Saturn and the rise and fall of Politicians

It is unlikely than anyone can rise through the political ranks without a strongly placed Saturn. Access to this planet’s energies gives the tenacity and determination to win through against the odds, and to work for long-term goals. Coupled with Jupiter, Saturn keys into social forces which are the building blocks of society, particular law and government. At its finest, the politically-expressed Saturn represents a sense of responsibility and duty towards society, and a selfless dedication to government. However, on a personal level Saturn often evokes a sense of inferiority, lack of self-esteem and a feeling of not reaching the summit. To some extent this feeling is the driving force of ambition: the need to achieve something for society also rests on the need to prove oneself and gain recognition. Fear of failure leads to great efforts to succeed.

Ambitious Drives

If fears of insufficiency dominate behind the driving force of ambition, then it can be very difficult for the person in question to recognise when goals have been achieved. The force which drove them to achieve high position, still drives them when this position is reached. Ultimately there is the danger that ambition becomes overweening, and leads to fixed ideas about how success should be administered, and struggle when struggle is no longer needed. Thus overwork and over-control undermine health, popularity and success in the later stages of the career. Stressful aspects of the Sun to Saturn, particularly the square, and Saturn in the 10 th house have all acquired a reputation for fall from power, with Napoleon and Hitler often being cited as examples. The picture is however far more nuanced than this. Hitler’s Saturn in Leo in the 10 th was in detriment, so it was extra important for him to compensate for inferiority feelings by being leader of the 3 rd Reich. And Saturn was square a retrograde Venus in Taurus conjoining a debilitated Mars at the same degree. Even half a million people simultaneously rising their right arm in military salute could not quite convince him that he was loved. With no mitigating aspects to Saturn in the 10 th , it is hardly any wonder that it expressed itself appallingly.

Mitterandsee chart of Francois Mitterand

Francois Mitterand (Note 1.) had Saturn in the 10 th also in square to the Sun, yet he acquitted himself rather well as President of France from 1981 to 1994, being its first socialist president… much to the alarm of the USA at the time. Born at the time of a Saturn/Neptune conjunction, he has a typical “socialist” astrological signature. He was also imprisoned by the Germans during WW2 – another expression of Saturn/Neptune squaring the Sun. Although dogged by rumours of collaboration with the Vichy government, this never seriously affected his government, and neither did his womanising. (Probably seen as a plus-factor in France). His ability to handle presidential power is probably shown by the Pluto/MC conjunction trining his Sun. This may also explain why he was so keen on building up France’s nuclear deterrent. (Their intercontinental missile was called “Pluton”.) In Mitterand’s case, his Sun is also opposing Jupiter, which probably counteracts the negativity of the Sun/Saturn square, and Mars trines Saturn and Neptune from the 3 rd house, giving him the ability to fight for his case in a very convincing way.

Kohlsee chart of Helmut Kohl

Another great European leader, Helmut Kohl (Note 2) had Saturn in the 10 th also square the Sun, which makes quite a convincing case for political success – and success which is long term – as Kohl was Chancellor of Germany for 16 years until 1998. His success was even more marked than Mitterand’s, with the unification of East and West Germany as the crowning point of his career. The point is, that in Kohl’s case, Saturn is extremely well-placed in its own sign, and it is square to an exalted Sun in Aries. Furthermore, Kohl’s Sun/Uranus conjunction is exactly sextile Jupiter, though it is also tied in to a T-square with Pluto. It was at the time of the Saturn/Neptune conjunction at 10 Capricorn – right on Kohl’s MC – on Kohl’s 2 nd Saturn return, that the Berlin wall dissolved and the two Germanyy subsequently unified. He was certainly the right man in the right place at the right time. His departure as leader of the German conservative party was marred by a scandal concerning the misuse of party funds, presaged no doubt my his 2 nd House Gemini Moon exactly squaring Neptune.

Chiang Kai-Shek – see chart of Chiang Kai-Shek

The Saturn/Sun/Jupiter theme continues for another long-term leader, Chiang Kai-Shek, (Note 3) who led China from 1928 to 1949, where he retreated to Formosa, later Taiwan, which he governed until his death in 1975. The iron hand of a general can clearly be seen in the fixed sign square between Sun in Scorpio and Saturn in Leo, and his ruthlessness in the Pluto square Mars in the 8 th house. His fate as leader of a “second” China, which was eventually to be disowned by the international community can perhaps be seen in the conjunction of Neptune and Pluto in the 4 th house, opposing Mercury in “exile” in Sagittarius. He personally felt that the hand of fate had been against him, and that Taiwan was small compensation for China. It is said he died a disappointed man.

Milosevicsee chart of Slobodan Milosevic

One man currently in the news with a Saturn/Sun square is Slobodan Milosevic. (Note 4) With Sun in Leo and in the 5 th he dreamed of being acclaimed leader of a “Greater Serbia”. Adulation was probably very important for him. The trine from Mars in Aries gave him military tendencies, though the 12 th house position showed him manipulating events more behind the scenes. His tragic childhood, indicated by a Moon/Pluto/Chiron conjunction in the 4 th house, meant that he played out early trauma on a national and international stage. Both parents committed suicide, his father in 1962, and mother in 1972, and his own subsequent behaviour as Serbia’s strongman turned out to be equally suicidal for his home country. His fall from power in 2000 and his incarceration as a war criminal in The Hague coincided with Neptune’s transit opposing his Moon. His war trial in 2002 coincides with the transit of Uranus in opposition to Sun and Mercury, and square Saturn, guaranteeing him media attention. Perhaps he still has a few surprises up his sleeve. As transiting Saturn sextiles his Sun from the 3 rd house cusp from August 2002 to May 2003 we can expect him to put up a stubborn defence, making a successful prosecution difficult.

Cheneysee chart of Dick Cheney

Even more relevant for the present period is the Sun/Saturn square in the Vice President of America, Dick Cheney’s, horoscope, (Note 5) which is now receiving a transit from Neptune. Again we can see the powerful configuration of Jupiter conjoining Saturn in aspect to the Sun, propelling him into an ambitious career as an arch conservative: pro-gun, anti-abortion, pro-death penalty pro-oil and anti environment. With three fixed planets in the 9 th house, he is unlikely to change his views in this life, and he undoubtedly does not believe in the next. His 6 th house Aquarian Sun shows him as a loyal servant of the Republicans in general and the Bush family in particular. His notoriously weak heart is probably also shown by his afflicted Sun in detriment here.


Whilst his career boost predictably took place with the repeat of the Saturn/Jupiter conjunction on his Midheaven in 2000 – exactly like Helmut Kohl – he is surely heading for disgrace and obscurity now. Neptune triggers his Sun from May 2002 to November 2003, and Pluto triggers first his Mars in the Spring of 2002 (whilst Saturn opposes – he is under tremendous stress), and later his Moon. It’s difficult to believe he will see out his term, and it may be scandal rather than health which beats him. What obviously springs to mind is Cheney’s involvement with the energy giant Enron, which collapsed with catastrophic results at the end of last year. Fortunately for both Bush and Cheney, the current terrorist war has kept the public’s minds off this crisis, but it is now seeping back into the public’s consciousness. Vice President Dick Cheney’s energy task force met six times with Enron officials last year, and Enron’s Chairman Ken Lay personally met Cheney on April 17 th . As Enron was Bush’s largest campaign contributor, questions are being asked about how much Cheney used his influence to help Enron. At present nobody knows because Cheney refused to disclose details of meetings on February 2, 2002, invoking “executive privilege”.

Oil Secrets

With Neptune on his 2 nd house cusp, opposing the Moon in Pisces, it is naive to believe that Cheney does not have hidden links with energy companies, particular as regards oil. In 1993 Cheney left politics and entered the private sector, serving as chairman and CEO of Dallas-Based Halliburton Corporation, specialising in the development of oil and gas production around the world, particularly the new emerging Caspian Sea area. For his Neptune in the 2nd, oil is where the money is, as shown by its links to Venus in Capricorn. It’s difficult not to raise questions about the present US Afghanistan policy, when the enormous oil reserves of Central Asia are considered. With US interests firmly entrenched in Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan and the Caspian Sea area they are reluctant to empower Russia or Iran by leading pipelines through their countries, and it is common knowledge that they wish for access to the South East Asian market via pipelines through Afghanistan. Obviously the desire to fight terrorism in Afghanistan was a major factor for Bush and Cheney, but it will be interesting to see how they consolidate their influence in this country once Al Quaeda is pacified. We can expect to read of a growing scandal involving Cheney peaking in May 2003, as a transiting retrograde Mercury in Taurus squares a Mars/Neptune conjunction. This precisely activates Cheney’s Sun/Saturn – a situation he is unlikely to survive, though it could drag on for some time.

Danish Downfall

Closer to my own home base in Denmark, inhabitants have been treated to the spectacle of the imminent downfall of a well-known mayor who also sports an interesting Sun/Saturn square. He has had a high profile for many years because of unconventional and pronounced right-wing methods, but he went too far when it was discovered he had been indulging in exclusive dinners (with exclusive wines at $1000 a go) with his cronies, paid for courtesy of his electorate. Subsequent investigations in February 2002 showed that he had manipulated with enormous sums of money channelling them into pet projects like sports stadiums and the like, quite unbeknownst to the council commute. Too much power for too many years had led the man, Peter Brixtofte, into believing that the city he controlled was his own personal fiefdom.

See chart of Peter Brixtofte

Looking at Brixtofte’s horoscope (Note 6) it’s easy to see that he is an extremely hard-working person, (with a Mars/Saturn conjunction in Virgo, as well as the Moon) and that his Jupiter/Venus on the MC shows a love of his political duties and the people he represents… as well as the fact that he has been popular for many years. At the present time he is fighting for his political life, as the council has taken the extraordinary and perhaps unconstitutional step of relieving him of his duties. A canny interviewer on TV (Michael Meyerheim) asked him “Do you think you may have difficulty admitting that you are wrong?” That’s the right question to put to a Sagittarian! His answer, initially, was naturally that he hadn’t done anything wrong. Brixtofte is fighting like a fish on a hook.

Dead Man Walking

He believes he still has a future. But the transit of Pluto to conjoin his Sun and square his Saturn shows that his career as mayor is definitively finished. He will not survive, but he is at present unaware of this. The last transit of Pluto to the Sun comes in November 2003, but the coup-de-grace will probably come quickly with the Saturn opposition in June, and the eclipse of the Sun at 19.54 Gemini on June 10 th . His star goes out, and he would be well-advised to seek new pastures, perhaps in federal Europe. It remains to be seen what the consequences will be for the present right-wing Danish government, with whom Brixtofte has such strong links. It is significant that the Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen has Sun 6 Aquarius square Jupiter 12 Taurus – echoing the chart of Dick Cheney. Here too it is likely that government power is dissolved by escalating financial scandal.

Judging from these high-profile examples, it would seem that a strong Saturn and a strong Jupiter configured with the Sun is an excellent tool if you are seeking influence in society. Ignominy and fall only come when the complexes associated with Saturn obscure the nobility of the Sun, and this is by no means a foregone conclusion. Difficult Saturn aspects may bring setbacks, but they also bring determination and resilience. There is no guarantee that they bring self-knowledge however, although a downfall or two certainly gives rise to lonely periods of introspection.

© Adrian Ross Duncan 15 Mar 2002

Thanks to for birth data.
1. Francois Mitterand: Gauquelin Vol 5/1504. AA data.
2. Helmut Kohl: Alexander Von Pronay from birth certificate. AA data.
3. Chiang Kai-Shek: Blackwell quotes Soong Dynasty (Harper & Row, 1985, p.152) “At precisely noon.” B data.
4. Data from Stjernerne .
5. Dick Cheney: Stephen Przybylowski quotes data read from the birth certificate.
6. Data from Jørn Nielsen, source unknown.


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