"The natal chart is like a seed and progressions are the unfolding in time of that into the plant it is to become. Transits, are like a daily weather report. In political astrology, these three factors have to be taken into account!"
~ Alice O. Howell
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Recent NewsScope columns at NeptuneCafe:

January 4, 2010 - advise on new year's resolutions, a check into Iran's horoscope, and hero  Jasper Schuringer

Jan 11, 2010 - Yemen's President Ali Abdullah Saleh,  Timothy Geithner, and Casey Johnson's death
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January 18, 2010 - Haiti's earthquake, the eclipse hits the U.S. chart, and Google fights censorship in China.

January 25, 2010 - the Supreme Court's decision, Feb's Top Five Astro-events, and Heidi Montag's surgery

February 1, 2010 - Toyota's troubles, J.D. Salinger and Howard Zinn, and Hollywood legend Jean Simmons
February 8, 2010 - the market outlook for 2010, China's 3:00 pm horoscope  and Charlie Sheen.

Feb 15, 2010 - Michelle Obama's Cause, Greece's financial crisis, and Ellen DeGeneris's Q rating

Feb 22, 2010 - the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, March's Top Five, and Olympic snowboarder Chris Klug

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March 1, 2010 - Chile's 8.8 earthquake, the Bloom Box, and Alice in Wonderland star Mia Wasikowska

March 8, 2010 - Best Actor Jeff Bridges, Mars turns direct and anger, plus the European Union's horoscope

March 15, 2010 - New York's wounded politicians, Greater Israel, and Betty White's Comeback at 88.

March 22, 2010 - Pluto's role in financial reform, Pope Benedict's troubles, and Sandra Bullock's marriage.

March 29, 2010 - Obama's improved standing, April's Astro-Events, and DWTS leader Nicole Scherzinger

April 5, 2010 - the influence of the June 26 Lunar Eclipse on Hamid Karzai and Pope Benedict, plus the iPad

April 12, 2010 - Poland's lost elite and the Katyn massacre, the Vatican, and DWTS star Erin Andrews

April 19, 2010 - the Grand Cross of 2010, hedge fund manager John Paulson, and Larry King's eighth divorce
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Reader Feedback Dept : "Three major earthquakes centered around April 6, just like you predicted in item#1 in this month's Top Five Astro-Events - GOOD CALL! "
Thailand's Red Shirts

After reading about the coming Grand Cross in last week's NewsScope, a reader wants to know how this will affect current tensions in Thailand, since her daughter is scheduled to travel there this summer. Last week, the U.S. State Department recommended that travelers avoid non-essential travel to Bangkok because of mass protests and escalating violence. "Will instability peak as the summer progresses?"

Thailand's horoscope (June 24, 1932; 5:00 am; Bangkok, Thailand) features the Sun at 2º Cancer, a placement that has been under celestial pressure from transiting Pluto and Saturn over the past year. While the outer planet transits will only become more severe over the coming year, the question of violence involves the conditions of Thailand's Mars, which natally is hidden away in the 12th house.

Mars forms a stabilizing trine to Saturn, which indicates that the military can emerge from the barracks periodically to restore order when the government becomes too corrupt. However, the military itself is prone to corruption due to its square to Neptune. Most recently, the generals took over on September 19, 2006 under classic coup d'etat indicators: progressed Mars was conjunct natal Pluto, and transiting Uranus opposed the progressed Sun.
The deposed prime minister, Thaksin Shinawatra (July 26, 1949), is rumored to be financially backing
the Red Shirts, the group behind the current protests. His chart is likewise under the rays of the 2010 Grand Cross (activating his natal Mars-Uranus conjunction in early Cancer and his progressed Sun at 1º Libra). With $billions at his disposal, he could move the current crisis into a civil war. The State Department's warning is well founded.
According to Nicholas Campion, this is the horoscope used by Thai astrologers.
Scarlett Johansson as the Black Widow

Bound to be another blockbuster hit, Iron Man 2 makes its U.S. debut on May 7. Already the cast of Hollywood superstars is headlining the entertainment news, with special attention being given to Scarlett Johansson and her sexy catsuit. Scarlett – who plays a Russian spy known as the Black Widow –  was praised by director Jon Favreau for her intense workout and diet so she could fit into the "unforgiving suit".

Scarlett Johansson was born with her Sun in free-spirited Sagittarius (November 22, 1984; 7:00 am*; New York, NY) and her Moon in sexy Scorpio. Her sex appeal, for which she has become rich and famous, can be seen in her Venus-Jupiter conjunction in the second house of money which trines her Midheaven. However, her Mars in Aquarius is also quite prominent, with sextiles to her Sun and Ascendant.
Mars here is given exceptional will power and physical strength by its square to Pluto. From these connections, we can see how Scarlett spent endless days training in various martial arts for her part (as progressed Mars squared her Saturn). Mars is also part of an Air Grand Trine (with trines to Chiron, Vesta and Juno) which gives her an engaging social network and helps support her various causes.

The woman who has won a variety of "the sexiest woman alive" awards speaks out often against the pressure on actresses to be super skinny. With Ceres in the gourmet sign of Taurus trine her Venus-Jupiter, Scarlett has a healthy attitude about food and eating. Finding expression for her Inner Warrior has helped tone her body without the need to starve herself. Results can be seen on Iron Man 2 posters everywhere.
* Data is rated C.
See also NewsScope's profile on Robert Downey Jr.
NewsScope for April 26, 2010
by Michael Wolfstar
The Top Five Astro-Events for May

1. The Sun squares Mars on May 4th, but is the dominant influence from the 1st through 5th. This high-energy vibe can lead to angry confrontations, and may mark the beginning of the U.S. invasion of Kandahar. Avoid hotheads and tyrants, and expect people to be extra rude, impulsive, impatient and aggressive. Choose your battles wisely.

2. Mercury turns direct on the 11th while it trines Ceres and Pluto from the 3rd through 19th. This connection bridges the practical earth signs while aligned with the U.S. Jupiter, so expect much debate on reforming the financial industry. After Mercury turns direct is a good time to put personal finances on a sound footing.

3. Jupiter opposes Saturn on May 23rd, but this dynamic is influential all month. Expansive Jupiter in faith-oriented Pisces meets grim Saturn, bringing many doubts about religion and moral justice. Another twist to the sex abuse scandal in the Catholic Church is likely. Those with exciting plans for the future (as Jupiter conjoins Uranus) have some practical matters to work out.
4. The Sagittarius Full Moon on May 27th takes place as Uranus enters Aries, which will energize travel plans and encourage many to start a new project, or to engage in radical new ideas or plans. Fundamental change is in the wind, and this facet of the outer planet T-square encourages you to
expand your horizons, become more independent, and express your true self.

5. Saturn turns direct on the 30th, the day before Neptune turns retrograde. It's as if one person is leaving while another arrives. In the work environment and political office, watch for those tinged with scandal or ineptitude to be booted out, while more efficient, competent individuals take their place. Wishful thinking is overcome by reality.