David Cameron was asked today if his proposed tax breaks for married couples would also apply to same-sex civil partnerships, and you could see him swallow as he replied “Yes, of course.” He had been forced to shift his ground from marriage being good for children to commitment between 2 people being the important thing. David Cameron has been running into trouble with his party lately, and a lot of people are seeing him as a lightweight. Particularly as Gordon Brown is coming out with all sorts of policies at the moment, many of which I find myself in agreement with. Like removing the ban on protesting outside Parliament, dropping the plans to have super-casinos, introducing more flexi-time in the curriculum for secondary schools, renewing Labour’s promise to build more affordable housing, removing the Prime Minister’s right to declare war without consulting Parliament. It’s all good common-sense stuff that reflects the 10th House Saturn of his PM chart. And there’s none of the Blair razzamatazz, which is a welcome relief.
There is a whiff around the super-casinos, however: firstly of the Manse, of Brown not wanting to see people enjoying themselves; secondly, and more seriously, of authoritarianism. Having proclaimed a return to collective cabinet decision-making, he dropped the super-casinos without consulting his cabinet. It was a Brown dictat. This is the real shadow around Brown that hasn’t surfaced yet in his few weeks as PM. Some might argue that he’s got the job he wanted at last, and maybe he’ll relax now and not be so power-crazed. But I think that the way he ran the Exchequer will be the way he runs the government. Why should he change at his age?
So I’m enjoying seeing him make some good policy decisions in his early period as PM, but I am waiting for the shadow of fear and authoritarianism to return; Brown’s “sheer Stalinist ruthlessness,” as one civil servant at the Treasury, both impressed and horrified, put it.
Back to David Cameron. He has that Mercury in Scorpio square to Moon-Jupiter in Leo that I’ve been waiting to see since he became leader of the Tories. Like Brown he has Moon in Leo. We have a PM and a leader of the opposition, both of whom feel that being king is their rightful and natural place. Brown’s Moon is conjunct Pluto, so it is obsessive, as we all know. Cameron’s Leo Moon is conjunct Jupiter, so it is something he hardly has to try for, he just KNOWS it is coming his way, he was BORN to it. Brown’s conjunction to Pluto, and Cameron’s square to Scorpio Mercury both indicate an ability to conceal this hubris, while at the same time empowering it; other MPs feel it is only proper to bow to them, without perhaps quite knowing why they feel it.
On TV today Cameron was making light of his background (Eton and Oxford, married to a baronet’s daughter), even disclaiming it. At the same time his shadow cabinet is stuffed with Old Etonians. This is Mercury in Scorpio square to Moon-Jupiter in Leo: concealing (Mercury in Scorpio) his allegiance to privilege (Moon-Jupiter in Leo). I say there is nothing wrong in having had a privileged upbringing. There is lots that is great about it, you have had opportunities that others have not had, let us be happy for you. Just do not be proud. But the English are perverse and resentful. The upper class are the new lower class, a privileged upbringing is something you feel embarrassed about. And if you are a politician you downplay it, pretend you have risen above it, and then fill your cabinet with schoolmates, members of the same tribe.
My current take on David Cameron is that at heart he is a toff, he feels the privileged classes are superior and should be rewarded for their superiority. But he has the gift of the gab, he has charm (Sun and Venus in 1st House Libra), and I think he does also have some convictions: I think the environment is one of them. I think it’s time he let us know his convictions, because we’ve seen all the charm and feel-good stuff before, and it’s starting to wear thin.
The people may end up loving him, not because he is one of them, but because he is not. The English resent and love their toffs. England (1801) is a Sun in Capricorn nation, we are deeply hierarchical. But that Sun is (just about) square to Uranus rising in Libra, so we also feel ourselves to be equals. Tony Blair went to public school and then Oxford, but he could also appear to be one of the people. That was why he was so popular. When it came to the people, he knew how to have his cake and eat it.