Sunday, 30 December 2012

Why we need to be simple and harsh about coal

Today's Australian has a strange article titled ‘Modern Don Quixote tilts at wind turbines’ which is a strange outline of Hamish Cumming, whom The Australian says:
“doesn’t fit the mould of an anti-environment crusader, climate-change denier or fossil-fuel industry stooge”
because of his interest in organic farming and the protection of brolgas in northern Australia.

What The Australian is saying about Cumming is that he has revealed the subsidies to wind farms have served to reduce the efficiency of coal-fired power stations so that they emit the same quantity of CO2 that they emitted before wind subsidies began. He says that a mockery is made of the carbon-saving ability of wind farms when much coal is burned without producing electricity.

Cumming’s major criticism is the inability of the Australian Energy Market Operator to obtain details for how much CO2 comes out of the exceptionally dirty brown coal-fired power stations of West Gippsland. What is telling is when Cumming notes:
“…when Inquirer asked International Power Australia, owners of the Hazelwood and Loy Yang power stations, for coal-use data it was told “this is a difficult time of the year; I’m afraid we will have to politely decline””
Such a result is very telling about the power of the coal industry in Australia – and it is totally unacceptable that the owners of such environmentally destructive machines should be permitted to get away with it. In fact, it has been telling ever since Australia failed to shut down these power plants when demands in that direction were made some time ago now and highlighted in publications like Green Left Weekly.

There is not doubt that a plan to completely shut down coal-fired power stations in Australia is the most essential step anywhere in the world to combating CO2 emissions. Australia has the highest per-capita emissions in the world and is at extreme risk from the likely loss of its winter-rainfall ecosystems in the south and the potential loss of its breadbasket in the Murray-Darling Basin. The environmental cost of shifting to nations with poorer regulations is minimal as I have outlined in 2009: most nations with poor regulations have neither coal reserves nor reliable hydropower nor the infrastructure to absorb smelting of metals like aluminum.

It is probable that a plan to shut down coal- and other fossil fuel-fired power stations would involve fewer and less expensive regulations than plans based merely on power output restrictions: the simplest laws are always the most efficient and effective if they attack a problem directly. Australia therefore needs a serious plan to phase out coal production and use the land where it stands for seriously needed expansion of its laggardly conservation reserve network.

Saturday, 1 December 2012

Is this wisdom without a clue?

In today’s Australian, the chief of the UN’s climate change section, Christiana Figueres, has said:
“Each one of us needs to assume responsibility. It’s not just about domestic governments”
On the surface, this is a most welcome comment. The trouble is that many people may not know how to assume responsibility, or even who is failing to do this and is responsible for the present increases in greenhouse emissions.

It can very easily be established that Australia is the chief culprit, but the questions is how Australians and non-Australians can counter this urgent problem, and Figueres, like so many abroad, seems to have little idea.

The first issue is how to educate children on the key issues regarding climate change, which are not melting of polar ice caps, sea ice or permafrost, but rather changes in rainfall observed over many hotter regions. Most significant among these are Western Australia and parts of southern South America. In both regions, rainfall has declined dramatically over the west coasts in the subtropics and increased in the same latitudes further east due to the pushing of the subpolar westerlies southwards at a rate of about 18 kilometres per year. This has virtually made Perth’s water storages kaput: since 2001 the average runoff has been only 70 gigalitres per year, or around 20 percent the average from 1900 to 1967. In fact, the total runoff since 2001 has been less than that in July 1946 alone.
The consequences on observed climate changes – a 1 percent decline in rainfall per year over 45 years – would be the loss of almost all endemic species from southwestern Australia by 2050, and similar though less severe changes are possible in parts of South America.

The second issue, once Australia’s unique responsibility for the pollution that causes global warming is established, is how people concerned with Australia can be prepared to make the large sacrifices required to achieve a carbon-free lifestyle. Most Australians have no access to reasonable public transport and may not wish for it, but it is essential that young people in Australia’s suburbs volunteer to:
  1. refuse to use private motorised transport even where alternatives are inconvenient
  2. avoid using mains electricity wherever possible
A voluntary campaign involving education and practical use of these principles both by Australians and tourists – who seldom see beyond the central cities with their relatively usable public transport – is a definite key to solving the climate crisis. Those passionate about this issue – even if not from Australia - must work together to create a volunteer program with the basics outlined above.

Sad to say, people concerned about global warming are not prepared to make the sacrifices to do this even as I was a couple of days ago in Braeside, where there are no pedestrian paths or bike lanes or public transport whatsoever. Combining simple education of young people (maybe during school holidays) with this sort of mass campaign – with links to abroad – is the key to solving the climate crisis by shutting down the suburban Australian machine behind it.

Friday, 30 November 2012

A day in the cheap and nasty land

Today, as I collected a rebound first edition copy of Amy Lowell’s Men, Women and Ghosts – viewed by Piero Scaruffi as her best collection of poetry – I went to check for a few presents for relatives and for a Hawthorn box I had ordered a few weeks ago.

Although I knew Name a Game was relocating from the cramped inner city, I was shocked to know that it was relocating not to Epping, which would have been a convenient train ride from accessible Rushall Station, but to Braeside. Braeside is a remote industrial suburb between the Frankston and Cranbourne railways lines, and when I arrived at Mordialloc Station early on a very humid and warm afternoon, I asked where Urban Street was and none of the people there knew me except someone with an iPhone, and thought that I should try to go back to Mentone and walk down Boundary Road.

When I did this, fining Urban Street proved amazingly tough. The whole area is a large industrial complex along a wide six-land road that could be a freeway but for lacking special exits. it would be tough to cycle in even in better weather, but for walkers Boundary Road is a nightmare: there are no footpaths more than a block beyond Lower Dandenong Road, only overgrown grassy paths which I was able to walk to a number of shops to find Urban Street – and the shopkeepers did not know! I knew it lied a fair way from Lower Dandenong Road, but it was only after a while that I found it was off Malcolm Road halfway from Lower Dandenong Road to Mordialloc.

There is – or is not – a bus route down Boundary Road, whose stops can be seen as one walks along the overgrown grass. This bus – route number seven hundred and five – does not run except on weekdays during the peak hour, with a total of eight services each way. For those like me it is an utterly useless service since it does not run when my routine would permit me to be around – the shop does not even open until well after the last morning bus has gone! In cooler weather I could cycle from Mordialloc or even Dandenong (actually I would cycle in one direction if I did), but I never imagine doing so on a humid 27˚C day.

When I did find Malcolm Road, I saw the 705 bus actually turned down it by looking for the bus stop signs, but being around 14:00 that was of no use since the next bus was not until around 15:50! Once I finally found Urban Street, it was not difficult to see Christian’s wife and ask her about my games (which had come) and my Hawthorn box (which had not). I could not help saying to Elaine why Australia needs a rigid constitutional ban on road building, mandating that every last cent from both public and private sectors is invested in rail. There is simply no other way to reduce Australia’s emissions to the sole acceptable level of zero.

Once I left Name A Game, I felt no choice but to walk all the way to Mordialloc – downhill even though almost flat. By the time I saw the but stop in Governor Road at the edge of the industrial area, I was so tired I waited listening to a few favourite songs on my iPod for the forty minutes to the 709 bus – which with a rigid ban on road building (except bicycle tracks or busways perhaps) could be four minutes or less. Although I was tired and had many headaches, the trip home via Mordialloc, Hampton and the 250 bus route down Rathdowne Street was enjoyable and seeing me was a relief to my busy and potentially ill mother.

It would be a wonderful thing if visitors from the Enriched World had a good look at these industrial suburbs and compared the appalling public transport with the excellent services of Europe and Asia – which Australia’s exceptionally fragile ecology dictates it should surpass in quality because of the extremely high cost of carbon emissions. Foreigners can learn much more Australia by trying to travel on public transport in these suburbs and waiting a whole day for a 705 service – or having to wait an hour for those services that do run outside peak periods – than they can from inner cities with the less poor public transport and internationally focused academic populations. Whether Enriched World visitors see why they tolerate such poor quality services – the abundant space and low living costs – is very dubious.

It is a pity the land is so developed they cannot see Australia’s biodiversity at the same time and how different it stand from the species-poor Enriched World – though I did see a grey butcherbird in the grass and studying it can teach people from the Enriched World a good deal about birds that they would not expect, from female song to cooperative breeding.

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Looking only at one side

A few days ago, the Bleacher Report, which is full of fascinating lists relating to sports, published a list titled “The 20 Rarest Sights in Sports”. The list was:
  1. “Winning the Heisman Trophy Twice”
  2. “NBA quadruple-double”
  3. “An Unassisted Triple Play”
  4. “Repeating as Olympic 100 metres Champion”
  5. “Winning Four Consecutive Golf Majors”
    • done only by Tiger Woods, Bobby Jones in 1930 and Young Tom Morris in 1872
  6. “Major League Baseball Batting Triple Crown”
  7. “U.S. Men’s Soccer Team Beats Mexico in Mexico”
  8. “Decade(s)-Long Droughts”
    • This is the one case which is not a “positive” rarity
    • Long droughts are familiar to many football and even rugby (Cronulla) fans in Australia, though none rival the Chicago Cubs’ World Series drought
  9. “Olympic Gold and Stanley Cup in the Same Year”
  10. “Triple Crown (Horse Category)”
  11. “Major League Baseball Perfect Games”
  12. “A Perfect Season”
  13. “Never Missing an NFL Game”
  14. “NBA 60-Point Game”
  15. “Pittsburgh Steelers Changing Head Coaches”
  16. “Hitting 600 Home Runs”
  17. “A City Winning Multiple Championships in One Year”
  18. “The Oakland Raiders Hitting on a #1 Draft Pick”
  19. “Major League Baseball No-Hitters”
    • the comment says that:
      “Verducci makes the case that the steroid era greatly impacted decades of pitching, and now that baseball has worked to eradicate them from the game, pitchers are once again king. If that's the case, we might have to reassess this slide in a few years.”
  20. “Three-Peats”
    • the comment says that they were common before the 2000s but there have been none since 2003.
    • There have been only four in Major League Baseball since 1901, three by the New York Yankees and one by the Oakland Athletics
What is problematic about this list is that only one side is shown: the best feats, and not the worst. Having the experience of football and rugby statistics that I do, I wonder why things like:
  • “A Perfectly Bad Season”
  • “A full game with no possessions”
  • “A goalless football team”
  • “Not reaching an opponent’s Quarter” (in rugby)
  • “A walk to second base” (I’ve never seen or read about it; would happen if four balls occurred and first base was occupied)
The Bleacher Report is slightly exaggerating when it says that there are too many games in most sports for a perfectly bad season. Apart from baseball, ice hockey, soccer and basketball, few sports actually play many more games than football or rugby.

However, both perfectly bad seasons and goalless matches have far more near-misses that actual occurrences (like Swan Districts in 1968 or Melbourne in 1981 for perfectly bad seasons; Carlton in 1991 and East Perth in 1956 for goalless matches). The fact that near-misses are much more common than actual occurrences of most rare sights in sport makes me think people should be aware of the many potential lessons from such horrific experiences as Sturt in 1995 losing every game by at least four goals, or the experiences of Hawthorn and North Melbourne in their early years in the VFL when one or the other failed to win a game three times in their first seven years. The league was too easily swayed by the interests of clubs rather than culture and fundamental economics.

The near-miss of a goalless game by West Coast in 1992 at the Western Oval is instructive, especially when compared to the Eagles’ amazing dominance in bone dry April and May 1991. During that period, they conceded only 59 points per game to teams that scored 118 against all other defences. However, their super-hard defence lost its edge on such a slow ground and their great speed became a liability.

A full game with no possessions I have only heard of a few times from full forwards, notably Scott Hodges at Moorabbin in 1991 and in the 1996 SANFL Grand Final. A rugby team not reaching an opponent’s quarter I have never checked for or seen - it would not necessarily be a shutout because a team could still kick a penalty goal. It would indeed by almost impossible under present-day rules with the 40/20 kick.

Friday, 16 November 2012

Testing my memory of adolescence

As I googled recently for lists of best albums to see what has changed since I discovered Joe S. Harrington a decade ago, I surprisingly found a list of “forgotten singles from the 1990s” by a site called Faster♥Louder that made me think of my adolescence.

The list is below. Songs italicised are those I can recall from the time. “Steal My Sunshine” was after I was ever listening to contemporary hits radio, but apart form one song which despite its ubiquity in the 1990s press I never heard only the middle and late 1990s are represented here.

Perhaps this is fair enough because the early 1990s was the heart of the most radical popular culture of all time, and few singles were simply memories even in Melbourne’s suburbs. Major pop artists from early 1990s Australia were well-established at the tail end of the 1980s
  1. Bran Van 3000: “Drinking in LA” (1997)
  2. Len: “Steal My Sunshine” (1999)
  3. The Caulfields: “Devil’s Diary” (1995)
  4. Not From There: “Sich Öffnen” (1998)
  5. Ammonia: “Drugs” (1995)
  6. Primitive Radio Gods: “Standing Outside a Broken Phone Booth with Money in My Hand” (1996)
  7. Violetine: “You Know” (1998)
  8. Tokyo Ghetto Pussy: “I Kiss Your Lips” (1995)
  9. Fastball: “The Way” (1998)
  10. Spacehog: “In the Meantime” (1996)
  11. The Refreshments: “Banditos” (1996)
  12. Coppertone: “Fini Scad” (1995)
  13. Geggy Tah: “Whoever You Are” (1996)
  14. Sneaker Pimps: “Six Underground” (1996)
  15. Luscious Jackson: “Naked Eye” (1996)
  16. Money Mark: “Hand in Your Head” (1998)
  17. Fountains of Wayne: “Radiation Vibe” (1996)
  18. Strawpeople: “Trick With a Knife” (1995)
  19. Lit: “My Own Worst Enemy” (1999)
  20. Finley Quaye: “Even After All” (1997)
  21. Beaverloop: “Bad Acid … Jazz!” (1998)
  22. Local H: “Bound for the Floor” (1996)
  23. Antenna: “Come in Spring” (1998)
  24. Jill Sobule: “I Kissed a Girl” (1995)
  25. Tripping Daisy: “I Got a Girl” (1995)
  26. Francis Dunnery: “American Life in the Summertime” (1994)
  27. The Murmurs: “You (expletive)” (1994) 
  28. Space: “Female of the Species” (1996)
  29. Definition Of Sound: “Pass the Vibes” (1995)
  30. Max Sharam: “Coma” (1994)
  31. Days of the New: “Touch, Peel and Stand” (1998)
  32. Pollyanna: “Effervescence” (1997)
  33. Lucas: “Lucas with the Lid Off” (1994)
  34. Fool’s Garden: “Lemon Tree” (1995)
  35. K’s Choice: “Not an Addict” (1996)
  36. Smoke City: “Underwater Love” (1997)
  37. PM Dawn: “Set Adrift on Memory Bliss” (1991)
  38. The Rentals: “Friends of P” (1995)
  39. Imani Coppola: “Legend of a Cowgirl” (1997)
  40. Bentley Rhythm Ace: “Bentley’s Gonna Sort You Out” (1997)
Of these “Coma” is the only memory that might be remotely called “fond” and in 2013 it does not sound that bad, especially in an earlier acoustic version that takes away the pomp of the “I’m coming around” section. “Drugs” is just awful generic punk pop, and “I Kissed a Girl” worse. “American Life in the Summertime” illustrated how bad the influence of rap could become when placed in 1980s synthesised pop.

All in all, it shows that I remember rather little of my adolescent years, in part because the radio stations I was used to (like the FOX) were becoming “classic rock” stations as rap and grunge took over the rest of the world and they feared going along. So did I, and rightly so I think!

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Is this a breakthrough for rhinoceroses?

According to the British Broadcasting Corporation, South Africa has found a kingpin smuggler of rhino horn in Thai Chumlong Lemtongthai, and wants to sentence him to forty years jail for illegally obtaining hunting permits. Forty years jail is a very severe penalty - from what I have recently read about murder and manslaughter it is more severe than any legal penalty for manslaughter and even for some forms of murder. On the other hand, like Australia, South Africa has unique duties in terms of environmental protection since South Africa is:
  1. overall the seventh most biologically diverse country in the world
  2. easily the most biologically diverse country without tropical rainforests or coral reefs, having twice the number of species of any other
  3. an exceptionally fragile land with extremely old soils and an average runoff ratio of less than 10 percent, making its water systems exceedingly sensitive
  4. features frequent occurrences of many presently rare and little studied ecological phenomena such as cooperative breeding, unusually low metabolic rates and daily heterothermy
For this reason, punishments for wildlife killing in South Africa have a right to be much more severe than in either the humid tropics or the northern and western hemispheres (the latter of which for ecological purposes includes New Zealand). In fact, given the important ecological role of megafauna like rhinoceroses in reducing the leaching of the very old soils of southern Africa, it is fair to punish people who obtain illegal licences to hunt them with something as severe as forty years - or perhaps even life - imprisonment.

Such killing is ecocide in a way killing in the northern or western hemispheres never can be, so a due punishment stands very different from what people used only to dealing with illegal killing in those sections of the globe would expect. If such punishments were consistent in southern Africa, then rhinoceros poaching would be something few would dare to engage in and rhinoceroses would have a chance of survival.

Monday, 5 November 2012

Obama: conspiracies or real fears?

A couple of days ago, the left-wing publication Mother Jones published a list of the major conspiracy theories about Barack Obama, many of which are patently absurd, and divided them into five groups:
  1. Obama is a Muslim
  2. Obama was born in Kenya
  3. Obama is a radical leftist
  4. Obama is a power-mad dictator
  5. Obama is a sham
These theories, for the most part, are quite familiar to me after years of reading books like the Politically Incorrect Guides. The theories that Obama is a Muslim are ridiculous, although it may be true that he is far harder on Christianity than on Islam in his policy because Islam is not as concerned with natural law. However, Sharica law is so much at variance with what Obama and the Democratic Party aim to do that at best, the Democratic Party and Islam are “strange bedfellows” who unite loosely only because they have the same enemy in traditional Christianity. It is true that his stepfather Lolo Soetoro is a Muslim, but Obama was a UCC member until 2008.

The second and fifth theories are so ridiculous I will not spend much time on them, even if the detailed research that has gone into Obama since he became President does not exclude the fact that his father Barack senior was part of the anti-colonial movement in East Africa. Obama was born in Hawaii but grew up in Seattle and Indonesia and ultimately finished at Columbia University in New York. He never lived in Africa.

The fourth theory is also ridiculous. Even if Obama does want to restrict religious freedom (which moderates and liberals will deny), he is not deliberately faking such ideas.

The notion that Obama is a radical leftist who wants to transform the United States into a state resembling the struggling welfare states of Eurasia, Canada and New Zealand has more substance. By their nature of having glaciers and orogeny destroy lithophile minerals, Enriched World lands have a small potential tax base, and thus are likely to suffer a great deal from high taxes. Thus, the large welfare state Obama has tried to build is likely to become a financial liability and calls for its reform are reasonable. However, as the picture above shows, Obama haters do go much further than reason even here. Most especially, I have never heard in his four years as President that he wants to give US islands to Russia: and in an industrial society the only islands somebody could conceivably talk about in these terms - the Aleutian Islands - contain nothing of economic value whatsoever.

Thursday, 1 November 2012

Pluto (and aspects to Neptune) in the 21st and 22nd centuries

Despite its demotion from planetary status six years ago, Pluto is still a fascinating object astronomically and astrologically.

In the period since Pluto was discovered in 1930, it has moved into (February 7, 1979) and outside (February 11, 1999) the outermost planet Neptune. As a consequence, a continuous waxing sextile, or aspect of 60˚ in geocentric longitude, has been created which will last until Pluto enters Aquarius in 2023 - after which it moves further from the Sun and Neptune easily overtakes it. However, because of Pluto’s inclined orbit, during its perihelion Pluto does not come within seventeen astronomical units of Neptune.

In this post, I will look at the aspects Pluto will form with Neptune between the end of the current sextile and the approach of its next perihelion in the twenty-third century, along with all the sign changes. The actual perihelion will occur in 2237, but its effects will be felt as early as Pluto’s entry to Virgo in 2202. This twenty-third century perihelion will be under a continuous waning trine, or aspect of 240˚.

Because of Western Australia’s central role in the postindustrial economy with its limitless supply of lithophile metals, charts have been cast for Perth, the capital of WA. (Transforming to another locality is not hard: you just adjust the time to the required local standard time).

Entering ♒︎ in 2023:

In this chart for ♇’s first entry into ♒︎ in 2023, we see a stellium in the sixth house of work – rather at odds with a sign noted for its mental nature and rarely physically active. A New Moon in ♈︎ occurs a few days before ♇ is first in ♒︎, and in the chart for the initial ingress the predominance of active fire signs suggests perhaps that ♇ in ♒︎ may come with a great deal of political problems, especially if Eurasia, the Americas and New Zealand face continual declines in the ability to pay for their welfare states.

Entering ♓︎ in 2043:

By the time ♇ enters ♓︎ in 2043, it will be very hard to tell what the world will be like, though one can fear immigration and overpopulation in Australia as high taxes in the Enriched World drive workers and business away from a welfare-dependent, militantly atheistic and hyper-selfish remnant whose only remaining potential income source is tourism. The last period of ♇ in ♓︎ was from 1798 to 1822, and was known as the “Transcendental Generation”, which founded Mormonism and Romantic literature in its quest for new spiritual ideals. The previous in the 1550s and 1560s saw Marlowe and Shakespeare along with the last era before the first “atheist” philosophers were born. This was an uncertain generation affected by an amazingly close grand cross in mutable signs between ♄ in ♍︎, ♅ in ♐︎, ♆ in ♊︎ and ♇.

The high sun in this chart for ♇’s first entry into ♓︎ may symbolise the death either of:
  1. the extremely diverse flora of southwestern Australia as Perth’s climate becomes a cyclone-dominated desert historically associated with the Pilbara or
  2. the peak of militant atheist culture in the mineral-poor, big-government Enriched World as its governments cannot pay off the welfare states forced on them by the working masses up to eight generations ago. This would mean that the Enriched World simply declines into insignificance after the 2040s as its governments can do little to keep its economy going against extreme levels of old-age dependency.

Waxing Quintile, middle 2040s:

After the end of the 1940 to 2030 sextile, the next aspect between ♆ and ♇ will be the waxing quintile, a minor aspect of 72˚ signifying creativity. The waxing quintile will be in orb from about 2043, when ♇ remains in ♒︎, to 2048, though ♆ will be in ♉︎ throughout. The previous waxing quintile occurred from 1551 to 1554 and coincided with the Counter-Reformation and the growth of Protestant states north of the Alps, along with the Mennonites in Germany. It also saw conflicts in the Counter-Reformation between those popes who wanted to continue the artistic patronage of the Renaissance and such extremely austere men as Saint Pius V who wanted to eliminate these. As would be expected with a quintile, however, these conflicting needs were met adequately for the survival of the Church in southern Europe.

Waxing Square, 2063:

After the waxing quintile comes the waxing square, a conflicting aspect of 90˚ between spiritual ♓︎ and worldly, shallow ♊︎. (The last few squares and all later waxing squares from the twenty-sixth century, will have ♆ in ♋︎ and ♇ in ♈︎). The last waxing square around 1570 saw the full-time break of the Protestant nations with Rome, not to be even partially dealt with until the Emancipation Act of 1829. It also saw the growth of Puritanism under the previously noted grand cross. The next waxing square may see the complete break of Australia and Africa from the rest of the world. Welfare dependency and the impossibility of free-market based reform in the Enriched and even the Tropical World could well be viewed suspiciously by the few nations with enough “dirt” to retain affordable housing and families.

The fiery chart observed suggests there may be problems – quite likely to be environmental ones – from the end of the Mediterranean climates and the spread of drought/flood tropical conditions with their frequent fires and extreme heat.

Entering ♈︎ in 2066:

After the waxing square, ♇ enters ♈︎ for a stay of almost thirty years. It is notable that ♇ is never in the actual constellation of Aries. Instead, it moves into the more southerly constellation of Cetus at its aphelion and then moves into Taurus as it slowly journeys away from aphelion.

Previous periods of ♇ in the zodiacal longitudes of ♈︎ have coincided with the development of very new philosophies. René Descartes and Thomas Hobbes in the 1580s and 1590s, along with Häckel and Nietzsche in the 1830s and 1840s were born with ♇ in ♈︎. It will be interesting to see what these years bring, and impossible to tell now. Will Australia, likely to be separated from international organisations and affected by radical climate change, at last encounter the revolutionary political pressures that have dominated in the Enriched World since the French Revolution?? Will new political ideas emerge in Australia or Africa??

Waxing Trine, 2089:

As ♇ becomes more distant from the Sun, aspects to ♆ come more frequently, with the waxing trine, a benefic aspect of 120˚, appearing in 2089. It is not possible to say what the waxing trine will bring, but the 2080s, besides being a rare “prime decade” with four prime years, will see a number of cases where all planets are in fire or air, and a triple conjunction of ♃, ♄ and ♅ for the first time in 140 years in ♒︎. The previous ♃—♄—♅ triple conjunction occurred in 1762 in ♈︎ and before that in 1623 in ♌︎, coinciding with the last waxing quincunx of ♆ and ♇ several years after the July 1618 aphelion. The chart here suggests that Australia, now likely to be the centre of the world economy, will be hidden from view of the nihilistic Enriched World with the Sun in the Second House.

Entering ♉︎ in 2096:

♇ enters ♉︎ in 2096 after its long stay in ♈︎. ♉︎ is the sign of ♇’s detriment owing to its placid, relaxed, low-energy nature, and is also the sign at which ♇ has its aphelion, or furthest point from the Sun, last reached in early June of 1866. Past periods of ♇ in ♉︎ have manifested themselves in generations which place practical living above vested political interests, as with the “Missionary Generation” that gradually undid the political and economic system of nineteenth-century colonial Europe, and before that the “Levellers” in England who revolted against King Charles. If the Enriched World’s tiny number of young people find they can do nothing within the established political order, they could well try to override it if they do not move to Australia or somewhere similar.

  Waxing Sesquiquadrate, 2102:

As ♇ moves very close to aphelion, aspects come and go more quickly, with a waxing sesquiquadrate, a malefic aspect of 135˚, occurring in 2102. The sesquiquadrate, or trioctile, indicates subtle tension, since it often occurs between signs that are of the same element and would normally work well together. This will be the case with the waxing sesquiquadrate of 2101, although previous waxing sesquiquadrates in 1607 and 1112 were between the unrelated signs of ♍︎ and ♈︎. Previous waxing sesquiquadrates have symbolised crises in the old order, seen in East Asia in the early seventeenth century and in Europe’s religious systems in the twelfth, which were countered by new religious orders. The rising sun in this chart may symbolise a new beginning – maybe humanity will adapt to an oppressive climate and rapid soil leaching via evolution??

Waxing Biquintile, 2108:

After the waxing sesquiquadrate come the waxing biquintile, which is twice a quintile at 144˚. Biquintiles symbolise creativity and merging together disparate influences, since most occur in the same pairs of signs as quincunxes. Quincunxes and semisextiles are sometimes mistaken for biquintiles by astrologers who ignore fifth harmonic aspects. An example can be seen in the Professional Natal Report. Following on from the waxing sesquiquadrate, the waxing biquintile aims to reintegrate the tensions of the preceding aspect, as came from the foundation of religious orders like the Franciscans in the twelfth century and sects like the Puritans later.

Aphelion and Waxing Quincunx, 2113 to 2114:

Very soon after the reintegration of the biquintile comes the waxing quincunx. This is an aspect between two totally unrelated signs of 150˚ that causes tension because the two planets cannot work together even though they are not directly opposing each other as with a square.

Long-lived quincunxes between generational planets are less painful than shorter-lived quincunxes between personal planets, because in most cases the individual will simply express one sign only.

The waxing ♆/♇ quincunx follows very closely the aphelion of ♇, and sets the scene for the “climax” of the cycle at the opposition. Astrologers never note ♇’s aphelion, and even in astronomy it warrants little discussion. What author Eric Meece on pages 122 to 127 of Horoscope for the New Millennium, calls the “lowest periods of civilisation” tend to coincide with ♇ aphelia – though invariably those aphelia at waning semisextiles to ♆ (i.e. 381, 876, 1371, 1866, 2361), not aphelia at waxing quincunxes (1122, 1618, 2113 etc.).

Later Aspects and Sign Changes to ♍︎ entry, 2114 to 2202

Originally I intended to document all major ♇ aspects to Neptune throughout the twenty-second century, but I have decided this was too difficult and I have attached a diagram of the:
  1. first entry into ♊︎ in 2127
  2. opposition in 2139
  3. first reentry into ♋︎ (the sign in which ♇ was discovered) in 2157
  4. waning quincunx (coinciding with a conjunction of ♅ and ♆) in 2164
  5. waning biquintile in 2171
  6. waning sesquiquadrate in 2179
  7. first entry into ♌︎ in 2183
  8. first entry into ♍︎ in 2202
At this stage, one can see clearly the waning trine that will be virtually continuous throughout the twenty-third century as it was during the eighteenth. I get recollections of Julius Goodman’s Space Patrol, the twenty-second Choose Your Own Adventure book and set during this next waning trine, every time I think about this.

Monday, 29 October 2012

A Merlin report summary

Ever since I first saw astrology websites, I have looked to the Merlin Report as a means of looking at what astrology supposes people to be like - and always laughing hilariously whether it’s true or not!

One of the interesting features - in an odd way prophetic since demoted Pluto was never included - is that when certain planets conjunction a certain Ascendant, the delineation is revised because the original delineation for the conjunction is inappropriate, as with a Gemini Moon conjunct Ascendant. (It also sometime happens that an out-of-sign conjunction will alter the standard report).

The following table shows where the “normal” delineation is altered for each Ascendant (first column). Red cases indicate it is, green indicates it is not, and yellow indicates doubt (with Sun conjunct Ascendant in  I have often imagined it would have a special delineation but what I have seen may contradict this though the report may have been different or taken as I do from the web).

Another thing is that when a planet aspects certain pairs of planets, there is an additional delineation (Sun aspects A and B). This never occurs when a planet aspects Pluto in addition to another planet, nor when Jupiter or Saturn aspects more than one planet further out. Thus, we can limit this second Merlin Report summary table to planets from the Sun to Mars aspecting planets from the Moon to Neptune. In fact, there are none of these delineations relating to an aspect between the Sun and Moon in the Merlin Report, but I have included it for completeness.





What is clear here is that it is primarily aspects to Jupiter (representing growth) and Saturn (limitations) along with those between Saturn and Uranus (originality) that are noted by Merlin.

These two tables should help understand astrological reports for those who do not.