La belle France is very much in the news right now. They are suffering union strikes affecting the delivery of fuel to garages causing a national transportation crisis and floods across the country are also causing disruption and worry. Add this into the fact that in one week the Euro 2016 football championships are due to be held in France and thousands of football fans from across the continent will be travelling to the nation and there seems to be a perfect storm brewing there.
France as a nation is notorious for union strikes and mass public action whenever the rights of the people are threatened by government action, so why is this? Well, if you take the national French motto of “Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité” (freedom, equality and fraternity) first uttered by Robespierre, the leader of the 1792 revolution and apply it to the national horoscope you start to see why. On this chart, we see Jupiter and Neptune in a conjunction together and immediately you think of freedom to do what you want. These two planets in any connection want to explore and not be held back in any way. On the French chart you see Venus in Libra unconnected to any other planet, it is unaspected. Venus is in it's home sign here so it is strong and as you will know Libra is the sign of the scales, of balance and of equality. Venus is also the planet of love relationships; it is a social planet in the sign of relationships Libra. This focus on love and being together fulfils the last of the qualities that he wished to see embodied in the new Republican nation of France.
Now that social sticking together as one, the equality embodied in the psyche of the French and the need for freedom from restriction is even more clear when you see that the chart is ruled by Saturn, the administrator and natal Saturn sits opposed to the Jupiter/Neptune opposition. The government and the administrators of the nation will always be opposed by the unions and collectives of the country (Neptune) who are bold and adventurous and unafraid of taking action (Jupiter) if they feel things aren't fair. When one union has a grievance, everyone else comes out in support of them as well, and so widespread disobedience causes shutdowns and strikes. This aspect also shows the constant troubles the French have with immigrants (Jupiter) and Islam and latterly terrorism (Neptune). As it is, there is a really rebellious streak within the French with Mars at the point of a Pluto Uranus opposition forming a brutal t-square. Every so often that rebellious streak will rear it's ugly head again.
So what's causing the upset at the moment in the country? Well transiting Uranus is currently square to the French Ascendant and when the planet of shocks and disruption gets to work on any chart let alone this one, then you know trouble is looming. Transiting Mercury is square to that Uranus Pluto opposition bringing the transport system to a halt and causing disruption and transiting Neptune is inconjunct to that unaspected natal Venus sitting in the 8th house of heavy industry, so we have social unrest, union problems and an oil shortage (Neptune rules gas and oil) as blockades shut down refineries. This aspect I feel is also responsible for the flooding that France is suffering from as water levels rise. Finally, transiting Chiron is sitting on the French South Node, so there is pain and hurt being felt as the values of the population are challenged. This conjunction occurs in the 2nd house of pay and income and the current dispute is over pay connected to the 35 hour week that the French population stoically defend. The French workers you see lose out on overtime pay when they do more than their statutory hours, and they have decided “ça suffit”, enough is enough.