PLURSQs Compared: 1870s 2010s Introduction

Category: Measuring History via Synodic Pairs
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Written by Tony Dickey Hits: 7540

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A Dispruptive Legacy?

PLURSQ stands for Uranus-Pluto square, the transit when Uranus travels within a few degrees of 90° or 270° relative to 18770212-Uranus-90-PlutoPluto. These appear relatively seldom. The entire Uranus-Pluto cycle varies between 111 and 141 years. Uranus-Pluto hard aspects, conjunctions (0°), oppositions (180°)  and squares (90°) coincide with some of history's critical turning points such as the Assassination of Julius Caesar and the twin 1450s event,  the  Fall of Constantinople and Gutenberg's Bible . The 1870s--Uranus was effectively square Pluto from 1874 to 1880--qualifies as equally critical. The foundations of World War I, United States hegemony and the Information Age all set during the dizzying 1870s.


1870s 2010s Compared

The Uranus-Pluto squares of the 1870s and the 2010s appear at the same relative position, 90°, literally the opposite of 270°. (closing square) The distinction is important. An opening (90°) appears at the midpoint of the waxing segment of the cycle. The first 180° of any cycle deals with becoming or acquiring; the second half is one or release or making way. It is interesting though that the last three Uranus-Pluto squares each coincided with global economic downturns. Overall, we get a chance to test the concept. How similar can Uranus-Pluto opening squares be?basicwave-arc

The Irrevocable 1870s

The importance of the 1870s arises from how so many events vectored irrevocably in new directions. The Franco-Prussian War at its beginning turned France and Germany into certain enemies, simultaneously creating a huge powerful state at the center of Europe; the Second Reich was larger than today's Germany, encompassing parts of Poland and other regions. It rode in on and propelled the Second Industrial Revolution, setting up the slow decline of the British Empire. Germany did this as the United States brought Civil War, Reconstruction to a close.

The  process of aligning the South to Northern Industrial interests removed international influence over the US, drastically reducing the price of cotton worldwide. All of this came just after completion of the first Transcontinental railroad and the Suez Canal. Both carried a simultaneous effect: it released the interior of continents to the global markets, with immediate effect

A combination of Bismarck's naive economic policies and a railroad bubble brought the first global market crash, the 1873 Panic of Vienna. It ushered in the Long Depression of 1873-1893. This helped bring Britain's eventual decline; its First Industrial Revolution turned into a burden. The US and Germany could use new technology without scraping or adapting embedded systems. Additionally, both nations could draw from larger internal population and resource bases.
There is much more to the 1870s narrative.The rest will appear in one form or another (expect some videos) throughout the comparison series. The important question here is the whether or not the sea change of the 1870s is anywhere close to what we can expect for the current decade.

2010s: What is a Turning Point?

1966Uranus-90-Neptune2104Obviously, the 2010s are not over. I am breaking a cardinal rule of analyzing current events in historical terms. Measuring History already breaks the rules of standard historiography, so here it goes.

One thing for certain about the 2010s: United States power around the world is in question. Many reasons lie behind this perception, but we can be sure that by the time this Uranus-Pluto square effectively ends, US power will be far different than before it began. Perhaps the main reason is that China, if it has not already, will become the world's number one economy. Some may point to dysfunctional politics for the time Uranus has squared Pluto. More astute analysis reveals the shift has been in motion for quite some. Best summarized, the world has entered a multi-lateral phase. It is at its beginning.
China's rise parallels the history of Digital Age Globalization. The process simultaneously empowers and levels the field. The 2014 Ukranian Crisis highlights it labyrinthine ramifications. The US sanctions Russia, but EU nations hesitate for fear of losing Russian gas and exports; Russia cooperates with the US on space programs and Iran nuclear talks. Meanwhile, long term foes Russia and China sign a natural gas export deal. India and China announce hope of greater cross-border cooperation; both India and China derive huge profits from the United States and Europe, but the US and China are in dispute over the South China Sea and islands disputed by Japan and The Philippines.
In the 1870s, European nations began their practice of dividing the world among themselves. In the 2010s, the dimensions multiply; competition has truly become a global affair. Paradoxically, it is competition that requires cooperation on many levels.