a private, not public, life if he is to survive for even a short time." (Apology, p. 36) But the Eastern mystic Osho is much more specific:
"Man is continuously trying in every possible way to be somebody higher, special, superior – but this is all politics...And the people who get interested in politics are the most mediocre. Politics needs no other qualifications except one – that is, a deep feeling of inferiority. The intelligent people have something more important to do. Intelligence cannot waste itself in struggling with third class, ugly politics, dirty politics. Only the third class people become presidents, prime ministers. An intelligent person is not going to be distracted by such a desert which leads nowhere, not even to an oasis."
"What is politics basically? The desire to dominate others -- and that is the most stupid thing in life. The intelligent person tries to be a master of himself, and the stupid person tries to be master of others. And how can you be a master of others if you are not a master of yourself? If you are not a master of yourself, then trying to be a master of others is just a substitute to befool yourself, to deceive yourself, and that is what the stupidity consists of."
So the abject failure of political leadership is a given, but what about the responsibility of the citizens? As Herbst notes:
"...[Russian writer Dmitri] Orlov holds that Americans are the least-prepared of any nation for the changes looming in the years ahead. We are, he says, alienated from each other and from community itself, politically uninformed and neutered, chronically habituated to our conveniences, hypnotized by the bread-and-circuses media that’s controlled by our corporate masters, and deeply dependent on the state for support of basic needs—more so than the populations of any other major society on earth."
You can't expect excellence from a society conditioned in obedience and survival and consumption. The out-of-control rat race is designed to keep people as far from self-awareness and self-sufficiency as possible.
So the core Pluto problems essentially look like this:
1) We can't expect people in power/politics to get us out of the mess, because their very qualities are what got us into this mess and keeps us there. (Astrologically, the vested interests of Pluto in Capricorn's plutocracy.)
2) Americans are too stupid, lazy and ignorant to do much about the mess they are in because that stupidity, laziness and ignorance are what got them into the mess in the first place. So they blame the politicians.
Notice a vicious-circle pattern here? Not only that, but the two problems are deeply connected. Resolve one and you resolve the other. Like I alluded in the opening paragraph, you can't solve problems with the same ideas and systems that created those problems. You have to do something new and different to get a different result.
Enter Uranus in Aries. (Literally.)
When an outer planet ingresses into a new sign and lingers in the early degrees, it tends toward its "shadow" or dark side until it gets established. Uranus at the early degrees of Aries has to move past the current right-wing, libertarian, shadow mentality of every-man-for-himself, and shift into the higher vibe of individuals taking action for the greater good. The shift occurs via the seven partile squares to Pluto, directly impacting the Cancer stellium via T-square, which will force that Uranian mental shift to occur via the resulting damage and destruction. Then, as Uranus separates and heads for the later degrees of Aries, Round Two occurs when transiting Uranus conjoins transiting Eris at the U.S. natal Chiron to square the U.S. natal Pluto in the second decanant of Aries at 23 degrees.
In other words, people will still be reeling from the first wave of tumult and trouble, when the upheaval and damage shifts to a completely different front as the momentum swings toward the citizenry and their response to the first wave. So if Round One begins as an international incident (ruler of the 9th forming a T-square with Uranus-Pluto), Round Two pulls the focus back to the home front later on with the Uranus-Eris-Chiron emphasis in the fourth house. (Again, more on this to come in future posts.)
So one of the first (and hopelessly obvious) solutions is to stop looking for a political savior (Pluto in Cap) to lead the country to the promised land while its populace remains sleepwalking. The second is for that sleepwalking populace to finally get over those Pluto in Sadge halcyon days of believing and hoping their way through life by denying reality, the fallout of which is prevalent now in the early decanant of Pluto in Capricorn.
So what to do when the intelligent, aware few are up against the clueless, sleeping mob, while the Plutocrats exploit them both? MIT professor and activist Noam Chomsky, when asked in "Imperial Ambitions" what an individual can do about the enormous problems we face, offers a hint:
"There's a lot we can do. We're not going to be thrown into prison and face torture. We're not going to be assassinated. We have enormous privilege and tremendous freedom. That means endless opportunities. After every talk I give in the United States, people come up and say, "I want to change things. What can I do?" I never hear these questions from peasants in southern Colombia, Kurds in southeastern Turkey under miserable repression, or anybody who is suffering. They don't ask what they can do; they tell you what they're doing."
"The real question people have, I think, is 'What can I do to bring about an end to these problems that will be quick and easy? I went to a demonstration and nothing changed. Fifteen million people marched in the streets on 2/15/2003, and still Bush went to war; it's hopeless.'
But that's not the way things work...Unless you develop an ongoing, living, democratic culture that can compel the candidates, they're not going to do the things you voted for. Pushing a button and then going home is not going to change anything."
And that's where individual rebels taking a stand to create that democratic culture, whether at home or in the workplace, move front and center. First, however, understand the difference between a rebel (Uranus) and a revolutionary (Pluto). Rebellion is constructive, creative, individual and specific. It fights for something, rather than just against something. It creates to replace, rather than destroys for the sake of destruction. It is not a cultural or ideological mass movement like a revolution (i.e., communism). With Uranus in Aries, pockets of rebellion are the tool to demolish the Pluto in Capricorn entrenched, structural corruption and rot. Rebellion changes everything from the bottom up—from individuals, to society, and eventually to leadership. Revolution is messy, tyrannical and changes nothing but the names on the letterhead.
When most people see an injustice, they won't stick their neck out by speaking up or taking action—they either go into denial, or they wait for someone else to assume the risk, and if things look like they are going the right way, say "me too." This became very apparent during the #OWS movement's beginning, where the sparks of a few rebels, who were essentially ignored and even mocked early on, ended up igniting national interest, and subsequently generated individual groups in many cities within that nationwide zeitgeist. (Transiting 10th house Haumea in Libra conjunct Sibley Saturn and trining Sibley Mars.)
So how does all of this play out in reality? What does it look like on the ground? It's as Chomsky alludes. The 60's era mass protests don't work, and smashing windows at Chase bank is not going to make its CEO, Jamie Dimon, lose sleep. Individual groups take up issues via rebellion in unconnected, uncoordinated uprisings (often simultaneously) across the country, catching the Plutocrats completely by surprise and unable to respond effectively with their militarized police forces to a multi-headed, simultaneous, unscheduled, unknown menace. Pluto in Capricorn's Big Brother can't be everywhere at once, while Uranus in Aries can.
But most importantly, the cold, hard reality is that people have to grow and evolve their own consciousness before they can even begin to address changing society. And throughout American history, crises have always been the catalyst for change, not collective enlightenment. (Hinted at by the intercepted Aquarian Moon in the 3rd house in late degrees.)
But people aren't there yet. Awakening takes time, and it's often in fits and starts.
Uranus in Aries, the symbol of a quantum leap forward if there ever was one, demands tremendous courage from the individuals demanding change in the face of the hostile, entrenched defenders of the status quo. With Uranus and Pluto, violence will be involved—it's a given in situations involving such drastic change as replacing a completely corrupt and rotten economic and political system with something new, fair and equitable.
As Pogo once said, we've met the enemy and it is us (Pluto in the 2nd as ruler of the 12th in the Sibley chart), but we've also met the solution—and with Uranus in Aries with Chiron in the Sibley 4th house, again, it is us. The problems are far from unsolvable, and the solutions are already there—what's missing is the public force and will to implement them. Americans have got a job to do, and thanks to Neptune in rulership in Pisces in the Sibley 3rd moving up to trine the Jupiter-Venus conjunction, the inspiration and specific ideas of how will show up, front-and-center, right as it's needed. Count on it.
(For further astrological insight on Pluto in Capricorn for America, see also: "The Capricorn Conspiracy" by Michael Lutin. http://bit.ly/xLmUnA).