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NewsScope for May 4, 2009
by Michael Wolfstar

Joseph Luter III and Smithfield Foods

Since early February, hundreds of villagers who live near the manure lagoons that surround La Gloria, Mexico were showing flu-like symptoms. If La Gloria proves to be ground zero for the swine flu epidemic, the pig factories there owned by Smithfield Foods may very well be culpable. The man who made Smithfield Foods what it is today – the world's largest pork producer – is Joseph Luter III. 
owners failed, and he returned as the CEO of Smithfield Foods on April 8, 1975.

Also at the time, transiting Uranus was in Scorpio, kicking off his T-Square, and transiting Saturn was in Cancer, giving him a renewed sense of family responsibility. Over the next few decades he began a buying spree of other pork processors. Rolling Stone magazine* describes what he built: "America's top pork producer churns out a sea of waste that has destroyed rivers, killed millions of fish and generated one of the largest fines in EPA history." And to this one might add, "started a level-five pandemic alert."
Luter's horoscope (July 17, 1939; Smithfield, VA; time unknown) features the Sun, Chiron and Venus in family-oriented Cancer, so he naturally joined the pork processing business that his father started in 1936. He sold the business for $20 million in July 1969 during his first Saturn Return, having demonstrated his business acumen. Since he was born with Mars retrograde, he wasn't all that clear about his path.

The main dynamic in Luter's chart is a fixed T-square, featuring his Mars in Aquarius opposite Pluto and square Saturn. This configuration reveals an unusually aggressive, forceful personality, always pushing to dominate and overcome competitors. When his Mars turned direct by secondary progression in 1975, he found his path. The new
Hygeia, The Goddess of Health

Astrologers have a variety of tools to track potential epidemics, but none of them seem particularly accurate. Illness can be seen as the lack of health, and in this realm the fourth largest asteroid, Hygeia, is a useful archetype. Known as the Goddess of Health in Greek mythology, Hygeia under stressful conditions can correspond to sickness, especially when sixth house factors are also involved.

A case in point is the current panic over the Swine Flu, which first appeared on the front pages of U.S. media on April 25. Hygeia in the U.S. horoscope is located at 25º Leo, exactly opposite the U.S. Moon. Transiting Jupiter, Chiron and Neptune coming together in Aquarius are activating this dynamic. Also at the time, transiting Hygeia was at 21º Gemini, exactly conjunct the U.S. Mars, which is the ruler of the Scorpio Rising U.S. horoscope.

Transiting Hygeia moves too fast to be of any real significance, and so progressed Hygeia can be used to see if there will be any real epidemic. A look at the historical record of previous epidemics shows a strong correspondence between an afflicted progressed Hygeia and the timing of outbreaks. The best example of this is the 1918 flu epidemic which started when progressed Hygeia was exactly opposite Chiron in the sixth house of health.

In 1952, 3.3 million cases of polio marked the peak of this epidemic, which unfolded as progressed Hygeia and progressed Saturn were exactly conjunct (at 3º Scorpio). Currently, the U.S. progressed Hygeia is at 15º Scorpio, and favorably aspecting progressed Jupiter at 15º Cancer. This is not troublesome, and so this Swine Flu should soon be readily dismissed.
* For more on Joseph Luter and Smithfield  Foods, see rolling stone
Also of interest:

** In Mexico, Hygeia is found in the sixth house of health. Because Hygeia is opposite Pluto, she is much challenged in her role as protectoress of Mexico's well-being. At the moment, Mexico's progressed Moon is exactly squaring Hygiea, highlighting the stressful conditions that fostered the Swine Flu epidemic. Joseph Luter III has Hygeia at 3º Capricorn, a point now under heavy celestial activation from transiting Pluto.

Reader feedback is welcome.
American Idol's
Adam Lambert

Many American Idol fans were shocked last week when front-runner Adam Lambert landed in the bottom two. He wasn't the one sent home, and according to, iTunes and other unofficial
Adam Lambert was born with his Sun in independent Aquarius (January 29, 1982; San Diego, CA; time unknown) where it forms a square to flamboyant Jupiter in sexy Scorpio. Those with Sun-Jupiter squares have an infectious confidence and exuberance, with a larger-than-life personality and penchant for showmanship. Adam is a seasoned performer in the Los Angeles area, and unabashedly wears dark eyeliner and diamond-studded earrings.

Evolutionary astrologer Steven Forrest suggests that when Venus is conjunct the South Node (as in Adam's chart), the previous incarnation was as a female. This isn't always the case, since Venus also rules the arts, and the previous life could have been as an artist or
measures, he remains the favorite to be the last one standing when the finals arrive on May 20. And if he wins, he'll be the first openly gay contestant selected by millions of Americans.
musician. Britney Spears has the same set-up as Adam, with Venus conjunct the South Node and squaring a Saturn-Pluto conjunction, creating a complex and intense sexuality that can further ambitions.

The Idol finale on May 21 takes place when transiting Jupiter, Chiron and Neptune are all within ½º of each other at 26º Aquarius. These three planets trine Adam's Pluto, favorably enhancing his inner resources, and enabling him to do his best. Then, with Saturn turning direct while making a hard aspect to his Mercury, he will have a difficult decision to make for his performance. Tune in to see if he makes the smart choice.

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