Venus and Pluto

Two very different manifestations of the Venus-Pluto square took place yesterday, with women squaring off against the powers-that-be.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was criticized by China (which is kind of a badge of honor) for remarking about the “many brave Tibetans who have sacrificed their lives fighting for freedom.” The Chinese think that Pelosi ought to keep quiet about their “internal affairs.” It’s kind of like a female Davey up against a very weird Goliath.

But it didn’t make big news even in the realm of U.S.-China relations, which was sparked up in the midst of the tense Mars station. That’s because the U.S. listed China up there with North Korea and other human-rights violators. China shot back that the U.S. has a terrible human rights record itself.

The Chinese did mention our world-leading domestic incarceration rate, but they put their focus on the sub-prime lending debacle and the ensuing economic problems for the world economy. Apparently making bad loans is not only bad business according to the Chinese, it is a human rights violation on par with the Chinese’ own practices of executing people (for all kinds of things) and harvesting their organs for sale while the victims are still alive.

The other Venus-Pluto manifestation that I caught was the bizarre story of “Jihad Jane,” a Pennsylvania suburbanite with no apparent religious leanings, who began making friends (and plans with friends) on the internet. Just plain weird...