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New York, Friday, March 02, 2007

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The Gingerbread House

The construction of your gingerbread house will closely follow the building concepts of a real house. Proper planning is essential. You can make the gingerbread ahead of time, making sure to let it thoroughly cool in a dry area before wrapping securely to store. Be sure to allow plenty of time to put the pieces together.

The Gingerbread House
I WAS having dinner with a reader in Manhattan earlier in the week, and she asked me, somewhat jokingly, what my catchall interpretation of the Saturn-Neptune opposition (which was exact Wednesday) was.

"Dick Cheney did Sept. 11," I said, without even thinking. Okay, that's not entirely true. I've actually thought about it a lot, but I wasn't expecting to say that.

The discussion keeps coming up lately, too, even during lunch with my mom this week, who has since then spent a good bit of time on the Planet Waves Sept. 11 resource area, by her own account, astonished -- something which has incidentally been shaping my worldview in not so subtle ways. What one's mom thinks about the world is sometimes a dependable barometer, if for no other reason than comparison.

You may be wondering how it is that I know for sure that Dick Cheney did Sept. 11, besides some graffiti and an astrological chart that said as much the first day, that chart being an orgy of collusion, illusion and manipulation; a political media masquerade ball wherein Osama bin Laden comes dressed in a flight suit wearing a pacemaker with a "Mission Accomplished" banner behind him, and old Uncle Dick walks around the cold Afghani hills, smiling calmly, dressed in a turban and white robes, steadying himself with a long wooden staff.

But before I get into that and why it matters, however, I must share with you the Parable of the Gingerbread House. This parable is from my investigative reporting files. In my fantasy world, everyone would be trained as an investigative reporter and spend some time covering the government. Here is a small investment in that coming true.

There are people who can make beautifully realistic gingerbread houses. These take a lot of patient craftwork, and in some families where there is a tradition, the use of skills learned over several generations. You can set the finished house amidst a few plants, and in the right light photograph it so that it looks like a piece of prime real estate, so cozy you could shrink yourself, crawl in, make a fire and have a lovely weekend in the woods. But the whole thing is edible. It's not really a house. It just looks like one.

If you want to prove this, you could eat the whole thing. Or, you could taste part of it. For example, you could eat the chimney, which is made of thin, brittle cake. You could nibble one of the shingles, which is made of candy. You could scrape off some of the snow, which is frosting. It does not really matter where you begin. You can taste any part of the house and discover that it's confectionary. After tasting a few pieces, you could use inductive logic and predict that the whole house is candy and cake. Or, if you're less certain, you could eat it all.

So it is with a good news story. Once you have a real one, it doesn't really matter where you take your first nibble. Wherever you snap off a piece and taste it, you'll find out the same thing; it's gingerbread or candy, and it tastes more or less the same. The important thing is that you sample one or two little corners and tell the story -- not that you eat yourself sick. The mistake many amateur investigative reporters make is they try to eat the whole house. Editors' don't like stories like that, and readers don't find them credible; more importantly, they don't find them interesting.

The mistake many professional "news" reporters make is they try to sell us the gingerbread house as a piece of prime real estate in the Swiss Alps, promising hours of fabulous winter fun in a secluded beaucolic location. This is after all what makes them professionals -- their ability to convince us that butter and margarine are a well-groomed expert ski run.

I have not eaten the whole gingerbread house of Sept. 11, but I have tasted it, and I have from time to time shared my discovery over the past five years and watched people's faces as they have responded. I've also written up the chart many times, as well as discussed it in astrological classes with astrologers far better versed in traditional astrology than am I, and discovered the same thing. In this chart, the "secret enemy terrorists" and the "official government" swap places but look very much the same; they are directly involved with one another; and both are on the rise. But astrology isn't proof of anything, it's just potentially helpful and interesting, and it can give us the advantage of a caution, or to be alert to an opportunity.

Here is how I know Dick Cheney did Sept. 11 -- from a photo of the Pentagon provided by the Defense Department -- and the use of my mind in a trained special function, indeed, an art form verging on obsolete, known as logic. I invite you to take five or 10 minutes out of your day and meditate on this picture, and apply some logic. In so doing you're going somewhere that most rational people are afraid to go, because it will undermine the basis of their precious rationality; you'll be asking a question many are afraid to ask because they don't want the answer or what it implies. Please notice how you feel looking, especially if this is your first trek through this issue.

<< Photo of Pentagon >>

This photo is the aftermath of the crime scene, taken about a day or two after whatever occurred -- alleged to have been a Boeing 757-200 airliner, weighing 200,000 pounds, colliding with a steel, concrete and stone building at about 400 nautical miles per hour, approaching the wall at a low altitude, parallel with the ground, and from a 45-degree angle to the wall. What do you see?
< link to Boeing product page >

I see a building that's collapsed outward, which means energy inside the building pushed the walls outward. I see a lot of pretty clean building debris. I don't see airplane wreckage or evidence of a blunt impact from the outside, which would have presumably (according to the dependable laws of kinetic energy) sent at least some of the debris in the other direction than it appears to have gone. In this picture, nothing is burned, such as the ground. There's no evidence of a massive fuel spill that would have basically splattered an ocean of jet fuel everywhere and lit the entire lawn on fire.

Most notably, where is the plane, or any sign of it? We've been told that it burned up, which often happens in an airplane crash. Typically there will be at least some wreckage, and you will sooner or later find the jets and landing gear, which are titanium. Take a few hours and see if you can find any photos of the landing gear, jets or recognizable debris from the Pentagon crash. See if you can find any reference to the Black Box having been found, and note when the last time there was an air crash where the Black Box went missing. But all that exceeds the bounds of our discussion. Let's stay inside the fence.

The photo you see here is the alleged point of impact of a very large airplane that we were told burned up in a fire. But much of the debris is lily-white, i.e., not scorched, in the very place where 100 tons of aluminum alloy, titanium, plastic compound, fuel and several dozen people supposedly vaporized from heat and fire. There's no crater. It looks like, well, like a gingerbread house.

Now, you can use your imagination and pretend the airplane is somewhere in there. You can accept the official story and believe that the plane disintegrated as it penetrated the concentric rings of the building -- but that won't seem credible if you're looking at this photo, which shows major damage only to the outer or E ring. You can make up any little story you like and account for what you cannot see any way you like, but listen to your mind doing so as it happens. You can say, "nobody could have ever covered this up," but that is not actual thought, it's an emotional reaction; it is speculation based on nothing. Much bigger things have been covered up and are covered up every day.

No matter where you nibble the gingerbread house of the Pentagon, you'll taste gingerbread. When you consider that according to his flight instructors, the alleged pilot, Hani Hanjour, could not fly an airplane; or that that the impact happened about 59 minutes after the World Trade Center was first hit -- an astonishing amount of time, indeed, an eternity, for the almighty Air Force to prepare and get whatever incoming thing out of the sky before it could hit the military headquarters of the free world. No matter where you look, you get a story that does not add up to reality. The way you know a lie is a lie is because the facts add up differently every time. You may not know the truth; you just recognize a lie. If your kid tells you he was in the park at 4:30 pm and then says he was at his friend's house at the same time, you know he's lying about one thing or the other, or both, and you may well surmise that a motive exists for that lie. Then if you pursue the truth you're likely to find it -- but while you don't notice the lie, you're unlikely to do so.

Your eyes, looking at a photograph, should at least tell you there is a problem with the official story. The fact that few people notice or acknowledge the problem does not mean it does not exist. We need to ask their investment in ignoring it.

Now, let's apply a little more logic. If there was no passenger jet crash at the Pentagon, then every other part of the official Sept. 11 story is subject to doubt, as is everyone who regurgitates that story unquestioningly. You would not taste the chimney of a gingerbread house and find it to be made of cookie, then taste the wall and expect it to be made of Tyvec and particleboard. None of the so-called facts withstand five minutes of focused scrutiny. But as long as you don't look too closely, or sniff the thing or taste it, you have your prime real estate in the Alps, and you don't need to deal with the implications. For example, what did happen to the Pentagon? Obviously something did. But what?

It would appear from other photographs (which depict a clean puncture about 10 feet in diameter, and a fire inside the building with very little disturbance outside) that it was hit by some kind of missile with a conventional warhead, such as a cruise missile equipped to puncture a concrete bunker (called a bunker-buster, since a bunker was indeed busted). But the last time anyone checked, no terrorists in Afghanistan (or Iraq or Iran) had access to one of those, most certainly not in DC, Virginia or Maryland. Well, who in DC, Virginia or Maryland has access to a missile with a conventional warhead? Who could possibly strike the Pentagon 59 minutes after an attack on the United States had begun? Perhaps make a list of candidates and see who turns up on that list.

Anyone with eyes and a brain can see through a lie if they want; they can see the truth if they want; anyone can use logic and extend the implications of that truth; the real issue is willingness.
I have a hunch the willingness is starting to accumulate in some people who don't have a big investment in having it not be there. The problem for nearly everyone else, particularly those who have an investment in the lie, is the implication of seeing. It is relatively easy to look directly at fraud and see fraud. It is very difficult for most people to accept the changes within their own consciousness that are the natural consequence of doing so -- therefore most people pretend the fraud does not exist, though often making excuses for it in the process, because accepting it is too inconvenient. The reason lies are so popular is they are convenient.

All fraud is based on trust. Once that trust is violated, then the basis of trust would wisely be questioned, if you're not going to get fooled again (and you may want to be). The problem is that we have been fooled again and again as a result of that nonexistent airplane at the Pentagon, up to the present day. Our entire political landscape has become gingerbread -- very cruel, deadly gingerbread with a lot of people dying; indeed, in Iraq, far more people die in a month than died in all of the incidents on Sept. 11. If you publicly question the doctrine, though, you can be called something like a conspiracy nut, or delusional. I can get away with it because I'm an astrologer -- I'm already considered delusional by the mainstream media establishment, except to the extent they can make money on my horoscope column.

As information comes out and the evidence of a problem (whatever problem you like, such as climate change, the forthcoming Iran war, or whatever) mounts, we need to remember this issue of perceiving the truth being a function of an individual's willingness to do so. It is only rarely, I would even say never but I'll stop short of that, because the evidence is not available, or does not exist. The evidence is everywhere. The fact that everyone is choosing not to notice something that you are noticing does not make you stupid; it makes you aware and brave.
We need to remember the collective quality this denial will have, by extension: we are all participants in a gingerbread society. We need to assess our situation and remember the investment we have, collectively and individually, in believing what is not true, and what this investment makes possible for others who take advantage of it -- and what it prevents for we who say we want justice and peace.

Information is going to continue to come out, and bad things are going to continue to happen in our name. They will, in a sense, all be based on the gingerbread house of Sept. 11, though the sequence of events will be easily forgotten by we who can barely remember what we did last week. Gradually we will awaken. Some spiritual types who are newfound war critics have been saying gee, this war is wonderful, it's making us wake up to how bad war is, and what crooks are in Washington, and look, the United States is imperialist and we don't have a democracy. What a great war, it's coming with so many beautiful lessons, we are finally getting it. I would say that's a damned selfish price for others to pay so we can wake up. But it's also a damned selfish price for others to pay so that ExxonMobil can provide home heating oil for profit when we can get heat right out of the ground.

Truth Meets Illusion? Or Fantasy Meets Fantasy?

Astrological pundits over and over again talk about Saturn in Leo meeting Neptune in Aquarius head-on being an encounter between truth and illusion. I have another theory to offer today.

Saturn in Leo, considered collectively, represents self-absorption as it manifests on an individual level. When you eavesdrop in a restaurant, what do you hear people talking about? Generally, themselves and the ways others have injured them (generally, in the case of women) and what they want to conquer (generally, in the case of men). For the most part, everyone is walking around all day talking about, thinking about, worrying about, and taking care of, themselves; we are after all perfectly entitled to do so, it's a lot of trouble, and we've all worked hard, learned, grown and stretched our personal limits to be able to confidently put that dinner on that table. We can talk about anything we please, such as ourselves.

Some more enlightened individuals may extend this to their friends and families, but many people have a strict policy of considering nothing further. Someone could be choking to death at the next table and nobody would notice. Indeed, notice how people keep talking when the person right in front of them is choking. Every last bit of data is considered only in the context of "how does this affect me?" Advertisers and politicians know this, and take full advantage of it. We are educated over and over again to maintain the cycle.

Neptune in Aquarius is a similar image, but applicable to society in general. Aquarius is the sign of groups, the community, ideology and fixed collective patterns. It is also the datasphere. Neptune in this sign represents the electronic haze that has soaked into every corner of our lives, and the "content" of that haze, which is essentially some form of glorified self-absorption with a Visa logo stuck on it. Dating back to the pretend impeachment of Bill Clinton, Neptune in Aquarius has turned reality into a television program and shrunk the world down to the size of your cell phone's contact list. It is an image of how, in the middle of the slaughter of a quarter-million Iraqis, and the buildup to a similar slaughter in Iran, we must obsess for days or weeks over Britney Spears' haircut. Do we really want to be thinking about all the kids and grandparents and mothers and fathers who will lose limbs, go deaf or spill their blood into the ground? Look at the deductions on your paycheck. Do you want to think about how much of that money went to Halliburton?
Do we really want to be considering that we not be able to do shit about it as the next war happens?

Saturn in Leo is reflected in Neptune in Aquarius, and we see...ourselves, but it's us wearing the costume of a twenty-something supposed rock star. When the media considers whether Britney had a breakdown, that's us, wondering when the world and all the pressure we're under will drive us insane. When the media considers Britney's bouts with rehab, that's us, counting the bottles in the medicine cabinet. Then we cut to six drug commercials.
The repeated discussion of Anna Nicole's corpse is the reflection of our image of ourselves as spiritually dead, and the marketing economy teaching us to be dead so we can keep buying what we don't need in order to feel alive for three seconds. Saturn-Neptune is the screech of feedback so loud and so disturbing that we may actually hear it. It is the image of death so disgusting we may actually feel it in the pit of our stomachs. It's the sense of helplessness so overbearing that we may actually question whether we can do something about it. But it is not the clash of reality with illusion: it is the collision of one illusion with another, such that both are seen for what they are.
Chiron, Nessus and an Identity Crisis

These are not the only two planets in the sky, nor the only two on the Leo-Aquarius axis. All readers of Planet Waves have significant factors on the Leo-Aquarius axis: a massive generation has Pluto there; sub-generations variously have Chiron, Saturn, or Jupiter; and many people reading have Neptune in Scorpio, which squares Aquarius and is, was or will be taking transits from anything in Leo or Aquarius. Add to that the approximately one-quarter of society with either their Sun, Moon or rising sign in Aquarius.
Since Neptune entered Aquarius nearly a decade ago, we have more recently experienced several additions to Aquarius. Most notable is Chiron, which is like the opposite energy of Neptune: Chiron focuses, Neptune dissolves. Chiron documents, Neptune imagines and then forgets. Chiron is aware and Neptune is dreaming. The other way, Neptune imagines and Chiron applies the vision. As Chiron approaches a conjunction to both Jupiter and Neptune on May 27, 2009, the process of focusing will continue and show some interesting results.
One of those is that a rather beautiful mass-scale identity crisis epidemic, already begun, will spread throughout the world. Neptune in Aquarius has soaked together the levels of awareness where group and individual awareness meet, making them indistinguishable. Chiron is getting between those layers and peeling them apart. Notably, not everyone is susceptible to the effects of Chiron. Chiron can only wake you up when you want to wake up, or need to do so desperately. It tends to go over the heads of everyone in between, and that is a lot of people. You could say that Chiron represents the most unpopular kind of awareness, the one that compels us to do something.

For those who need something a little more penetrating, we have Nessus, which calls our attention to unmitigated cruelty on the one hand, and our sense of responsibility for it, on the other. Nessus is where the buck stops, and if you wake up one day deciding it stops with you, congratulations. If you decide you are a vital part of your social matrix and want to have a positive, healing, creative influence, congratulations. If you decide you don't want to be subject to mass-delusions and that you're sick of believing lies, congratulations. If you are discovering you are something besides a consumer, welcome. If you are discovering you need friends who talk about, think about and spend money on something more than themselves, right on. If you experience a moment of doubt, about the official story or what they told about you, don't forget. If you can no longer stand to be terrified of being different, welcome.

Total Lunar Eclipse of March
by Kirsti Melto

Full Moon in Virgo - March 3, 2007, 23:17 UT

The eclipse occurs on the South Node. The Moon at 12+ degrees Virgo conjuncts retrograding asteroid Psyche and squares plutino Ixion and asteroid Hopi on the Great Attractor.

The Moon is the apex planet of a Yod formed by the Moon, Venus and Chiron. Asteroid Amor is at the same degree as Chiron. The Moon semisquares retrograding Juno and centaur planet Echeclus in Libra. The Sun in Pisces is in parallel conjunction with Uranus. The Sun = Venus/Chiron = Asbolus/Nessus = Eris/Mars.

A Fire Trine, formed by the conjunction of Saturn and asteroid Sphinx in Leo; a triple conjunction of Jupiter, cubewano Quaoar and asteroid Toro in Sagittarius; and the conjunction of dwarf planet Eris and centaur Asbolus in Aries, is completed as a Kite configuration by Neptune in Aquarius. Pallas is in conjunction with Neptune. Venus is in conjunction with Asbolus and Eris. Toro squares the lunar nodes.

Neptune septiles Pluto. A septile is a seventh harmonic aspect of 51 degrees and 26 minutes. Neptune forms a long series of septiles with Pluto between the years 2002 and 2012. The nearest exact septile between these planets occurred on February 22.

A triple conjunction of Pluto, asteroid Eros and asteroid Lilith squares the Aries Point. Asteroid Apollo in Scorpio, right on the ascendant of the chart cast for The Hague, Netherlands, sesquisquares the Aries Point. Apollo semisquares Pluto. Chiron and Amor semisquare Pluto as well. Pluto = Apollo/Chiron.

Mercury sextiles Pluto and the Galactic Core, trines Juno-Echeclus conjunction and quintiles Ixion. Ixion is receiving also a trine from Venus, a septile from Mars, a square from Uranus and a sextile from Chiron. Mars semisquares Jupiter and forms a novile to Uranus.

Saturn, Neptune, Sedna and Apollo form a Fixed Grand Cross.

Lilith = 0 Capricorn 05
Eros = 1 Capricorn 49
Atlantis = 2 Leo 43 r
Urania = 3 Aquarius 12
Nessus = 9 Aquarius 16
Psyche = 12 Virgo 15 r
Amor = 12 Aquarius 29
Ixion = 13 Sagittarius 27
Hopi = 13 Sagittarius 29
Apollo = 15 Scorpio 34
Toro = 16 Sagittarius 12
Quaoar = 17 Sagittarius 39
Asbolus = 18 Aries 00
Sedna = 19 Taurus 16
Sphinx = 19 Leo 41 r
Eris = 20 Aries 29
Echeclus = 27 Libra 03 r

Full Moon 4 Mar 2007

Mayan Moon Report
By Carol McCloud

Full Moon/Eclipse -March 3, 2007 (13+Virgo)
3 Ahau (Etznab Pulse)

New Moon/Eclipse -March 18, 2007 (28+Pisces)
5 Men (Chuen Pulse)

Spring Equinox-March 21, 2007
8 Etznab (Chuen Pulse)

Pluto Stations Retro- March 31, 2007
5 Lamat (Kan Pulse)

Mercury Retrograde Period 
February 13 (11 Ik) - March 8, 2007(8 Chicchan)

AT THE BEGINNING of the month we will be in one of the most intense periods in the calendar, the time-pulse of Etznab. This 13-day period or pulse relates to the archetypal Sword of truth and a journey through the Obsidian mirror. Etznab is about truth or consequences. The essence here can be related to the sword of Excalibur and King Arthur. It is about learning to express the nobility and truth within. This is about wielding power, but learning how to do so out of integrity and in service to the greater good. This balance is a fine line and not so often mastered. Power is addictive and once tasted not so easily given away. There is a sacrifice that must be made, and that is ego. This two-sided mirror can be of service or destruction. We decide how we want to play the game. As we meditate on how we choose to work with the new energies in the pulse that is ahead of us, our intentions are set and the pulse begins its forward motion.

At this point we will be scanning the matrix in one wide-angle lens reality check. The shadow side is that we can at any time conveniently fall back asleep when we do not like what we see and continue to stay safely medicated in the illusion. It takes time to see this clearly. Etznab is the blade that cuts through all that is not real with precision and grace. It is the knife or scalpel of the surgeon that will open the wound and heal it. Etznab helps to pull back the focus, allowing that wide-angle view. This next week will be our chance to look down the hall of mirrors and learn how to put every fractured piece back into balance, seeing all sides for what they are.

In this period we will be shown much in the way of the world of duality, that which is within our own soul and that which is mirrored back to us. What we will eventually learn is that on some level it all merges into one, as we take a journey through this hall of mirrors.

A full moon/lunar eclipse will happen on March 3, 2007 - 3 Ahau. Ahau is the sign associated with the Ancestors. The next day-sign of 4 Imix begins a 20-day period that runs down the center of the Tzolkin calendar. The Tzolkin has 13 columns with this period marking the seventh and center column. Seven is the sign of the mystic and this point in the cycle also relates to a period of great enlightenment. These twenty days are very powerful as they will show us important convergence points within the micro/macro cycle of Mayan time. 

During this intense 20-day cycle, we will have 2 eclipses, along with a Mercury retrograde period from Feb.13 - March 8, 2007. Eclipses often happen during these 20 days and during the days surrounding this center point in the Tzolkin. The power and intensity of eclipses, and these center days of convergence are very similar as we are being called to become a new bridge between past and future.

The day of the new moon/eclipse is the fifth day of the cycle of Chuen, is represented by the Monkey, a cosmic artisan and weaver of the web of reality. This fifth day is the day-sign of Men, the Eagle, representing a detached visionary focus for the future of humanity. The pulse of Chuen will bring through a trickster-like energy of one who does not like to follow rules, and this will express itself on many unseen levels. The sign of Chuen relates to both Mercury and Uranus in their most chaotic and dynamic expression. As we move through this period, it is important to accept that life in general is not a smooth ride and can often be a tangled path that eventually leads us to deeper truths.

The Spring Equinox and beginning of the New Year will happen on 8 Etznab. This is a day of double integrity in that both the number eight and Etznab have elements related to a universal integrity check. This integrity-reality check and the Archetypal energies of Etznab will be an ongoing theme throughout 2007.

Following a Mayan Time-Pulse

Following a 13-day Mayan time cycle allows us an opportunity to tune into the energies of creation. As with the cycle of the New Moon to Full Moon, it is a cycle of manifestation. Each of these Mayan time cycles or pulses of the year allows us an opportunity to tune into the energies of a natural creative process. With the count of 13 we can use the first day as a point for deep meditation, focus, and intention. On the first day we can ask ourselves what we want to manifest as it relates to the meaning of each particular time pulse and as it relates to the sign of the Moon and other planetary transits. The first day of the time-pulse and each succeeding day will relate to a particular energy and vibration that can be felt collectively and also individually, depending on the day you were born.

Each 13-day pulse moves in the form of the G; it is the unwinding of a cycle that mirrors the movement of galactic consciousness. Think of the Mayan number for one, “Hun” (whoon), as the point of unity, pulsing out a counterclockwise ripple of energy. The Mayan number 13 is the next level of the spiral, taking us up the winding pyramid of consciousness and creation. As Connie Kaplan writes in her book, The Women’s Book of Dreaming, counterclockwise is the Shamanic direction. “It is the direction of the galactic spin, the direction the Earth rotates and the direction the Earth moves around the Sun. Counterclockwise is also the direction the Moon moves around the Earth, the direction the Milky Way spirals, and the direction of the DNA helix.”

When you follow these counterclockwise pulses of time-no-time, you will be learning to reprogram your inner knowledge and intuition. Moving in the counterclockwise direction sends our dreaming consciousness into the Galactic Realms. When we have anchored this galactic pulsing of time and the spiral becomes strong enough, we can follow our dreams all the way back to the Great Dreamer and Primordial Creatrix who dreamed the world into being. In the Mayan Calendar, this is represented by the first Glyph in the series of 20, Imix, the crocodile. Continued.

For more information about the 13-day time-pulses that create the Spiral of Mayan time, please look further into the Galactic Alchemy website. or email Carol at

Ready or Not
by Judith Gayle, Editor of Political Waves

AS I write, Saturn has moved into position to stare down Neptune, and that's a truly discomforting prospect; these are not compatible energies. Neptune has soft, blurry edges and whispers seductively to just come back to bed...Saturn stands with its hands on its hips and directs us to take out the garbage, balance the checkbook. If Neptune is the snooze button, Saturn is the alarm clock itself.

Formlessness meets Form. Truthiness meets Truth. Religion meets Science.

Something's gotta give.

This week it was Wall Street. The Dow dropped off a cliff for the first time since 2001, partly, it's suggested, because of a dip in China's stock market. Most Americans don't know that we are heavily in debt to China, having borrowed steadily to fund Bush's wars -- just as most Americans don't think about the fact that there's no longer a Fort Knox to back up all that paper we print; when we need more, we borrow it at an interest rate from the Federal Reserve System, an independent federal government agency composed of powerful bankers.

From early 2001 to mid 2003, the Federal Reserve lowered its interest rates 13 times, from 6.25 to 1.00%, to fight (and mask) recession...this contributed to the "housing bubble," which is now not only flat but beginning to shrivel like a kid's day-old balloon.

In 2004, the Fed began to raise the interest rate again, which now stands at 5.25%. It doesn't appear we can put off recession much longer; Greenspan predicts we'll feel it by the end of the year. Meanwhile, our indebtedness...personal, as well as truly alarming -- and it doesn't help that, despite Bush's claims of a glowing economy, the actual wealth that finds its way into the average citizen's bank account has not increased, but instead, has dwindled.

Slowly and surely the credibility of the White House has eroded until we're faced with concluding there is no veracity in anything they do or say. New polls indicate that 67%, fully two out of every three citizens, neither approve of Bush's "surge" nor approve of his leadership; 63% do not believe that his intelligence reports are "honest or accurate"; 73% don't consider Bush respected by international leaders. 

Violence in Iraq is escalating, and the Taliban is making a resurgence in Afghanistan. A number of highly placed military officers appear ready to resign rather than go to war with Iran, while leaks of a new assessment by the Joint Chiefs indicate that our military is strained to the point of exhaustion, rendered unable to respond to any new threat, and will need several years to recoup. 

And yet we do not insist the government be held accountable. Nixon (almost -- he resigned first) and Clinton endured impeachment for less egregious behavior in office, but we seem to think it would be "worse" if we pursued the Constitution on this issue and demanded Iraq would be "worse" if we left. The energy we're caught in keeps us wafting with these issues, lethargic and undecided -- it's like being afraid of fear; we just don't want to think about it. We're staring down the barrel of "worse" without understanding how destructive it is. Saturn will ask us to bite that bullet, to understand that these aren't elective choices we face, but required.

Global warming has become an accepted emergency around the world, but the United States continues to backpedal on cooperation, relying on the theories of people like Pastor Jerry Falwell, who recently declared global warming a "myth." Protection of the oil conglomerates, of course, is the more pragmatic reason we drag our feet. A very Neptunian substance, oil...and many say the real reason we're in Iraq. So while the White House "studies the problem," we impede international projects to address the serious issues of polar melting, radical weather patterns and projections of drought, loss of species and irreversible decline. 

Frankly, a Saturnian demand for accountability sounds appropriate, but it will have to break through our conflicted illusions before we welcome it in. An example? We surround ourselves with violent images, movies, music...we obsess about war and borders and "righteousness"...we allow .50-calibre sniper rifles to be sold with the ease of acquiring a handgun -- but when one of our children goes berserk in a school yard and murders with the same disconnected ease they display as they rack up kills in a video game, we shake our heads in disbelief.

We cry about "early detection" and "family values" as if we were witnessing some unthinkable anomaly. Yet common sense would tell us that our children are a reflection of our culture; their perceptions are filtered through our own -- we have only ourselves to thank. We need to wake up and smell the gun powder.

In our personal lives and relationships, we probably have "homework" to do as well -- big issues gone unaddressed, places where we've fooled ourselves, or let things go on too long. You wouldn't run your household or your business the way this government runs the ship of state, but it's easier to look outside of ourselves than within.

Perhaps our own lives could use a little myth-busting, too. The comfort zones that we erect for ourselves are too often tiny rafts in a vast sea of dysfunction -- if we bob and float too long, we'll be washed away. For some of us, it's probably time to accept the truth of our situation and paddle for shore.

Saturn and Neptune...not much fun, these Big Fellas, conflicting one another...but their opposition will continue to bring all this into stark relief, demand that we make choices we've put off much too long. 

So -- ready or not -- it's time to stop being afraid of fear, terrified of terror... it's time to roll up our sleeves and get to the difficult chore of facing reality. Time to take out the garbage and balance the checkbook.

Planet Waves
Weekly Horoscope for Friday, March 02, 2007, #652 - By ERIC FRANCIS

Aries (March 20-April 19)
If you could only see through these walls, if you could only wake up inside that dream, if you could only feel what everyone else is feeling, if only they could feel you...if you could only recognize this is what's already happening. Some things are so big they are nearly impossible to see. You need to look for small clues, follow the pattern of synchronicities, notice the details. Imagine that you are sleeping and dreaming right now and you realize that's what you're doing and you decide to wake up inside the dream where you have complete creative authority and the freedom to be aware of anything or anyone.
Taurus (April 19-May 20)
You may feel as if you're living in a vacuum, but actually you're much closer in touch with an aspect of your awareness that is extremely sensitive now. This is providing you access to a different dimension of yourself than you can normally access. So yes, something is missing, and as a result, something significant is present, but it's subtle. You need to listen to yourself and feel through the many layers of who you are. If you're just a little bit persistent and disciplined, you may get to touch the hot, raging core of yourself, and feed and nourish yourself on that fire.
Gemini (May 20-June 21)
If you've been wanting to get the discussion onto a higher level, work with the upcoming station direct of your ruling planet Mercury. The change of direction occurs in Aquarius, a sign harmonized to yours, as well as conjunct Pallas -- the asteroid of the mind. Here is a reading of the chart. Approach the issue from the edges; don't plunge into the core, at first. Start with the theme, not the plot; the effect rather than the cause. Then slowly allow the deeper feelings, the inner truths, or the as-yet-unrevealed ideas to come into the light of day. Handle the truth gently, and it will be gentle to you.
Cancer (June 21-July 22)
You're someone whose faith is typically so strong that it's all-pervasive. That's another way of saying that it can fade to the background rather than being a central focus of your life. Yours is a cardinal sign -- high initiative, strong sense of individuality and a desire to push the river. This week as the Sun and Uranus join forces in Pisces, the river can pick you up and carry you. Focus on your own boat; look at the scenery; let life take you where it will. You have every reason to trust yourself, and by that I mean you and all the forces and sources of creativity that are feeding and guiding you every day.
Leo (July 22-Aug. 23)
You're in a truly excellent position to improve your station in life, refine your way of life, and harmonize with the people around you. Indeed this is likely to develop even as you watch, but definitely keep watching because there are certain key opportunities that you need to look for among the many that will walk right up to you. They involve not individuals so much as how they work together. They may not be aware of one another to the extent that you are aware of them. Something is happening; make sure the right thing happens by gently guiding the focus in the direction of maximum awareness.
Virgo (Aug. 23-Sep. 22)
You may feel like people are pushing you past your limits, but clearly you've invited this energy into your life, and clearly your limits go a lot further than you thought the last time you checked. Actually, you have two sets of limits: the ones that show up when you don't feel safe or trusting, and the ones that show up when you do. Well, in the second instance, we're really not talking about a solid boundary, but rather a moving dimension of yourself that you can stretch or expand as far as you like. Anyway, the nice thing is that your energy is coming back to full force, and people are right there ready to play with you.
Libra (Sep. 22-Oct. 23)
For all the beauty you bring into the world, something else typically happens when you try to do it intentionally; I would guess (and this is a guess, but based on your solar chart) that you either fall short of your own expectations, or wish that what you create would come out as beautifully as you see it in your mind's eye. The current weeks provide true determination to refine and clarify your expressive talent. I suggest you work with tools that are hot, or any process that involves heat: a kiln, welding, soldering, something requiring friction, or in particular, anything that uses electricity. Feel the power in your hands -- and shape the world till you see yourself truly.
Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 22)
The kind of assistance that a partner or loved one needs is the kind you can readily offer right now: help them find or express who they are with no reservation, shame, or resistance, particularly from you, but with you representing the world. Step back and create the space for a meaningful, juicy moment about them, based on what you know about creating similar spaces for yourself. Reveal your secrets; use your psychic powers to gently open up the environment and make it feel perfectly natural to explore in the cosmic mirror that is so familiar to you, and so strange to many others.
Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 22)
At your present juncture, you may feel confused at any moment you try to act. You may be concerned that your efforts will backfire, or be hearing the voices of past spiritual teachers that say "don't try, just be." I would propose that the whole point of everything you're going through is to free you from the ideas of the past, particularly of your father and grandfathers. You can forgive their fuzzy thinking, their superstitions and their tendency to believe lies, as long as you affirm your own commitment to truth, clarity and focus. Right now that promise to yourself is worth a heck of a lot.
Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 20)
Ideas about money are more important than money -- this, I trust, you are figuring out. While yours tend to follow fixed patterns and while others may call you set in your ways, one of your ways is constant reevaluation of your priorities and values. With so much happening in your neighboring sign, Aquarius, this process is strongly focused right now. Information is shaking loose from the tree of your mind, and what you learn the next week or two can and very likely will change the course of your life. Truth is compelling, and remember, astrology suggests that you are never satisfied to have your life alone be good.
Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 19)
The focus is on your birth sign right now, including a cool or rather hot alignment of planets in Aquarius, among them a conjunction of Mars and Chiron -- two warrior planets -- that will be developing the next couple of weeks. More immediately, the Sun is making a conjunction to your ruling planet Uranus in Pisces. This is about progress, potentially developing so quickly that it feels like it may run out of control. Actually, it's more likely to follow well-established architecture, though you may be surprised at the scale on which things develop, and the intensity of the process: the building is always bigger than the drawing, is it not? Keep your focus and please be open to your ideas about your own life.

Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)
You've waited for this moment a long time, so long that you may have forgotten that you were patiently carrying yourself forward in small increments to get here. If you're waiting for someone to tell you, I'm here to do just precisely that. This is a time in your life like none other, and it can lead you somewhere like none other. You're not only so deeply into the process of reinventing yourself that you're actually getting results, you're also learning the most important techniques to ensure that you have that ability anywhere and anytime you need it. As for others who may factor into your desires, you have every reason to be faithful, patient and supportive of their process of coming to terms with themselves.

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