Both the Brown and Cameron honeymoons are finally over, which is a relief. Cameron’s began to end earlier this year, when he ran into trouble with his party over grammar schools, and was truly over when Gordon Brown became Prime Minister at the end of June, creating a surge in popularity for Labour.
I’d thought it might be the Mars-Pluto Opposition which did for Brown, at the Labour Party conference in Sept. Instead it was after the Tory conference in early Oct, when the Tory ‘bounce’ impacted spectacularly on Brown’s weeks of election planning, forcing him into a humiliating climbdown over his intention to hold an autumn election.
So Brown is now like a wounded animal, having been playing the capable strongman for months. With Mars in 12th House Pisces, he is not good in a straight fight, and he has always taken refuge in being seen as competent at what he does, firstly at the Treasury for 10 years, and now as PM. (Tony Blair has Mars-Jupiter Rising in Gemini, so no problem there for him).
Like Tony Blair, Brown has a Chiron-MC conjunction in Capricorn, and while on the one hand this comes out in both men as a desire to heal (Chiron) the World (MC), it also has the interpretation of damaged (Chiron) reputation (Capricorn/MC). With Blair, this damage primarily occurred during his Chiron Return, when many people lost their trust in him over the way he dealt with the Iraq War issue. Once you’ve lied you’ve lied, and just as Chiron’s wound is incurable, so too will Tony Blair always be remembered with misgivings.
Gordon Brown has already had his Chiron return, but Pluto will be conjoining his Chiron/MC for 3 years from next March. In my opinion he will, in his own way, become increasingly wounded over that period. Which doesn’t mean he can’t win the next election – Blair did so after the Iraq fiasco – but I think we will start to see his well-known faults undermining his reputation. It was extraordinary how he seemed to transmute when he became PM, as perhaps only someone with Sun in 12th House Pisces can do so, and suddenly he was the competent strongman with all those nasty rumours put behind him: his lack of ‘bottle’, his inability to communicate himself effectively, his lack of human qualities, his authoritarianism and his plotting and petty vindictiveness.
Brown knows about the dark arts in politics, and he used them to good advantage soon after he became PM, when he orchestrated a new relationship with the Bush administration over Iraq. You would hear junior ministers suggesting in public a new relationship, and then a senior minister would come in and say, “Oh no no, that wasn’t what we meant at all. We’re right behind the US.” No-one was directly offended, but the message was clear.
As a slippery Pisces he is good at this sort of thing, but as a Pisces he also doesn’t know when to stop. Like bringing forward his visit to Iraq to coincide with the Tory Conference, and making an announcement about increased troop withdrawals while he was there. This is about as unsubtle as it gets, and undermines the ‘gentleman’s agreement’ between the parties not to try and upstage each others’ conferences, which I think is good for democracy, as it gives each party a clear platform to present themselves. And the extra 1000 troops he said would be withdrawn appears in fact only to be 500 above what had previously been announced. As Cameron recently and rightly said about Brown in another context, he’s treating the British public like fools, and this is a sign of authoritarianism.
All this doesn’t stop Brown being a competent PM, and this may be his tragedy – his Chiron/MC – that he needlessly makes himself look weak and slippery, over Iraq, over the autumn election that wasn’t, when actually he is in a strong position, in which people are only too happy to trust him after the spin and lies of the Blair years. His judgement when it comes to making decisions and policies I think is good. But his personal political judgement can make him look a fool.
Brown’s natal Mars is at 22 Pisces, which Uranus will be conjoining over the next couple of years. I think he will regularly be caught off-guard, and will need to learn how to stand up and fight his opponents – rather than just retreating and blathering on about vision and policy – or Cameron, with his Mars in Leo, will run rings around him. Uranus is the awakener, and Brown has the opportunity, and necessity, to wake up his Mars.