Mercury retrogrades from 23° 52′ to 8° 19′ Aquarius, from 28 January to 18 February 2008.
The back-end shadow period lasts from 19 to 27 January 2008 and the front-end shadow period from 19 February to 9 March 2008.

This is a selected list of events that occurred during this period. It will be updated periodically until 9 March 2008.

Back-end shadow period, 19 to 27 January 2008:

  • 16 January — UN announces plans to create a $100m film fund to combat stereotypes in films
  • 19 January — more news about the British government losing sensitive data; the latest by the MoD
  • 24 January — Gordon Brown continues to deliver puzzling non-statements
  • 24 January — UK’s Work and Pensions Secretary, Peter Hain, resigns
  • 24 January — Hollywood’s admission of ‘mis-accounting
  • 24 January — rogue trader from the French Bank, Societe Generale, revealed to have cost the bank 4.9bn euros in losses
  • 27 January — ‘World’s big polluters meet in Hawaii over climate’ (not sure it’s the best time… but then it is a subject worth re-visiting)
  • 27 January — renewed calls to impeach Bush and Cheney

Retrograde period, 28 January to 19 February 2008:

  • January through February — ongoing Writers’ Guild strike in Hollywood, which can be traced back to 16th July 2007, when Mercury was rx in Cancer
  • late January through February — most open US presidential election campaign in a long time (see also this post)
  • 28 January — formal charges filed against French rogue trader, but not for fraud
  • 28 January — never-ending inquest into Princess Diana’s death goes on; am hoping for an end soon
  • 29 January — more money scandals in the Commons
  • 31 January — Undersea internet cables are cut, disrupting internet access to large parts of the Middle East and Asia
  • 2 February — Microsoft announces bid to takeover Yahoo; I ponder its implications here
  • 2 February — doctor credited with eradicating smallpox heads Google’s philanthropic programme
  • 3 February — UK PM’s office denies knowledge that an MP may have been bugged by the police while visiting a constituent in prison
  • 3 February — ‘breakthrough’ in Hollywood writers’ strike announced
  • 5 February — new study on the toxicity of baby products published
  • 5 February — eBay announces historic change to its feedback system
  • 6 February — speculation over cause of severed undersea internet cables
  • 6 February — Gordon Brown gives the ‘go-ahead’ for evidence procured by bugging to be used in UK courts
  • 9 February — military junta in Burma announce possible democratic elections in 2010
  • 10 February — Yahoo is reported to be intending to reject Microsoft’s offer as being ‘too low’.
  • 10 February — the Archbishop of Canterbury’s comments that aspects of Sharia law be incorporated into British law sparks a hullabaloo
  • 10 February — a deal to end the WGA strike appears imminent
  • 12 February — WGA strike officially ends
  • 14 February — EU plans to extend music copyright period
  • 15 February — Rupert Murdoch’s Newscorp rumoured to have entered the race for Yahoo
  • 16 February — celebrity sex scandal rages in the Chinese press and internet sites, when star sends his Mac to the repair shop, and certain salacious photos appear on the Internet; the authorities are mounting a (futile?) attempt to remove the offending images as soon as they appear
  • 17 February — Wikipedia resists demands to remove medieval images of the Prophet Muhammad
  • 18 February — Kosovo declares independence, to divided international response
  • 18 February — besieged British bank, Northern Rock, to be nationalised, fuelling further accusations of incompetence for Brown’s government
  • 19 February — Fidel Castro steps down from power in Cuba after nearly 50 years

Front-end shadow period, 19 February to 9 March 2008:

  • 21 February — HK star, embroiled in the sex scandal involving photos on his Mac, retires from the industry (also day of the lunar eclipse in Virgo)
  • 22 February — New York Times breaks news of John McCain’s alleged affair, and comes under fire for doing so
  • 24 February — Ralph Nader enters the US Presidential race
  • 24 February — Pakistan elections see landslide victory for secular and liberal parties
  • 25 February — Pakistan bans Youtube
  • 25 February — Raul Castro takes over the leadership of Cuba
  • 1 March — ongoing controversy over an anti-Islamic film made by a right-wing Dutch politician, Geert Wilders
  • 4 March — MI5 documents revealed that an astrologer was hired to deal with the Fuhrer
  • 7 March — ongoing saga over Japan’s whaling activities, including news of a secret deal
  • 8 March — Israel-Palestine conflict escalates
  • 9 March — the Democratic nomination race continues to see-saw between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, and the outcome is predicted to be close

An unsettled few weeks, exacerbated by Mars stationing direct in Gemini, no doubt. I can only describe the energy as ‘push-pull’ — not yet a stalemate, yet one couldn’t quite call it a forward movement.

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