Is this Ms Media?
The incoming DCMS minister, Tessa Jowell, is a clean-living
busy-bee Virgo, but her horoscope suggests she lacks the
star qualities needed to run the 'Ministry of Fun'.
As a clean-living, busy-bee Virgo (September 17 1947), Tessa has
all the practical skills and desire to serve which are associated
with this sign, as well as its keen interest in health issues.
Never one for the limelight herself, the Virgin is a good
administrator and likes to feel useful. She is centred in the
world of small, everyday concerns, hard-working and
conscientious, forever restless and fussy in her efforts to
perfect a myriad of on-going tasks. It's no surprise to an
astrologer to hear that this Virgo juggles an intense working
week with a busy family life, and in her spare time makes quilts
and jam. She says she listens to the radio but doesn't watch much
TV. That's fine for Virgo, slightly worrying for a media
She describes herself as having "inherited my mother's steel",
but although this reflects an iron Mars in maternal Cancer, its
metal is not easily fashioned into a lethal weapon. Her horoscope
is too fluid and adaptable to lock into battle, and with lots of
Libran influences, she is more of a persuader, with an occasional
touch of steely spite, than an Amazon. She will certainly need
her Libran diplomacy to keep the peace between diverse media
interests such as Murdoch and the BBC.
The move away from education and employment matches her own
current urge for change as expansive Jupiter crosses Uranus, a
planet that always wants to do something different. Her
adaptability and attention to detail make her more than capable
of mastering the steep learning curve entailed in taking over a
new Ministry, but the big question is, what will be her guiding
rationale in this new enterprise? Virgo is strong on efficient
provision and practical necessities - typical was Jowell's
delivery of 'Surestart', an early-nurture programme for
disadvantaged mums and babies - but less secure on the wider
aspirations that constitute the intangible entity of 'culture'.
Her approach to the arts is likely to be based on their practical
and social usefulness, suiting New Labour's agenda. This doesn't
take risks and it doesn't further an art-for-its-own sake
philosophy. What's more, with the fire in her horoscope subdued,
we are unlikely to see flamboyant gestures designed to put
Britain on the cultural world stage. The one more elite note in
her horoscope is media Mercury with big-picture Neptune, so she
may do more for the film industry than it currently dares hope.
The stars show a testing time for Tessa Jowell next year,
especially in the spring when the Sun square to Saturn makes it
difficult for her to shine. Both her and her Department may be
sidelined then, and if so, Tony Blair should put her back where
she truly belongs, in Virgo's do-goody realms of employment and