China and the Full Moon - Jan. 24th, 2016
I recently completed an essay on Economic Growth in the 21st Century
(April, 2015) and in it I noted:
· That in the aftermath of the 1929 stock market crash President Roosevelt enacted the Glass-Steagall bill which prohibited commercial banks from participating in investment banking. This Act was repealed by the Clinton administration in 1999 and by 2008 the US financial system had again crashed.
· The first G20 summit was held in 2008 in an effort to restore economic growth and limit the collapse of corrupt financial markets. The result has been a $57 trillion increase in global debt and no benefit to the working man or to the middle class.
China’s growth rate dropped sharply as a result of the 2008 crash and in response its government started its own stimulus program which worked until money became tight, leaving China with a debt to GDP ratio of over 200% compared to the US debt to GDP ratio of about 100%.
[The recommended ‘safety limit’ of debt to GDP is argued to be between 40 and 60%.]
[The recommended ‘safety limit’ of debt to GDP is argued to be between 40 and 60%.]
As the Chinese economy started to slow in mid 2014 their stock market started to rise as the government eased restrictions on using borrowed money to make investments and 20 million middle class Chinese took up the opportunity to use their savings, and even home mortgages, to gamble on the stock exchange.
When the six month period had finished, the sell-off continued suggesting that China’s economy had become inherently unstable, and that China may have to resort to alternative methods of averting economic disaster.
‘So this stock market crash — unlike the one that began in 2008 — could create a broad grassroots backlash against the authorities. And while China isn't a democracy, the government is still sensitive to public opinion, knowing that social unrest could lead to a revolution or coup.’
The People’s Republic of China’s (PRC) 1949 horoscope has Saturn on the 8th house cusp (Koch - 6.49 Virgo) and in mundane astrology:
· Saturn represents the country’s infrastructure, its bureaucracies, its economic principles and its law and order.
· And the 8th house relates to its financial relationship with other countries.
Hence the influence of Saturn in China’s PRC horoscope plays an important role in indicating the competency of its government and the soundness of its fiscal policies.
Unfortunately Saturn in mainland China’s horoscope is without support from the rest of its planets (no aspects) and perhaps this explains why the country adopted an isolationist policy from 1949 to 1978.
The Saturn cycle takes about 29 years to complete and it’s interesting to note that on its first Saturn Return in 1979, China and America established full diplomatic relationships, something which at the time was regarded as ‘the world's most important bilateral relationship of the century’. (And incidentally the year that China’s ‘one child’ policy was introduced.)
Just prior to the upcoming Full Moon, Saturn will make its first square since the 2008 Saturn cycle commenced and the importance of the first square of Saturn is its function as a testing time - a test of China’s economic relationship with the rest of the world.
Transiting Saturn is near the 11th house cusp which involves local government so this test will include the concerns of ‘rice roots’ Chinese.
Points worth noting are:
· The Saturn ‘testing’ square, as discussed above.
· The axis of the Full moon on China’s Ascendant emphasising China’s self-image.
· The completion of Pluto’s destructive (and ultimately regenerating) influence of the last 4 years on China’s leadership, its communication of fiscal data, its monetary delusions and its socialist aspirations. (As indicated by Pluto’s square aspects to the 8th House Stellium of Sun, Mercury, Neptune and Ceres.)
· All of the above coming to a head on this Full Moon; under strong influences of idealistic confusion. (Uranus conjunct North Node; Neptune semisquare & Jupiter/North Node trine 12th House Jupiter)
A look at the birth chart of China’s leader, Xi Jinping, surrounding the Full Moon indicates a time of changing attitude as transiting Pluto and Mercury oppose his natal Mercury and transiting Uranus forms a square to that opposition. (Note that Xi took leadership in 2012 when Pluto was transiting square to the China horoscope’s Sun and in the revered Chinese year of the ‘Water Dragon’.)
Xi’s ability to control and balance material concerns such as corruption (Sun trine Saturn/Neptune in Libra, sextile Pluto) - without regard for emotional concerns (Venus square Moon, semisquare Sun) – could come adrift as Jupiter squares his Sun and Neptune squares his Jupiter.
Since 2008 China’s grand plan for modernising infrastructures has assisted in keeping oil prices around the $90-$100/barrel mark, but in recent times the US has markedly increased its shale oil production while OPEC countries refuse to reduce supply, resulting in a rapid drop in oil price which has recently gone below $30/ barrel.
China still maintains its oil import level as a stockpiling measure and it currently has 91 million barrels in reserve which would last its industries 30 days if the situation in the Middle East reduced supply; and it wants to increase its reserve to 168 million barrels but has currently run out of storage.
China’s alignment in the Middle East is with Iran to which it covertly supplies nuclear materials and this combined with its reliance on Russia as its second largest oil supplier leaves China open to the political intrigues that are currently unfolding in the Middle East.
While China’s illusionary stock market boom continues to recorrect and consumer demand remains low, China’s huge debt becomes more pressing. In another attempt to improve its economy China devalued its currency in August 2015, and has since then devalued it further,spreading fears of a ‘currency war’ designed to increase exports and decrease imports.
An article in The Economist on the 15th of January notes that: ‘A sharp devaluation would wrong-foot speculators. But it would also cause mayhem in China and export its deflationary pressures. The poison would spread across Asia and into rich countries. And because interest rates are low and many governments indebted, the world is ill-equipped to cope.’
China’s attempt at western style growth via infrastructure and the stimulation of consumer spending has failed the ‘Saturn test’ and perhaps this could have been predicted by a look at its founder’s birth chart.
Mao Zedong’s birth chart shows few aspects to his Capricorn Sun in the 12th house which paints him as a visionary without practical skills. He had
· excellent communication skills (Grand Trine – Mercury/Moon/North Node),
· a calling to create a fundamental change in human values (Neptune conjunct Pluto),
· ambition (Capricorn Ascendant),
But he lacked the wherewithal to establish a responsible government.
As mentioned previously Saturn in a country’s horoscope represents the nation’s infrastructure, its bureaucracies, its economic principles and its law and order. When Saturn is half way through its cycle it is a time of harvesting rewards from the principles set up. At the time of that opposition in China’s chart (1966) Mao commenced the Cultural Revolution which resulted in the deaths of 1.5 million people and only ended with Mao’s demise a couple of years prior to Saturn’s new cycle in 1979.
Prior to the first Chinese Revolution in 1911, China was ruled for 4,000 years by dynasties where the ruler supposedly had a ‘Mandate of Heaven’ and as the ‘father of modern economics’ Adam Smith noted:
China’s experiment in communism had failed and was then followed up by a program of ‘socialism with Chinese characteristics’ under the wily rule of Deng Xiaoping. Deng turned China into a world power although he still ‘believed above all in preserving his own authority and that of the party’. Strangely enough Deng’s birth chart shows his Saturn to have the same deficiency as the 1949 China chart - it too has no planetary aspects.
Deng stood down after the Tiananmen Square Massacre of June 4th1989 and strangely enough this prodemocracy rally occurred with transiting Neptune conjunct Saturn in a favourable trine angle to China’s un-aspected Saturn, while Pluto was also in an opportunist sextile angle with Saturn.
Here was a chance for the new China to find structure – but unfortunately the New Moon of that night (in Gemini and on China’s 5th house cusp, conjunct Jupiter) was at right angles to its Saturn – the government, its people and its leader were at loggerheads; more than a thousand young people died for a democratic belief that has long been accepted in the western world as a normal principle of government.
Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman made an observation about Chinese president Xi Jinping’s leadership: “When it comes to economic policy Xi-who-must-be-obeyed has no idea what he’s doing”.
The 1911 revolution against imperial power had as its original ‘principles’- nationalism, democracy and people’s livelihood. Mainland China has a strong belief in nationalism but it fails to understand what the people want since its lack of democratic principles has moved it backwards towards the imperial rule it once had.
Meanwhile Taiwan is having an election this Saturday the 16th of January and it would appear that the Democratic Progressive Party will win and its leader Tsai Ing-wen will be the first lady to lead the country. Taiwan has taken a long time to formulate democratic principles and perhaps now is the time for the Peoples Republic of China to incorporate some of the structural developments of government that the Republic of China has forged since they were ostracised by their mainland sibling.
‘What is little-known outside the region is that Taiwan is deeply integrated into the Chinese economy. In many ways, Taipei is the new Hong Kong: a command-and-control centre for companies that control billions of dollars of investment and employ tens of millions of people throughout China. Some two million Taiwanese businesspeople live and work in China in high-skilled managerial positions.’