Weekly Update » February 26 - March 04, 2009
(212) 539-3100 :: shelley@karmicrelief.com   
Archive | Weekly Update | Weekly Horoscope | AstroFacts

Mercury Conjoins Mars,
Venus in Aries Grinds to a Halt,
Liz Smith is FIRED-Up!

By Shelley L. Ackerman
[From my 'Shimmering Stars' column in The Westchester Guardian, © 2009]

Photo: Rich Press

Newspapers Folding, TV Networks Faltering, and Liz Smith Axed by the NY Post

Last week, we looked at Rupert Murdoch’s horoscope because of the NY Post's vicious Sean Delanos cartoon that was in the news. This week, the same daily tabloid made headlines all over the world - in online, television, and print media because editor-in-chief Col Allan fired iconic Gossip Queen Liz Smith in a letter stating that her meager $125K a year contract would not be renewed due to economic constraints. There’s more to it than that: Smith represents culture, class, history, and combines gossip with intelligent philosophy, reverence, and even respect better than anyone. She never forgets that it’s a human being that she’s writing about. Her high-minded approach is the antithesis of what the NY Post stands for. What’s strange is that this upheaval took place just as transiting Jupiter was on Liz Smith’s Aquarius Sun. Jupiter usually brings expansion and good luck, not a dismissal. Smith was ALL OVER the news and is at the receiving end of recognition, kudos, and love from just about everyone who knows her.

Liz Smith

Liz Smith will continue to appear on Fox News’ Lips and Ears, write for Daily Variety, her Wow website, The Drudge Report, Parade Magazine, and is still syndicated in 70 or so newspapers in the country. I wish the NY Times would get over itself and bring Liz on board for their very first daily quality gossip column. Truth be told, the column is more of a social diary than anything else. With Jupiter on her Sun and sextile to her Venus (at 26 Sagittarius), and trining her exalted Saturn (at 20 Libra) for most of 2009, watch Liz emerge bigger, better, and stronger than ever. Not bad for 86.

As for Col Allan: The NAACP is pushing to have him and the offending cartoonist Sean Delanos fired.

And the drama at the NY Post is just part of the ever unfolding cycle of destruction of the dailies. Who’d a thunk that the second that Pluto went into Capricorn that so many businesses would fail on cue? In the past week, two major dailies, The San Francisco Chronicle and The Philadelphia Inquirer announced plans to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, and on Friday, the 150 year-old Rocky Mountain News in Denver published its last edition. It’s tragic.

Just last May, the Rocky Mountain News did astrology proud in beautifully covering the UAC convention in Denver with several articles. It was truly a gorgeous newspaper. The major television networks are not faring any better either. Television as we know it (as a staple in the home of the masses), is in its second Saturn-return now and its fighting for it's life. Here, the NY Times reports on Network TV’s struggle to stay viable. Both television and newspapers (and books for that matter) are suffering at the hand of the Internet and other forms of electronic instant communication.

Leonard Abess Jr.

For CEO Banker “Leonard the Lion” Abess Jr. and his Employees, It’s a Wonderful Life

The antithesis of Bernard Madoff is alive and well and living in Florida. One Leonard Abess Jr. admirably and ethically ran his City National Bank in Florida. When he recently sold it to a hand-picked group he knew would uphold his values, he shared his $60 million dollar paycheck with 399 current and 72 past employees. In sharp contrast to so many horror stories of selfish CEO behavior out there now, his civility and generosity, are a reminder of what’s possible. He has been cited by President Obama and all over as a model human being and leader. Here he is featured on ABC News as Person of the Week. Abess, a Leo born on July 23, 1948 thinks that others should do the same: "We're not there for a big profit, you know, we're not there for our egos," Abess said. "We're there to serve this community. We are there as a sacred trust for people, so we are very careful. We lend money to people we know. We lend for the right reasons. We don't make loans to do things that aren't good for community".

Take-off Time of 9:19 PM on Feb 12: A Factor in Flight 3407 Disaster?

One of my least favorite assignments as an astrologer is to work with my clients to select flights/departure times for trips. The enormity of that responsibility is pretty severe. Don’t get me wrong; While astrology is extremely useful for that and I certainly refer to it when selecting timing of trips for myself, when it comes down to it, so much is beyond our ultimate control. To compensate for the lack of predictability of the airlines, I choose a time to leave my home for every trip and run it by my friend, astrologer Liane Thomas Wade to make sure I’m not hallucinating (that’s a joke). After all, one could argue that the journey begins when you walk out your door with your suitcase.

On February 12, 2009, flight 3407 was scheduled to depart at 7:10 pm from Newark, New Jersey. Weather and other delays made it so that the flight took off two hours and nine minutes later.

Traditional astrology gave few cues as to what went wrong. But when working with “Uranian Astrology”, the picture for disaster was clear. Uranian astrology uses eight invisible “trans-Neptunian” points. This school of thought was implemented in the years following WWI in Germany, and became known as The Hamburg School of Astrology. It is far more complicated and much more cut and dried than its traditional counterpart, and while it’s generally too fatalistic for my taste, the stuff works like clockwork and scarily so.

At 9:19 pm, the points ‘Vulkanus’ and ‘Hades’ were, according to the 90 degree dial used in the Uranian system, right on the ascendant. That formula equals “demonic force” and “dangerous surroundings” and waiting a few minutes for take-off would have changes that.

I know we are years away from convincing FAA authorities to have an astrologer present in the control tower and that’s a shame. Astrology is an intuitive art and when practiced skillfully it can save many lives. In the meantime, fixed-star expert, astrologer Diana Rosenberg has a veritable laundry list of valuable astrological insights that can and should be applied to travel charts.

Chart: Mercury - Mars Conjunction
Click for larger view

The Planets This Week: All times EST.

Feb 26: Moon in Pisces V/C @ 1:09 am, enters Aries @ 4:24 pm
Feb 28: Moon V/C @ 12:52 pm, enters Taurus @ 10:33 pm
March 1: Mercury conjunct Mars @ 10:06 pm
March 2: Moon V/C @ 5:43 pm
March 3: Moon enters Gemini @ 2:53 am
March 4: Moon square Sun (1st Quarter) @ 2:46 am, V/C @ 9:11 pm

*Moon v/c = ‘void of course’, Best for spiritual not earthly pursuits

Bonus: 2009 Astro Crib Sheet

Major Planetary Activity for 2009.

Mercury begins 09 @ 0˚Aquarius07’ & ends 2009 @ 19˚Capricorn29’ Rx
Mercury Retrogrades 2009:
Jan 11-Feb 1, May 6-30, Sept 6-29, & Dec 26-Jan 15, 2010
Venus begins 2009 @ 27˚Aquarius48’ and ends 2009 @ 7˚Capricorn13’
Venus Retrograde: March 6-April 17, 2009
Mars begins 2009 @ 3˚Capricorn57’ and ends 2009 @ 18˚Leo54’ (Retro)
Mars turns retrograde on December 20th (thru March 10, 2010)
Jupiter begins 2009 @ 29˚Capricorn02’ and ends 2009 @ 26˚Aquarius15’
Jupiter enters Aquarius on January 5, 2009
Jupiter Retrograde: June 15-Oct 13, 2009
Saturn begins 2009 @ 21˚Virgo46’ Retrograde and ends 2009 @ 4˚Libra30’
Saturn Retrograde: Dec 31, 2008-May 16, 2009
Saturn enters Libra on Oct 29, 2009 (will retrograde back into Virgo in 2010)
Uranus begins 2009 @ 19˚Pisces15’ and ends @ 23˚Pisces05’
Uranus Retrograde: July 1-December 1, 2009
Neptune begins 2009 @ 22˚Aquarius27’ and ends 2009 @ 24˚Aquarius34’
Neptune Retrograde: May 28-November 4, 2009
Pluto begins 2009 @ 1˚Capricorn16’ and ends 2009 @ 3˚Capricorn17’
Pluto Retrograde: April 4-September 11, 2009

Weekly Horoscope

ARIES: The emphasis on group activities and team work that focuses on future plans and policies continues this week and is both highlighted and energized by the merger of Mars, your ruling planet, with Mercury, the planet of motion and communication. But Saturn’s conservative influence in your 6th house of work and health is a constant reminder to hold your horses, reign in expenses, and err on the side of caution and prudence at every turn. We’re all on a diet these days, and portion-control is the way to go.

TAURUS: The key to your professional advancement and ultimate career fulfillment may in fact lie in your willing- ness to go back to the drawing board and refine your artistic and creative skills to support a dream you’ve had your entire life. When all is said and done, there’s no sense in continuing to invest your being in pursuits that you are lukewarm about. Survival is one thing, but it’s time to get on board with what your soul’s been aching for.

GEMINI: Though Saturn is still cracking his whip on the home front, and will continue to sustain the nagging tied-down feeling and accompanying set of responsibilities you’d rather dump on the nearest taker, there is a benefit to coping with the drudgery aspect of it all and seeing this cycle to completion. If you can possibly swing it, now would be the perfect time to put yourself in an academic environment and expand your horizons. The people you’d meet would make it all so worth while.

CANCER: You’re the very embodiment of the new stimulus package and are therefore needed to show us how to make it work. The sign of Cancer doesn’t like to leave its comfort zone, but when your survival is threatened, you Moon-Children sprint into action like nobody’s business. Now is the time to go on a diet and cut out just about everything that you no longer need. One important consideration is your interdependence with a sibling or neighbor. Keep the lines of communication open with them.

LEO: This is one time that listening to a partner and taking in what they have to say regarding your financial future is a very good idea. By nature you’re generous and optimistic, and while there’s no reason to forfeit any of that good stuff forever, you need to adopt a worst-case/Plan “B” scenario approach for the next few weeks, just in case. Chances are, you won’t need to live by these restrictions for long. Think of it as a short-term insurance policy.

VIRGO: Despite the merciless pressure of Saturn retrograde in your sign, and against all odds, you’re quite the Energizer Bunny these days, especially when focused on the pile of papers on your desk. And this weekend, your ruling planet, Mercury, conjoins action-oriented Mars to amp up the volume and make you that much more efficient and precise in whatever you choose to do. However, your words are as powerful as lasers so monitor those impulses to criticize anyone within range. On the other hand, if used with heart and wisdom, your sharpness could save the day.

LIBRA: Contrarian that you are, while the rest of the word is pulling in, you feel like expanding and taking risks that appear to be insane by current standards. And while some of them may be, not all are. On March 3rd and 4th, go for it. Just remember that you can bet with more than dollars-meaning think of your talent and ingenuity as a commodity. You’re in a place to make a creative leap-of-faith pay off big time. Don’t let this wave of good fortune pass you by.

SCORPIO: Balancing the gi-normous waves of activity in both home and work environments successfully depends on how well you choose those to support you and the skill with which you delegate specific tasks. But when all is said and done, you cannot completely control how each individual tackles their assignment, or know for sure what each person has on their plate. So for the next few days, deduct a good 20% from your expectations and you won’t be disappointed.

SAGITTARIUS: No matter what your chronological age is, you’ll be looked upon as an elder statesman whose wisdom is desperately needed at this point. The funny thing is, is that you will enjoy flexing your stodgy and more conservative muscles more than you’d thought. And in many ways, this is emblematic of the times that we’re in. Each of us will be asked to try our hand at different roles and to look at things from different philosophical/political perspectives. Who better than you to show the way?

CAPRICORN: Yours is an intriguing dilemma, as you are faced with choices to make regarding your fiscal future and where you want to invest your time, energy, and expertise going forward. Your values and sense of ethics are in flux, and in light of what the financial news has been lately, this makes perfect sense. Though nothing is guaranteed, you stand to gain some footing this week. But bear in mind that the unraveling of world and local economic structures is just beginning. Follow your heart, and do unto others as you’d have them do unto you, and you’ll never go wrong.

AQUARIUS: Children, neighbors, siblings and nearly everyone within earshot is focused attentively on what you will say and do next. And though this tidal wave of sudden attention is as bewildering as it is uncomfortable for you, there’s probably a good reason as to why you’re ‘it’ all of a sudden. Could it be that you actually know what to do in a crisis better than anyone? That being the case, take a tip from your fellow Aquarian, Captain “Sully” Sullenberger. His genius at rising to the occasion with an economy of words has made him a legend.

PISCES: When people say that you seem “out of it’, what they probably mean is that your connection to the outer realms is more apparent to the naked eye than usual. And while Neptunian types do live in an altered state much of the time, you guys still required to be a part of what’s happening on planet Earth and to play by specific rules. Instead of going on “auto-pilot” which might be dangerous, take your cues from a spouse, partner or BFF this week, and ask if he or she wouldn’t mind acting as designated driver while providing a reality check for all important matters.