An interesting out-of-bounds Mars

On Tuesday morning news sources announced the death at age 81 of former Argentine president Fernando de la Rua, who served a very brief term of office during the severe financial crisis in Argentina.  The earliest report I could find was from ABC News at 8:02 AM ET, so I assume that his death (from cardiac problems and kidney disease) occurred not long before 8 AM ET, which would have been 9 AM in Argentina.

According to ABC News: “De la Rúa served from 1999 to December 2001 when he infamously escaped by helicopter from the rooftop of the pink presidential palace. It came after days of violent protests against his handling of the crisis amid rioting that caused dozens of deaths across Argentina.”

Other reports paint an interesting picture of the former president.  In 1999 the New York Times wrote (bold print mine):

They call me boring,” says the Mayor of Buenos Aires, Fernando de la Rua, in the opening of his presidential campaign’s signature television commercial. The spot then cuts to some more exciting personalities: first, President Carlos Saul Menem posing in a flashy Ferrari and then an actor who it implies is a political ally of Mr. Menem pocketing a bribe.   …   Mr. de la Rua takes every opportunity to contrast himself with Mr. Menem and to tie his principal opponent, the Buenos Aires Governor, Eduardo Duhalde, to the departing President and his glitzy style of politics. Mr. de la Rua’s campaign offers few detailed proposals beyond the promise of a more sober future, but the blandness appears to be a winning message at a time of mounting Government scandals, street crime and unemployment.    …     

We need to project austerity,” Mr. de la Rua concluded. ‘     …

Austerity seems to come naturally to Mr. de la Rua, a dour man of few words who appears uneasy kissing strangers or even exchanging small talk on the campaign trail. His nickname, ”chupete,” or pacifier, originated from the teasing he got as a child for his bulbous nose, but now it has come to be the proud moniker for his bland personality. His campaign van, known as the chupete-mobile, is undecorated save for a single photograph of a statue of the Virgin Mary.

I’m really a university professor more than a politician,” said Mr. de la Rua during an interview in the chupete-mobile driving across sprawling cattle ranches in central Cordoba Province. ”I do serious things and I do them seriously.”


Most astrologers would hardly regard as characteristic of the planet Mars the projection of oneself as bland, boring, serious, remote, austere and having the public image of a baby’s pacifier and a devotee of the Virgin Mary.  Let’s look at the birth chart to see what role Mars plays there.

Mars in this chart lies in the 5th house, a fortunate house, but Mars lacks essential dignity and is therefore peregrine.  In addition, Mars lies in square aspect to his stellium of Neptune-Mercury-Sun in Virgo and is also in quincunx to the Ascendant degree, suggesting difficulties integrating the qualities of Mars into his personality.  There is a quite favorable trine from Venus in Leo to Mars in Sagittarius.  Mars rules his 9th house of higher education, and he views himself as a university professor.

At first glance, it’s puzzling why Mars in fiery Sagittarius should come across as boring, austere, serious and bland.  Looking further into the chart, we find that Mars is “out of bounds,” meaning that its declination lies outside the maximum declination (distance from the Equator) of the Sun.  The declination of Mars in this chart is 25S36, well beyond the 23S27 maximum of the Sun.

Much has been written about out of bounds planets.  An excellent overview can be found in a video by David Cochrane who explains that people with out of bounds planets often appear detached from the usual routine: “they see the normal lives of people very well but prefer not to be in the normal life.”   It’s as if the out of bounds planet dwells, or expresses itself, in a different reality.

In the case of Fernando de la Rua, his method of asserting himself (a Mars quality) was to project himself as a baby sucking on a pacifier and worshiping the Virgin Mary — as bland, boring, severe and austere — quite “out of bounds” for a typical politician.

To conclude, let me present his solar return for the current year superimposed around his natal chart.

A couple of things stand out in this figure.  Transiting Pluto (lord of the underworld and a symbol of death) in the solar return almost exactly opposes his natal ascendant.  The Ascendant of the solar return conjoins transiting Neptune in the return and both occupy the 8th house of death.  Solar return Saturn, which rules the natal 8th of death, closely squares natal Saturn in the natal 8th house from the natal 6th house of illness.  It appears that the solar return for the 2018-2019 period indicates chronic illness (return Saturn in the natal 6th) terminating his his demise (natal Saturn in the 8th).




About Anthony Louis

Author of books about astrology and tarot, including TAROT PLAIN AND SIMPLE, HORARY ASTROLOGY, and THE ART OF FORECASTING WITH SOLAR RETURNS.
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2 Responses to An interesting out-of-bounds Mars

  1. Kilaya says:

    I have found virgo planets and 6th house planets to lend a boring external appearance or mannerisms, all from Virgo the “virgin,” of course, modest, staid, etc. The 5th house mars would tell me a risk taking attitude geared to make him famous. The out of bounds quality amplifies the dramatic 5th house quality (that the helicopter rescue would demonstrate). Chart tells me that he was good at what he did. Bad timing.

  2. Thanks for the comments. You make a good point. Ascendant ruler Moon in a practical no-nonsense Earth sign (Capricorn) in the 6th could well describe his outward demeanor. The out-of-bounds Mars in Sagittarius in the 5th is disposed by Jupiter, also in earthy Capricorn in the 6th, which no doubt filters the expression of fiery Mars through an “earthy” and Saturnian 6th house lens.

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