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Has The Second Progressive Age Begun?
December 19, 2012


History Repeats -- But Not Exactly
      The thesis for The Celestial Wheel's long term U.S* forecasting are three planetary cycles in the U.S. chart, repeating now from the nineteenth century.  These are the 10 year Moon, then 7 year Mars and finally 17 year Rahu -- Gilded Age to economic contraction to Progressive Age.

     I discovered this three-Dasa sequence repetition after the 2004 presidential election, when G.W. Bush unexpectedly beat John Kerry.  That simply didn't make any sense!  Too many people voted against their own interests.  I went into a month-long seclusion to detail the U.S. chart's history via its Dasas -- beginning at the country's birth in 1776.  From this effort, I discovered the three-Dasa sequence from a century ago is repeating now.  In 2004, the U.S. was in the height of the greedy Second Gilded Age.  G.W. Bush won, not because he was the better candidate, but rather because he fit as a Gilded Age President. 

     While this underlying pattern is used for all forecasting, I've elaborated on it in a series of In-depth Forecasts on the home page, the section, History Repeats Series -- Gilded Age To Contraction To Progressive Age

(*The U.S. is so influential is sets global patterns)

      One of those In-depth Forecasts in the series is the December 1, 2007, Through The Second Gilded Age

     Here's a screen shot (picture) of all the U.S. Dasas from that forecast.  (Note: The U.S. was running Moon Dasa then, which is why the Moon is highlighted red.)

     The 1890's First Gilded Age 10 year peak (Moon) was followed by a severe economic retraction in the 1890s (7 year Mars).  The First Progressive Age began in 1901 under Teddy Roosevelt (Rahu).

     We experienced the Second Gilded Age ( Moon) from 1998 to 2008.  We are are currently mired in what I've called The Millennium Contraction (Mars) until 2015  Following the pattern, the Second Progressive Age will begin in 2015 (Rahu).

     However, history repeats, but not exactly.  The Dasas provide a rough sketch, and outline.  Transits further impact.  But as the nation has matured socially, culturally and technologically, the planetary influences actualize somewhat differently in this timing.  The artist is using a different palette. 

United States Dasas

The First Gilded Age Bought Elections
     First Gilded Age robber barons bought the election of 1896 -- William Mckinley won and trust-buster William Jennings Bryan lost.     

     Here's what happened.  Andrew Carnegie, J.P. Morgan and John D. Rockefeller were so worried about Bryan breaking up their monopolies, they set aside their decades-long competition to cooperate by giving Mckinley big checks.  This strategy worked again in the election of 1900.  The robber baron trio also thought that increasingly troublesome Roosevelt would be made powerless as Vice President in McKinley's second term.  Of course, at beginning of McKinley's second term a bullet brought him down, and Vice President Roosevelt took his place.  Roosevelt began the First Progressive Age -- restoring shared democratic values.  The first thing he did was break up the trusts -- the monopolies own by Carnegie, Morgan, Rockefeller and others.   (Note: Rahu Dasa, bringing greed but also turmoil, had begun late in 1895.  Rahu, as per his nature as the head-of-the-dragon eclipse point, gave the robber barons victories, but then snatched them away a few years later.  Never trust a snake to stay on your side.) 

     The History Channel recently ran a series, Men Who Built America.  The final segment described these elections and Roosevelt's trust busting.  It also discussed Henry Ford, who followed the robber barons' horrific labor practices with a progressive labor philosophy -- doubling wages, the 40 hour work week...


Buying Presidential Elections Didn't Work Again
    This time, however, the Second Gilded Age robber barons couldn't buy the election.  The Kochs and others, many with family ties going back to the nineteenth century, failed in bankrolling Romney.  The Republicans were astounded, shocked!  The couldn't believe their dollar democracy failed!  They didn't see the brown people breeding so fast, then voting for that black man again!  Everyone hated Obama, right?  In truth, only the angry white men did, which is a big reason why the Republicans thought they couldn't lose.  They are angry white men too!  Does this mean Obama's second term begins the Second Progressive Age -- restoring shared democratic values?

     Obviously, it could be.  And the additional factor that President Obama finished his 16 year Jupiter Dasa this past July, and then began is 19 year Saturn Dasa, is confirmation.  Obama's Jupiter is fallen (weak), indicating wisdom and fortune are not favored, even as Jupiter pumped up his popularity by aspecting his great exalted Moon in the fifth house of creative intelligence and kingship.  Certainly during his first term, he made misjudgments.  Pushing health care was ill timed, for the economy was tanking.  He also was too optimistic and diplomatic, allowing the opposition to role over him because they knew he would blink.  He let the Second Gilded Age criminal politicians and banksters off the hook.  Of course, Jupiter's wealth was injured in Obama's chart, reflected the nation's economic dive.  Obama's first term could not launch the Second Progressive Age.

     Saturn is very powerful for Obama.  It brings out another side, determined to protect America, for his second term.  It's almost like he became a different person.  Obama's Saturn reorients him to support the common man, increases his authority and will, makes him more realistic and most importantly -- tough.  Now faced with opposition yet again in raising taxes on the rich, Obama is holding firm.


The Second Progressive Is Early Born 
    Obama's refusing to bend on raising taxes on the top 2% signals the birth of the Second Progressive Age.  It is huge deal, a sea change in American politics.  It turns back the three-decade Republican outgoing tide of lowering taxes -- that has put the country into the red and enriched the rich by shifting wealth and income from the middle class and poor.  This is an incoming tide of increasing tax revenues to meet the shortfall.  Lowering taxes is an obvious boon for the rich, allowing them to gain more and more economic power.  Money begets more money when taxes are too low.  The rich simply outpaced the rest of the country.  The Second Gilded Age monied interests had previously been successful in their appeal to the libertarians, convincing them high taxes took way their freedoms and fueled socialism.  Psychologically, they took the reigns of American's inborn distrust of authority and mystical paranoia and turned that horse into calvary anger against government.  

     While the anti tax argument worked to elect McKinley in 1896 and 1900, and it worked for the last three decades in the U.S. -- until Obama in Saturn Dasa effectively rebuked it in this central campaign theme -- raising taxes on the top 2%.  This was truly great strategy in attacking the foundation of the Second Gilded Age monied interests at the source of their increased wealth -- and exposing their selfish greed to the public.    

     Tax increases are again being understood as just one more expense among many.  People have expenses for shelter, food, energy, clothing, education, taxes..... Businesses have similar expense -- buildings, energy, cost of goods, labor, taxes.....  Nobody goes crazy objecting to increased energy costs, for that is endemic to the global economy.  People change their lifestyles in many different ways to adjust.  Businesses do the same.  Tax increases are no different.

     While this early beginning of the Second Progressive Age is heartening, it is critical to know it is a long term social, economic and political transformation.   Its beginning does not signify economic rebound.  Economic recovery will be a result of policies and laws giving America back to all Americans.  The rich don't, and won't yield easily. The November 2012 election was merely one battle in a long war to regain equality.  Already, the Republicans have attacked Unions again, this time in the once-thought impregnable stronghold of Michigan. 

     It will take a long time to undue Second Gilded Age robber baron excesses and their impacts upon the rest of us, for the country's wealth has become so unequal  ...nearly a third of the nation’s financial assets (investment holdings) and about 28 percent of nonfinancial assets (the value of property, cars, jewelry, etc.).  Does anyone really believe the monied elite will give up any of their wealth and income without fighting hard?  Does anyone really believe there will be a quick shift of wealth and income back to the middle class and poor?  The rich don't work hard for money to eat, like the rest of us.  They work hard for money as power, and dislodging that power is a huge long term task.  Still, as some battles will be lost, more will be won, and Progressives will slowly gain by increments.

     Here's an cogent example of the time and effort it will take to restore shared democratic values.  In 1895, the Supreme Court struck down the national income tax Lincoln put in place to pay for the Civil War.  It wasn't until 1913 that a constitutional amendment was passed by the people authorizing an income tax.  This article gives the history of the income tax, Sixteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.

     Consider also the latest mass murder using an assault weapon, the Connecticut elementary school killings.  As horrific as that is, it has the benefit of raising the alarm to reinstate the assault weapon ban that lapsed in 2004 under G.W. Bush.  It is true that Americans are decent people and can only be fooled by the NRA and its ilk for so long  And truly, the NRA only became reactionary under Charlton Heston, who wasn't so bad when he only took the role of Moses too seriously.  Heston fell of the cliff completely after he played the Old Testament God, and believing that roll too well.  Remember, the NRA was an educational organization supporting safe use of guns -- before Charlton God decided that men had the right to take the law into their own hands using guns.  Charlton God believed the Second Amendment was really about men with guns protecting themselves from big government taking away their freedoms -- especially guns.  And just one gun restriction would pave the way for the Feds to take away all our guns!  (It's like the argument that marijuana is a gateway drug.)  Is reinstating the ban against assault weapons another Second Progressive Age victory in the making?  If it is, that victory will deal the Second Gilded Age monied interests another major blow -- for lowering taxes and promoting guns are key concepts in their psychological tricks that have duped poor whites into becoming angry, then fearful, and Evangelicals desperately expecting Armageddon, fearful.  Vote for us, and we will protect you from these big government, big taxing anti gun Democrats. 

     How about comprehensive immigration reform, shrinking the military, building infrastructure, improving education...  That these are already being seriously discussed is good news for the blossoming of the Second Progressive Age.  


The Millennium Contraction & Hope
      As explained above, beginning the Second Progressive Age does not correlate with short term with economic recovery.  It will take years and years of many battles against Second Gilded Age monied interests to institute better policies to restore shared democratic values.  It will take more time for wealth and income for these policies to shift extreme wealth back from the wealthy elite, to lift up the middle class and the economy in general. 

     An amazing thing about Roosevelt via the courts, busting Rockefeller's Standard Oil Monopoly is in breaking it up into some thirty companies, of which Rockefeller owned stock, he became even richer.  That isn't good in itself, but naturally other folks gained wealth as well, and it demonstrated monopolies restrict business and are undemocratic by definition in harming economic freedom.

    Too, although the Second Progressive Age seems to have begun, that doesn't mean the fated economic contraction following the Second Gilded Age is over.  The July, 2010 Through The Millennium Contraction, explained this.  Here's a key excerpt,

     I'll state it again in a different way, so that you really get that the economy is still on the ropes, and it will get worse again..  The current U.S. Dasa planets of Mars with Mercury until May 2013 signifies economic turmoil.  Mars/Ketu which follows, lasts until late October 2013.  Ketu, is a dissolving spiritual influence, following his being the tail-of-the-dragon eclipse point.  He's only good for social change, as we had when the U.S. ran Ketu's seven year cycle beginning in 1965.  Very challenging transits coming May 2013 and again late summer 2013 can topple the apple cart.  It's possible the U.S. will default on part of its debt, for being unable to finance the debt in face of inflation --higher interest rates.  Inflation will do us in, for the recovery requires continued low inflation.  

     We've seen interest rates for government debt in Europe soar in countries like Italy and Greece.  As their debt increased, and their ability to pay the debt service decreased, risk increased, which caused investors to ask for higher interest rates.  The same must happen in the U.S.  Keep in mind too that the U.S. housing crisis is not over.  There remain too many big homes, too many homeowners underwater, too many homeowners struggling, too many homes held by the banks....  As interest rates go up, so will historically low mortgage interest rates we have now.  This will push real estate down again.  The Federal Reserve's loaning money cheaply to the banks, buying up more Treasury notes and bonds and now buying up housing debt -- all to to keep interest rates low -- is not sustainable.  All those actions are merely printing money, which is inherently inflationary. 

     But as difficult and disappointing as this is, the Second Progressive Age restores a magical ingredient in the country's psyche, hope.

     As I wrote in the April 2009, Global Economic Outlook Into 2012 And Beyond,

     ...the country has strong national unity.   Throughout America's turbulent history, even during the Civil War, nothing broke the national bond. This dedication to the union can be seen in the ever-popular America Right Or Wrong.

     This quality is especially important in the U.S. dealing with its repeated booms and busts.  Great wealth is built.  Then, a terrible bust comes that would tear apart any other nation.  But the country shakes off the failure and pulls together to harnessing its wealth to regain prosperity.  Other nations and cultures must believe America is endlessly excessive and crazy for this, but Americans just revel in the great opportunities and believe they can always recoup.


     Note:  if there is any value to the Mayan Calendar-end devotees, it is those who believe this signals a shift in consciousness.  That dovetails with the beginning of the Second Gilded Age.  Otherwise, it's just as deluded as the Christian nuts looking around every corner for the Anti-Christ signalling Armageddon is upon us!  But hey, don't rob these folks of their delusions.  They love their delusions.  Besides, it's how their ministers, priests and other false gurus make all their money!  And not to worry, after the world doesn't end 12/21/12, a new fear of imminent catastrophe will come.  Anyone worried yet about the astroid collision in 2029?  No.  You should be.  Hey, that's only 17 years away, and you know how time flies! 



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Doug Riemer