Part 08 The hype and hope of the Obama Presidency
Dennis Sutton February 2009

During the Great Depression people needed cheering up so Hollywood invented razzle-dazzle. Now Washington is doing it better. The emotional hype that accompanied Barack Obama's election win on November 4, 2008 was simply breathtaking: And the President, as a celebrity politician, has become a well rehearsed, well choreographed television performer. Hollywood razzles when genuine talent is lacking - the dazzle is deliberately employed to nullify your critical faculties - and the presidential razzle seemed to overshadow the seriousness of the economic situation. A very unexpected turn of events had caused an economic earthquake: And the resulting avalanche of bad economic news made very grim reading. The American economy was falling over. Uranus, the planet of unforeseen events, had made an unexpected appearance on the world-stage and, with some perfectly timed shock and rock, stole the show.

The Hermetic viewpoint proposes that the events attracted into the life are the result of character acting on and responding to environment. Character is the active agent and the discordant 'problem' events are the result of defective character traits - bad attitudes, faulty behaviours and misguided impulses. Character not only attracts the event it sources a solution. The event stimulates effort and builds character and the problem is only overcome, and solved, when the defective character trait is changed. And Barack Obama was elected on a platform of change.

There's low-level superficial change and deep-level profound change and in 2008 the US administration changed from a Republican ideology to the Democrat way of doing things. These two political ideologies represent two different ways of viewing life and each perceives, evaluates and solves the same problem differently. The big change was in the color of the President's skin, but beneath the skin is the character - the dynamic agent that attracts events and sources solutions. The US has changed her political course (for the next four years) but profound change will only occur when she changes the misguided financial and other behaviours that caused the economic crisis in the first place.

One thing is for certain, Barack Obama wasn't expecting this economic mess when he announced his intention to run for President on January 10, 2007. In the end he may wish that he'd never applied for the job. As his inauguration day approached he warned of dire economic times ahead - but what did his words mean?

The grimness of the economic situation is an unknown quantity. Some economic forecasters are making very dire predictions. The accuracy of their prophecies depends upon their expertise when reading the signs. The astrologer has a different type of expertise. S/he understands the astrological environment - and has low level understanding of how the economy really works. Accurate forecasting requires a clear understanding of both environments and this means that the economic expert, lacking astrological expertise, and the astrologer, lacking economic expertise, are both handicapped. The astrologer knows that the signs in the sky during 2009 and 2010 are not your average set of astrological events. The current economic and astrological environments present a whole new ballgame - and this means that 'rear-vision' thinking won't provide many answers. History never repeats - the difference is in the detail: And while some astrological events do recur quite regularly, others are not so frequent, and a cluster of six (6) irregular and exceptional aspects, all occurring at the same time, is a very rare - maybe a one in a 100 year - astrological event.

Drastic economic conditions require quick and decisive action and Barack Obama started his presidency by introducing a huge economic stimulus package - infrastructure spending on roads, rail, bridges and schools - that was designed to get America back to work: But a better educated electorate is now expecting a little bit more from their President. How the problem is solved is becoming an important issue and George W Bush proved you can bung it up by adopting a misguided solution. The electorate expects problems to be solved in a certain way and if the President deviates too far from public opinion he'll be in strife. The electorate wants effective economic management, economic and financial stability, law and order and safety and if Obama delivers he'll be a successful President. If he doesn't he'll go down in history as a failed President.

In the Sun section of the Aquarian Age politics is the main game, but during the Pluto period it's become a very murky, corrupt and secretive business. Uranus is the planet of democracy. He demands government by the people for the people. Pluto reverses this situation. He sponsors totalitarian governments and makes the state supreme. Individual liberty and human rights are made subservient to the demands of the state. People have the right to work and financial independence - and unemployment is the big fear. The middle classes will suffer the most during this economic downturn (Saturn) and as their level of financial hardship increases so will the level of social unrest (Uranus): And with Uranus, Pluto and Mars in Obama's 7th house (the international arena) the US administration will be preoccupied with what's happening in the other country. These planets mark for dangerous developments, widespread unrest, drastic events, strained relations and aggressive/extreme/drastic action by enemies and opponents. Being the planet of the unexpected Uranus is very hard to predict but you can count on social unrest and high-level discontent with the ruling authority.

Maybe the need for a strong Sun in the President's birthchart has diminished as he's become more of a front man for a party machine that obviously pulls the strings. The economic and financial expertise needed to deal with the current economic crisis will come from his advisors - the 11th house and Jupiter - and his employees - the 6th house. The President may make the final decision, but before it's made he'll be led and guided by the experts he appointed. Which raises the question of just how much leading does the President do when it comes to policy formation? Maybe the boys in the back room wield all the power and the President does as he's told: And with everyone having a Democrat bias it's safe to say that no one will stray too far from the party's ideology and way of doing things. The question is: can they get it right?

The wheels of time move slowly and overcoming the economic crisis, which hit with cataclysmic suddenness, will take much longer. And when the hype and hope fades into grim economic reality there may be one or two shattered dreamers. Only time will tell if the man who represents astonishing change can fix the economic and other problems.