(Part 2) By Edith Hathaway (Copyright © 2001, Revised 2010)
(The second of a two-part article published in the Jan. 2002 and Feb. 2002 issues of The Astrological Magazine, Bangalore, India.)
GATT and WTO are Born
Another major turning point in the globalization process was the creation of the WTO (the World Trade Organization). This came about through the passage of GATT (General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs). Though GATT was in formulation stages since 1947, it was the so- called “Uruguay Round of GATT” that created the WTO. This occurred when the U.S. Congress and Senate passed this legislation on December 1, 1994. Using 12 noon for Washington DC, since there is no exact time, the Ascendant is 1:21 Aquarius.
Jupiter-Saturn in mutual kendras repeats the theme of angular planets in the Microsoft chart, though the positions are here reversed. Jupiter is now in Scorpio with Saturn strong in its own sign of Aquarius, aspecting Jupiter. This indicates that the globalization process would be likely to benefit Microsoft. And indeed, on September 6, 2001, the U.S. Justice Department dropped its more severe anti-trust charges against the corporate giant, making it no longer necessary for Microsoft to face the possibility of the company’s breakup.
Also, as with the Microsoft chart, Mars aspects both Jupiter and Saturn. The Sun, as karaka of corporations, is in a Parivartana Yoga with Mars, which aspects it. This describes both the strength and supremacy of the corporation, but also — with Mars in the 7th house — the at times fierce opposition to WTO and many other creations of GATT. Unfortunately for those who would like to see GATT and WTO weakened, the fixed sign emphasis gives some longevity to the treaty.
The Moon is karaka of the general populace, and as it is waning in this chart and with Rahu (which can eclipse the Moon), it could be said that the populace does not prosper from GATT and WTO. The only way to keep them engaged with GATT and WTO is through the creature comforts of Venus, which is strong in Libra earlier in the 9th house. But the general tenor of this WTO chart is Tamasic, and thus harsh — especially with 7 out of 9 planets in nakshatras owned by Tamasic planets : Mars, Saturn, Rahu and Ketu. Saturn gets added strength by the Shasha Mahapurusha Yoga (a special yoga when Saturn is in an angle of the chart and also exalted or in its own sign). With Aquarius Ascendant, there is a Lakshmi Yoga (of wealth and success) with both Ascendant lord strong and 9th Lord Venus strong in its own house. Using the 12 noon chart, Saturn dasa begins on April 3, 2002. Since Saturn is strong in Aquarius in the Ascendant, GATT and WTO should mostly flourish during this 19-year dasa.
Communications about the operations of GATT and WTO are understandably secretive, with Mercury combust in its enemy’s sign of Scorpio. Because most of WTO’s dictates and projects are unknown, the Mars aspect on Mercury in Scorpio creates further controversy on the subject. Indeed, when the legislatures of most countries came to vote on GATT, they had not informed themselves of the content of the proposed legislation. In many cases the text of the agreement was either not available, or had not yet been translated into the language of that country at the time of voting. At the time of the U.S. House and Senate votes, their critics said that legislators really did not know what the GATT agreement contained. Corporate lobbyists exerted tremendous influence in the negotiations, (just as with the gold-dollar severance in August 1971), yet at all stages of the negotiation, adoption and implementation of these “free trade” agreements, citizen participation was almost eliminated. Such is the weakness of the Moon in this chart, not to mention its irritability and confusion from the Rahu contact.
Because of the power of the WTO and its trade laws – national, state and local laws are now overruled by the WTO. Since all documents, transcripts and proceedings are secret, no media are allowed to observe the proceedings. There is no required disclosure of potential conflicts of interest, and there is obviously no guarantee of impartiality. The decision-makers are likely to rule in favor of corporate interests and they have plenty of protection set in place to do so. Citizens’ rights have been smashed with such an arrangement. With the subsequent passage of NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement) and the FTAA (Free Trade Area of the Americas) in the mid-1990s, there has been a worsening of the situation for citizens. Governments have been asked to interfere in the conduct of trade as little as possible. This insures that a very few large corporations now essentially rule over a nation’s economic and political structures.
Violence in Genoa
As a consequence, it scarcely comes as a surprise that private citizens would stage massive demonstrations. This was amply illustrated at the Big-8 meeting in Genoa in summer 2001 and prior to that, in other events — such as the WTO/FTAA summit in Quebec City in April 2001, and the WTO meeting in Seattle, June 2000 — often referred to as “the battle in Seattle.” In this context, it is important to place these major demonstrations after the Jupiter-Saturn conjunction of May 28, 2000.
This occurred at 28:51 Aries in the constellation of Krittika. An aberration in a series of Jupiter-Saturn conjunctions in earth signs (from February 1961), it insures at least some open conflict over the hand that has been run roughshod over the citizens of the world by the major corporations. Krittika is a constellation ruled by the Sun — karaka of the corporation, but also of the king and kingdoms, government and authority. And it seems the corporation and its kingdom will prevail, at least during the 20-year cycle from 2000 to 2020. In any case, the battle of the citizen against the corporation is as challenging as the battle of governments against terrorists. There is a basic problem of being able to identify who is doing what, and finding them accountable. It is ironic that they both elude international, national and local laws.
Once again, as in the early 1970s, we find ourselves in a period of transiting Saturn in Rohini nakshatra (May 21, 2001 through May 30, 2002), and thus in a recessionary time when Big Business will fight back extra hard not to lose the rights and profits it worked so hard to garner. Transiting Saturn entered Rohini two months prior to the Big-8 meeting in Genoa. This in part explains why the corporate elite, bolstered by their partner-nations fought back with much greater toughness and cruelty in Genoa than in Seattle or Quebec City. In addition, between July 15 and September 30, 2001 Jupiter transited through Ardra, a sharp and problematic nakshatra — which gives none of the usual Jupiterian balance, but plenty of its harsher, more dogmatic side. (Rahu also remained in its own nakshatra of Ardra through October 14, 2001.) Europe was reeling for many weeks from the police brutality against peaceful protesters and independent journalists in particular. Except for the foreign press and the alternative press in the USA, Americans had little exposure to what actually occurred in the way of police brutality in Genoa. The corporate-owned mainstream media had a different slant on these events, further confirmation that our “democracies” have become virtual corporate media dictatorships.
The Big-8 meeting took place in Genoa, Italy, July 20, 2001. The start time was 8:00 am, with an Ascendant of 25:51 Cancer. Saturn was in Rohini nakshatra moving toward its exact opposition with Pluto on August 5, 2001, and separating from an opposition with Mars by sign (4 degrees wide). Jupiter-Rahu-Mercury-Moon in Gemini opposite Ketu in Sagittarius kicked off a summer dramatic in its intensity of internecine warfare in the Middle East as well as in Genoa. Jupiter-Rahu in Gemini assures that religious and philosophical ideologies will be polarized, and with the aspect of Mars in Scorpio, they would also run hot. Having turned direct on July 19th, Mars was ready to unleash its fury. Communications were guaranteed to be widespread but often misinformed and emotionalized, with Mercury in the same sign as Jupiter, Rahu and the Moon, though occupying its own sign of Gemini. The people lose out over all, with waning Moon aspected by Mars.
Even though we are now under the influence of the Jupiter-Saturn conjunction of May 28, 2000 at 29 degrees Aries, it seems the effects of an amazingly powerful Jupiter-Saturn conjunction of February 18, 1961 are still very much with us. Its occurrence in the nakshatra of Uttarashada (“the later victor”) speaks volumes about the power of the business elite that would come in later decades. Like a juggernaut, it is very difficult to stop, and we are just beginning to understand its ramifications. One could ask: How could such a concentrated dose of political and financial power have sway over our contemporary world, with our many democratic institutions as well as unprecedented communications systems ?
Here is where the subsequent Jupiter-Saturn conjunction in Virgo may have compounded the problem of power consolidation for the common people and given it to the few corporations seizing power. (Virgo is ruled by Mercury, planet of communications.) An increased network of computerized communication can reach everybody around the earth. And with the ability to corporatize the power bases of the communications industry (and indeed most industries), you can control and rule over what people think much more effectively. Corporate advertising has taught people in the farthest corners of the world what they should want to buy, and make them discontented until they get it! In addition, President Bush has indicated he will increase both wiretapping and tapping into personal computers to investigate potential terrorists and in the process, weaken the civil liberties of millions of citizens.
Thus, in the early 21st century, we are by no means done with the corporate power structure that was just beginning to show its dominance in the early 1960s. Upcoming we have a Jupiter-Saturn conjunction in Capricorn in 2020, in Virgo in 2040, in Taurus in 2060, and again in Capricorn in 2080. This is a relatively long uninterrupted materialist reign, with more Jupiter-Saturn conjunctions in the earth element over hundreds of years to come, just as Jupiter-Saturn conjunction in the water and fire elements dominated for 675 years up to 1961.
With the background influence of Jupiter-Saturn in Capricorn, there are likely to be many situations over the subsequent decades that bring governments coerced by corporations (backed by significant military power) — to their knees. In short, the subjugation process and the loss of sovereignty have developed into a real issue of the 21st century.
Looking at a longer pattern of the ongoing Jupiter-Saturn conjunctions through earth signs, we all need to be aware how we are participating in “the money dictates” mentality. Are we unconscious in how we give too much power to the corporations? We need to be alert to every possible sign of a weakened citizenry. For, as long as we have democracies, at least in name, the elected officials are supposed to be listening to us. Most importantly, as astrologers, we need to keep rejuvenating Jupiter in our lives, since Jupiter is all too easily overthrown in earth signs. As a planet of Dharma, Jupiter in Capricorn does not work well and forces us to find our true Dharma in times that are inhospitable to such a goal. This is a reflection on the long-term influence of the Jupiter-Saturn conjunction in early Capricorn on Feb. 18, 1961.
The natal Sun in the GATT-WTO chart at 15:29 Scorpio is still vulnerable to attack and restructuring, with transiting Saturn hovering within two degrees of exact opposition between December 5, 2001 and April 13, 2002.
The chart of the Genoa conflict shows Saturn at 17:12 Taurus opposite Mars at 21:14 Scorpio. The outstanding feature in the near term is that transiting Saturn will turn Stationary Direct at 14:09 Taurus on February 8, 2002. Thus, we could see some major events in connection with GATT and WTO at this time. Perhaps, there is a change in leadership, except this would be likely to be behind the scenes. Most of us would not know about it, Scorpio is so featured in the 10th house. But in general, the chart of GATT-WTO moves into a favorable 19-year Saturn dasa starting April 3, 2002. Thus, even if opposition to it continues, this entity and its treaties gain strength in the world during the Saturn dasa.
Looking at the New Year chart of 2002 (April 12, 2002, 15-21 EDT, Washington, DC), one is slightly more hopeful of some more peaceful results than the New Year chart of 2001.  I say “slightly” because at least this is a Friday, rather than a Saturday, as with the 2001 chart. However, Sun-Moon are in the 8th house in the Washington DC chart and at 28:49 Pisces are Rikta Sandhi, perhaps, spelling an ending of certain leaderships. Mars-Saturn-Rahu in Taurus opposite Pluto-Ketu is especially intense and recalcitrant. I don’t usually include the outer planets in a strictly Vedic analysis, but since Saturn-Pluto will have undergone a series of three oppositions by late spring 2002 (August 5 and November 2, 2001, as well as May 25, 2002), one should include the intensity of Pluto in this already formidable opposition. Across the 4th-10th house axis, there is some major pressure on American leadership. In some ways, it looks quite dangerous, but there are several mitigating factors which could soften the blow. First, a Raja Yoga and Parivartana Yoga : Venus and Mars exchange signs as 9th and 10th lords. Also, the Mars-Saturn-Rahu combination is contained in a Shubhakartari Yoga in the 10th house, when classic benefic planets surround a house or a planet on either side.
Saturn is in Rohini nakshatra through May 30th, and prior to that there is the Saturn-Pluto opposition May 25th. Thus up through late May 2002, one would expect to see some struggles for the USA and its President. Jupiter in Ardra nakshatra is not a good indication for tolerance and good judgment. And though Jupiter in the 11th is in a good placement for financial gains, Saturn’s influence for the year is still in Rohini, continuing the recessionary trends.
Copyright © 2001, revised 2010 By Edith Hathaway. All rights reserved.
 Tamasic is one of the qualities of the three gunas, or threads described in ancient Vedic philosophy, all of them necessary in nature: Sattva, Rajas, and Tamas. Sattva is light, spiritual, and uplifting; Rajas is active, energetic, aggressive; Tamas provides staility, but can be dense, inert, and caught in animal qualities that manifest death and destruction while seeking security.
 The Vedic New Year chart occurs with the New Moon in Pisces prior to Sun entering Aries.
 Rikta Sandhi is the junction of two signs, or of two constellations, and is considered treacherous.