Welcome to the November 2022 Cosmic Weather Forecast by Curtis Lang with Jane Sherry.November's planetary aspects indicate we are in for another wild roller coaster ride with the potential for white hot emotional meltdowns and white knuckle plunges deep into the shadowy realms of the collective unconscious, followed by the onset of optimistic visionary revelations that could prompt vast changes in the way we live, individually and collectively.
On Tuesday, November 8, at 6:02 A.M. EST, we celebrate the Taurus Full Blood Moon Eclipse and the Scorpio Solar Festival.
This intense lunation features the Sun at 16º 1' Scorpio in a multiple conjunction with Mercury, the South Node and Venus opposite the Moon, Uranus and the North Node conjunct in Taurus, with all these luminaries in a Fixed Sign T-square in conflict with Saturn in Aquarius.
The same day, Americans go to the polls in another contentious national election.
In the social and political realms, this dramatic multi-planetary T-Square indicates a stalemate between the Uranian urge for individual freedom and the Saturnian constraints of large institutions that define and maintain the social status quo in every area of life.
This stalemate creates tension and frustrations that tend to be expressed by explosive emotional outbursts arising from the collective consciousness of large groups of people, symbolized by the Moon, who are all convinced that their destiny, symbolized by the North Node, is being thwarted by other social groups, symbolized by the other planets in the T-square.
Confrontations between opposing forces appear to the participants to be existential crusades to achieve non-negotiable demands. Polarization is extreme and there is no visible room for compromise.
Candidates of both parties are running on conspiracy theories and warnings of imminent apocalyptic political meltdown.
Republicans say the 2020 election was fraudulent, and they promise to investigate and prosecute officials who presided over that election if they obtain a Congressional majority.
Democrats say that if Republicans gain control of Congress the end of our democracy is at hand.
National, state and local election results will be contested across the country.
The pandemonium that ensues post-election will most likely continue for some time to come since this extremely powerful Blood Moon Eclipse directly conjunct Uranus in Taurus as part of a Fixed T-Square will trigger the energies of the waning but still powerful Saturn-Uranus square that has dominated Cosmic Weather Patterns for the last three years.
During that time we've endured a global pandemic, seen escalating political confrontations between right wing authoritarian populists and neo-liberal globalizers in countries around the world, and experienced sky-high volatility in wobbly financial markets from New York and London to Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen.
In Ukraine, we are seeing the first hot war in Europe since 1939. Globally, Cold War 2.0 has split the world into warring camps, derailed globalization and created severe supply chain issues worldwide.
So the Uranus in Taurus square Saturn in Aquarius energy signature has coincided with unprecedented challenges to the post-World War II global geopolitical status quo, which had been characterized by the unipolar military dominance of the United States and by a globalized, highly financialized dollar based economy rigged to benefit America above all.
Geopolitically, America's challenges are multiplying.
Russia is openly confronting the global hegemon on the battlefield in Ukraine, while China and Russia are increasing their influence in Europe, Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America.
Generals East and West are counting their nukes and preparing contingency plans for a much wider war. The fact that leaders in Washington, Brussels, and Moscow are treating global thermonuclear war as a possibility indicates the level of terrifying insanity the world is facing.
Global markets are jittery, economies are teetering on the edge of recession, and global bankers, insiders and policy wonks are getting very nervous.
"I was in Washington at the International Monetary Fund meeting," Economist Nouriel Roubini, aka Dr. Doom, told Der Spiegel International at the end of October. "The economic historian Niall Ferguson said in a speech there that we would be lucky if we got an economic crisis like in the 1970s – and not a war like in the 1940s. National security advisers were worried about NATO getting involved in the war between Russia and Ukraine and Iran and Israel being on a collision course. And just this morning, I read that the Biden administration expects China to attack Taiwan sooner rather than later. Honestly, World War III has already effectively begun, certainly in Ukraine and cyberspace."
After 20 years of failed American wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria, the rest of the world sees the American military as an overfunded, over-engineered, muscle bound mess of a war machine, operated by an elite class of spoiled, greedy, rich bullies who represent the decadent denouement of European Imperialism.
There is a growing desire for a multi-polar world on every continent and an end to the unchallengeable hegemony of the American Empire.
At home, as we approach the Blood Moon Eclipse 2022 November Election, America is weakened by a long increasingly acrimonious culture war that has rendered American politics a toxic stew and eroded America's political, cultural and intellectual supremacy.
People in countries around the world no longer see American democracy as the obviously best form of government. They are shocked and disgusted by what they see of the politically dysfunctional, self-defeating civic warfare in America in the early 21st century.
So are Americans.
"Nearly 8 in 10 Americans describe the current state of affairs in the U.S. as out of control, according to a new CBS News-YouGov poll," as reported by The Hill, a website which reports exclusively on Congress. "73 percent of respondents said things are going badly in the country."
So America's Empire, represented by the status quo Saturn in Aquarius, had been thought stable and consistent as Father Time, but now is being challenged by highly combustible Uranus in Taurus, representing the unstoppable forces seeking to dismantle the political and financial American status quo and institute a new world order of one flavor or another.
The effects of the Saturn-Uranus square will be extremely potent for the remainder of the year, so it's likely that the political blowback from the November 8 elections will linger for at least a month, and perhaps longer.
The impact of this immensely volatile Uranian lunation, correlated with unexpected, explosive changes in the collective consciousness, could also indicate an exponential increase in global financial market instability, and the onset of a new financial paradigm characterized by vastly increased risks and the potential for a series of economic meltdowns.
The risk of financial panic during the next year will rise continuously over the months to come because on November 2nd, as the waxing moon Uranus approached their Blood Moon Eclipse positions, the Federal Reserve Bank raised interest rates by 3/4 of a point for the sixth time this year.
Jerome Powell, head of the Federal Reserve, told markets in no uncertain terms on November 2nd that he intends to continue raising interest rates higher, faster, and longer than expected to subdue inflation.
Black Friday on May 9, 1873 at the Vienna stock exchange,
Public Domain, Courtesy Wikipedia
The last time the Fed attempted to stem what it saw as rising inflation, in the fall of 2018, markets swooned, investors sold stocks and bonds, and weeks of financial volatility and turmoil wiped out trillions of dollars in household wealth. At that time the Consumer Price Index, a widely watched inflation index, had increased 2.5% over the previous year.
For comparison, the CPI today, after all the 2022 rate hikes, has increased by 8.2% since last year. This is the highest level since 1981, when the inflation rate was over 10%, and interest rates were at an eye-watering 16.63%.
In retrospect the 2018 inflation scare was a mild economic bump in the road caused in large part by the Trump administration. Trump had pumped around $1.5 trillion of tax cuts and public spending into a full employment economy, so it was not surprising that there was a mild inflationary effect.
By January 2019, amid widespread fears that increasing interest rates would bankrupt highly leveraged speculators at too big to fail financial institutions, overly indebted corporations living on low cost loans, and high-flyers using low interest loans to make colossal algorithm driven bets in the $300-400 trillion dollar derivatives marketplace, the Fed reversed course, lowered interest rates, and once again pumped more liquidity into the financial markets.
In retrospect, it is clear that the Fed was caught in a classic monetary policy debt trap.
Rising inequality in America since the 1980s has vastly increased the savings of the top 10% of wealth holders, the upper middle class, the rich and the super-rich.
The increase in money supply has driven interest rates lower, which enticed borrowers rich and poor, corporations and individuals, to borrow more money, increasing debt levels overall, and stimulating spending.
Reflection in a Soap Bubble
Brocken Inaglory. Image edited by user:Alvesgaspar, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Eventually, bubbles appeared in certain markets overstimulated by access to cheap and easy money. In 2001, the dot com bubble burst, and the Fed stepped in to lower interest rates for a couple of years during a mild recession.
The Fed easy money policy designed to ease the pain of the dot com collapse stimulated the housing bubble, which burst in 2008.
In response, the Fed lowered interest rates and pumped free money into the accounts of banks and Wall Street firms.
Over the next decade markets delivered huge gains to those owning financial assets. Huge gains in stocks, bonds, cryptocurrencies, NFTs, collectible items, art and real estate appeared, and these outsize gains appeared to some to resemble the bubbles in dot com stocks and housing.
DeAardiens Club non-fungible token
DeAardiens, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons
NFTs were declared the future of fine art in 2021.
Households, corporations, and financial market players took on more and more low cost debt. Borrowers became increasingly addicted to easy money. Their debt burdens increased so much that in the event that interest rates were to rise, speculators, investors, corporations, homeowners and households in general would be unable to service the debt.
The fear that all these bubbles would burst in late 2018 is what caused the Fed to pivot toward easier money policies in early 2019, and the bubbles began to expand again.
Then with the advent of the Covid pandemic, as the economy seized up and markets once again appeared on the verge of a total meltdown, the Biden administration administered $5 trillion dollars of pandemic stimulus to the American economy. The Fed maintained its easy money policies.
Governments around the globe enacted similar bailouts and kept interest rates near or below zero.
Is it any wonder that the result of this historically unprecedented combination of governmental spending and monetary stimulus would trigger a bout of inflation?
Russian Troops Block Entrance to Ukrainian Army Base, 2014
Anton Holoborodko (Антон Голобородько),
Then, as inflation began to emerge, the Russian invasion of Ukraine triggered Western sanctions on Russian oil and gas, and Ukraine's vast agricultural exports were choked off from global markets.
Supply side shocks from the sanctions and the war triggered rapid inflation, reminiscent of the 1970s, when OPEC raised oil prices and delivered inflationary shocks to the world economy that led to recession accompanied by swift rises in commodity prices, wages and interest rates.
This extremely unpleasant condition is known to economists as stagflation. Some economists, such as Dr. Nouriel Roubini, who predicted the 2008 housing crisis, are now forecasting a resurgence of stagflation in the coming months and years.
The Fed made it clear on November 2nd that they will continue to raise interest rates to choke off today's 8% inflation rate.
This will definitely reduce spending, and eventually could lower interest rates, but at what cost?
"Brace for stagflation that combines recession and high unemployment with high inflation that stifles job growth," warns Dr. Roubini, in his new book, Megathreats. "Forty years ago the Federal Reserve raised policy rates to almost 20 percent. That solution. . .caused a severe double-dip recession. . .It would be fatal today, given the debt trap we are in now. With inflation simmering and surging, any persistent policy rate changes that reduce growth and increase the cost of money to fight inflation can shock us back into stagflation and a debt crisis if other negative supply shocks emerge."
The shock will come because the scale of current financial bubbles and the amount of interest rate sensitive global debt is astronomical, mind-boggling and unsustainable.
Global debt will reach 350% of Global Gross Domestic Product, or yearly economic output, by 2030.
Economists generally say that a debt/GDP ratio much above 100 places a country in the danger zone, and could trigger recession, debt defaults, increased inflation, and loss of confidence in governments and financial institutions.
Of course, smaller, less developed countries are at the greatest risk when a debt crisis hits.
That's why the United Nations predicts that 70% of developing countries face default in the next few years.
Worst of all, financial markets and central bankers seem to be suffering from the effects of Mars retrograde in Gemini square Neptune in Pisces, a pernicious aspect we will be enduring til early spring 2023.
Photo of Mars, courtesy of NASA, public domain.
Mars in Gemini can indicate intense energy perfect for multi-tasking, but can also signify scattered energy, poor execution of multiple poorly conceived initiatives, and a tendency to self-harm through ignorance and rash behavior.
Neptune in Pisces can symbolize towering spiritual aspirations, transpersonal experiences of Unity with the web of life or the collective consciousness of humanity.
This aspect also can correlate with a tsunami of propaganda delivered by large institutions, and fanatical devotion on the part of collectives of true believers who foment intolerance, social divisions and even wars of choice.
So it is possible that with Mars square Neptune at this time, and for months to come, financial markets and the Fed could simply be living in their own separate realities, each in a fog, out of touch with one another, and out of touch with the truth about our current financial crisis.
Financial markets have been unable to believe that the Fed is serious about raising interest rates high enough for long enough to crush the worst inflation we've seen in decades.
The result has been a series of bull trap bear market rallies that sucked in optimistic, bullish investors who believed the market had reached rock bottom, only to sustain massive losses when the Fed raised interest rates yet again.
Even now, many traders, investors and speculators are certain that at some point the Fed will blink, frightened of the potential debt crisis that higher rates could trigger, and pivot to lower rates and easy money.
Economist Nouriel Roubini believes that eventually the Fed will have to blink, because something important in financial markets will break, causing a disaster. For now, the way forward for the Fed, the economy, and financial markets is blanketed in a thick fog of incomprehension, fear, and groupthink.
"[Central bankers] are damned either way," Roubini explained to Der Spiegel International. Either they fight inflation with high policy rates and cause a hard landing for the real economy and the financial markets. Or they wimp out and blink, don't raise rates and inflation keeps rising. I think the Fed and the European Central Bank will blink – as the Bank of England has already done."
It would not be unusual for the Fed to end up with a roller coaster monetary policy.
The Fed's recent policy U-turn in 2018 is a good example of the central bank's long history of notorious roller coaster monetary policy adjustments, which have led to vicious economic and financial market volatility time and again over the last 100 years.
The Fed has certainly played a large part in the ongoing drama that has spawned the 21st Century's recurring global financial bubbles and economic crises, as we have seen as we reviewed its track record over the last twenty years.
Today's spiraling global inflation is driven in large part by a decade of super low interest rates, pandemic bailouts by governments around the world, and supply side shocks caused by deglobalization and sanctions triggered by the Ukraine War.
The Fed has no policy tools to address these issues, and so it intends to lower inflation by tanking the housing market and raising unemployment rates enough to throw millions out of work.
That makes no sense, since it is primarily electricity and housing costs and corporate price gouging that are driving inflation worldwide, not the wages paid at Amazon warehouses, Marriott hotels and Starbucks franchises all across America.
Barista at the Esino Lario Tabak froths a pitcher of milk to make cappuccino
Daniel Case, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
"The rise in wage costs adjusted for productivity since the end of 2019 is somewhere between 5 and 6 per cent," reports the Financial Times. "Restaurant and hotel prices have risen 16 per cent. This is the current inflation story. Companies have passed higher costs on to customers. But they have also taken advantage of circumstances to expand profit margins. The broadening of inflation beyond commodity prices is more profit margin expansion than wage cost pressures."
Logically there is no substantive policy reason for the Fed to target wage laborers in its war against inflation.
But the Fed is doing the same thing it's always done when its easy money policies have contributed to the creation of financial crises in the past. Raise rates, tank the housing market, raise unemployment, and then eventually you get lower demand, lower borrowing, lower spending, lower wages, and lower interest rates.
That's the long term plan. Right now, the Fed is in a debt trap. That's what markets and Roubini realize all too well.
Dominicus Johannes Bergsma, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
If the Fed continues their war on inflation, they risk a major recession, a recurrent acute financial crisis, or the onset of full blown stagflation.
If they don't continue their war on inflation, the Everything Bubble that has consumed global financial markets will eventually reach unsustainable levels, inflation will be unstoppable, and a repeat of the global financial crisis unavoidable.
With inflation at around 8% and rising, the Fed might have to raise rates by 10-12% for a year or more before declaring victory in its war on inflation. Don't forget 1981, when inflation was over 10% and interest rates over 16%. Yeh, it seems impossible, but it has happened before and it can happen again.
The Fed has had to raise rates until it breaks some things, and then inflation comes down.
Fed Chairman Powell knows this and in his speech announcing the November interest rate hikes, he seemed to clearly see major turmoil ahead. He offered little to no hope that America could avoid recession and a stiff rise in unemployment, as a result of the Fed's war on inflation.
Federalreserve, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
“No one expects that bringing about a soft landing will be straightforward in the current context—very little is straightforward in the current context,” Chairman Powell announced. Can you say Mars Retrograde in Gemini square foggy Neptune in Pisces?
Monetary policy is a "blunt instrument, not capable of surgical precision,” Mr. Powell added. “My colleagues and I will do our very best to succeed in this challenging task.”Chairman Powell reminded his audience that the Fed has a variety of tools in its toolkit in the event that rising interest rates create a hard landing and there are major problems in the economy or markets.
Those central bank tools will certainly include the usual suspects: lowering interest rates to near zero and maintaining an easy money regime for a decade or so; flooding the biggest banks with free cash; and buying up stocks, bonds and corporate debt, so their price rises.
But will those tools be workable in tomorrow's post Uranus-Saturn square, post Pluto Return America?
Will those tools be workable after huge numbers of countries, banks, investors, speculators, hedge funds, and major corporations with too much variable interest rate or short term debt are thrown into default? All those entities will see their interest rate costs skyrocket.
A lot could go wrong for a lot of people, because the total of private and public debt in America is more than 85 trillion dollars.
America's GDP in 2021 was 23 trillion dollars. America's debt to GDP ratio is around 370%, when the rule of thumb is that a ratio much above 130% could be dangerous.
Of course the dollar is the world's reserve currency, and America is the global financial hegemon. America enjoys all the privileges and powers that dollar hegemony implies, so the general rules about debt and deficits don't really apply. And as we saw already, the average nation has about 340% debt/GDP ratio these days, so America is about average in that regard.
But the questions remain.
Can the Fed avoid the debt trap, or will its war on inflation cause another Global Financial Meltdown or a Greater Recession?
And will the Fed's toxic medicine put the patient, the US economy, and US workers, into the hospital? Above all, will the Fed's Old Time Medicine still work in a world awash in interest sensitive debts, where pandemics rage, with a hot war unfolding in Europe, while globalization is being replaced by regional power blocks, disrupting global supply chains?
Chris Alban Hansen, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Or will the Fed just be blowing more bubbles, increasing inequality, and enriching big banks and Wall Street firms?
After all, that has always worked in the past.
Meanwhile, you can expect to see currencies, nations, too big to fail banks, major corporations, and central bankers being challenged to survive in a tumultuous environment featuring stomach churning swings in values and prices and the constant threat of market meltdowns.
But when we turn away from dire financial and geopolitical news, and focus on the celestial dome, all is not gloom and doom for us in the near future.
On November 23, just in time for the Thanksgiving holiday, the New Moon, Venus and Mercury are conjunct in Sagittarius, the sign of mutable, subtle fire energy, just minutes before retrograde Jupiter stations direct in Pisces and then moves forward into fellow fire sign Aries. This creates a harmonious trine that could charge up our emotional batteries after the big energetic drain caused by the Blood Moon Eclipse T-Square.
Star Chart of Sagittarius
John Flamsteed , Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
That's a better solution than just raging and storming about, which is certainly another possibility during the long Mars in Gemini Retrograde, in effect until early spring 2023. But with Neptune in Pisces square Mars, it's especially important to be aware of brain fog, subtle efforts to subvert your discernment, and public relations propaganda.
Unfortunately, this pleasant picture dissolves pretty quickly, and by the end of November and into December, we can foresee aspects that correlate with extremely challenging times.
The Sun, Venus and Mercury in Sagittarius will oppose Retrograde Mars in Gemini, and all four planets will square Neptune in Pisces, creating a Monster Mutable T-Square. This is the Tilt-A-Whirl configuration we've seen before. It is synonymous with mass panic, dizzy thinking, over-stimulation, and loss of balance. The mass consciousness will be in an uproar!
Tilt A Whirl, 2010 NM State Fair
John Fowler from Placitas, NM, USA, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
This mutable planet mash-up is delivering an important message from the Universe. It's time for us to put aside our anger, grievances, scapegoating and aggressions, no matter how righteous we see our cause to be.
It's time to shift perspective, to allow ourselves to partake of the mut-able energies and channel them into a positive personal and collective transmut-ation that is required by the multiple crises affecting America and the entire world at this time.
Our habitual ways of seeing and being in the world are no longer adequate to meet the challenges of the 21st Century.
We are witnessing the collapse of the uber-consumerist Global Cheap Hydrocarbon Civilization established in the 1950s, and we must urgently seek a transition to a sustainable, down-sized, post-consumer New Age of Right Human Relations, Green Energies and respect for the global Web of Life.
The conflict implicit in the image of the waning Uranus-Saturn square is amplifying the effects of America's Pluto Return, and creating multiple existential crises at home and abroad. The collective consciousness is foggy, angry and aggressive, as you could expect with Mars retrograde in Gemini square Neptune in Pisces.
These potent, perilous aspects will be on the wane by the spring, but until then, it's time to buckle up. Your pilot detects Level 9 turbulence immediately ahead.
Jane and I send you love and light and Reiki blessings, and we affirm that you receive the grace and guidance you require to navigate troubled waters.
We will join you this month and next in doing all we can to further develop our powers of discernment.
In this global turmoil, discernment is our magic wand, our scrying sphere, our talisman of protection, our magic mirror and our healing stone.
Meditation Moment: Discernment, by Omraam Mikhael Aivanhov
Try to develop a kind of inner example that will help you to be able to evaluate with certainty all the conditions, things or beings that present themselves to you.
You will then be able to feel whether committing to a particular person, accepting a particular offer or embarking on a particular enterprise will take you closer to or farther away from your spiritual ideal. This can simply be called discernment.
This ability to discern is more a matter of sensation than understanding. It is something that is very difficult to explain; it can also be called intuition.
You can develop this ability through observation, reflection, meditation, prayer and, especially, vigilance.
It is important to analyse each experience to see where you stand with it.
By making every effort to develop this faculty – this inner example or radar – you will increase your ability to make the right decisions and choices.