Marc Jones, in his Essentials of Astrology,  writes James R. MacDonald is his illustration of the “see saw type” and the real creator and organizer of the Labor Party in Great Britain.  Jones for the record, was a strong progressive Democrat.

James Ramsay McDonald was born in Lossiemouth, Scotland on October 12, 1866 at 11:24 PM according to Jones.  He was the first Prime Minister in the Labour governments of 1924 and 1929–31 and then again in the national coalition government of 1931–35. He came from humble beginnings and married up (Pluto opposite Venus) and had insatiable ambitions.  Jones finishes his essay on MacDonald stating that he was not “the communicator as generally supposed.”¹

A Neptunian Problem

Despite his two oppositions he does not have a Grand Cross as they are in different quadratures.  The opposition is in Fixed Signs (Pluto to Saturn) is not too bad but could make him maudlin.  Still with the Fire of Pluto trapped in earthy Taurus against earthy Saturn in watery Scorpio, it would more likely tend to make him patient and hardworking.  The other in Cardinal signs though is stressful, and perhaps the fixed opposition actually is part of the problem, and this is why Jones felt that the “great communicator” was a misnomer — he preferred things and objects like laws and decrees over either pressing the flesh or dealing with people. Instead MacDonald did what he thought was best for the GB, and that in the end, led him to stand down.

Fiery Mars in water, rather an elemental problem, but it is also  in its detriment.  Jupiter in Capricorn, and would rather be in Cancer. Thus Jupiter restrains work relationships  by putting a burden on that Mars who already has its own maudlin  (his wife died of blood poisoning in 1911) problems (she left him with six children). 

While MacDonald gets a Fiery Grand Trine thanks to his Moon in the first house, which made him melancholy without any outside help, Chiron in the ninth house gets sympathy from Pluto, when it finally shows up, but that’s too late to do him any good while he’s actually in office.  Instead, Chiron relies on Jupiter opposite the aforementioned Mars and finds his own party questions his leadership.  Perhaps this aspect is hinting at him being conciliatory, though Labour called it “soft”.

In the end

He died in the Atlantic Ocean en route to a journey to South America from a heart attack or was it Mars in Cancer trine Saturn in Scorpio in the fifth, and inability to fully enjoy leisurely pursuits because, again!, a sextile to Jupiter in Capricorn reminding him of work he had to do with the party back home.

And true to his fixed opposition which consisted of Saturn in the fifth against Pluto, he never remarried.  It would seem no one really measured up.


  1. Jones, Marc Edmund Jones, Essentials of Astrological Analysis, pg 43.  Sabian Publishing Society, Stanwood, Washington.  Currently this book is running about $32.00 via
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