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by Lynn Hayes
Michael Moore: a Natural Iconoclast
Whether you love him or hate him, there’s no denying that Michael Moore is a force of nature. A look at his birth chart helps to explain why.
Although Moore was born under the sign of Taurus, a sign that gives resilience and persistence as well as a deeply stubborn nature, but is associated more with serenity and stability than the kind of radical behavior Moore is known for. It is a conservative sign, a sign of tradition that abhors change, which is surprising until you discover that Moore is a staunch Catholic who trained for the priesthood. The Sun sign shows the essence of who we are rather than our personality; the rising sign (or ascendant) shows the way we are perceived by others and the style of our personality. Moore’s rising sign is Leo which illustrates his need to be recognized and seen as a special and unique individual and there is some conflict between the need for publicity of Leo and the hankering for peace and quiet of Taurus.
Pluto is rising in the first house of personality in Moore’s chart, and despite its recent reclassification, Pluto is the planet of transformation and power, bringing the death and destruction of anything that stands in the way of our evolution. Pluto can be somewhat ruthless, and individuals with Pluto rising in their chart are dealing with issues of power. This is not to say that everyone with Pluto rising is ruthless because that power can be used in a softer way to encourage rather than to manipulate, but there is an innate knowledge of the uses of power and an intensity in the personality that can be intimidating to some and offputting to many. The force of Moore’s personality is well-documented; one friend has said “he’s the type of guy who could talk Hitler into hosting a bar-mitzvah.”
Moore’s Sun sits right on the Midheaven, a point at the top of the chart which represents our highest goals and aspirations. The Midheaven is the cusp of the tenth house of career and public life, and the Sun here shows a need for individual self-expression to manifest in a very public way. The Sun rules Moore’s Leo ascendant, and its exalted placement at the top of the chart illustrates Moore’s need to project his own personality through his work. Moore is very present in all of his films; they are as much about Michael Moore as the subject matter. However, he remains extremely secretive about his personal life and past as we would expect with Pluto in the first house. Moore’s slovenly appearance is likely part of the mystique created by Pluto and his attempt to hide while living a very public life.
Despite the supreme confidence of Moore’s Sun on the Midheaven, it is opposed by Saturn, planet of disappointment and isolation, which suggests not only that he is deeply serious despite the comedic aspect of his Leo rising personality, but also indicates that he has experienced loneliness, depression, and an inability to connect with others. Saturn sits on the nadir which is the lowest point of the chart, the cusp of the fourth house of home and family. Very little is known about Moore’s parents or his early childhood, but Saturn on the nadir in opposition to the Sun indicates that it was not a happy one. It’s not surprising that despite his extreme publicity he describes himself as an introvert.
Mars is also strong in Moore’s chart; it conjoins his Moon in Capricorn, testifying to his disciplined work ethic and need (Moon) to achieve something of worth (Capricorn), but also that he is emotionally prickly and feisty (Moon/Mars). Mars is also the ruler of his Aries Mercury, and the trine (harmonious aspect) of the Moon/Mars conjunction to Mercury bestows an ability to express his views with sensitivity as well as energy, confidence, and a bit of arrogance.
The revolutionary thinker is shown by the square of Uranus (radical change) to Mercury which indicates a person who is always questioning and never satisfied with conventional wisdom, and with Uranus in the 12th house of unconscious motivation that radical impulse is always just beneath the surface of his awareness, ready to strike against the status quo.
Challenging the establishment has never been popular, but the radicals of yesterday are often the wise men of tomorrow. Michael Moore’s most recent film Sicko has received acclaim from the left and the right alike; perhaps his day is coming.