recall has to be one of the biggest consumer panics to date. Deadly factory
flaws and design errors on the AIX and Wilderness tires have necessitated
a recall of over 6.5 million defective tires—most of which were installed
on Ford vehicles—and there may be more recalls coming. Lawsuits are mounting
due to the body count rising in the automobile deaths that have cost over
a hundred people their lives in the United States and abroad. Alarmed
by the news, Americans by the hundreds-of-thousands have put themselves
on waiting lists for tire replacements.
When we examine Firestone’s “birth” chart, constructed for the moment
the company came into being, we see that transiting Pluto, ruler of death
and transformation, is currently making a tense square aspect to the
natal Sun, which symbolizes Firestone’s image. Pluto is a planet of power and
metamorphosis, and its contact with the company’s Sun indicates that the
deaths caused by the faulty tires will bring about deep changes in the
company’s policies and reputation.
and Ford are now facing Congress, with each company stepping up the criticism
of the other. Saturn, planet of accountability, is transiting over Firestone’s
Lunar North Node (destiny) in Gemini, the sign of communications, automobiles
and transportation. Memos, documents and discussions, also linked to Gemini,
are showing that there may have been negligence on both sides. Ford disputed
the idea that the design of the Explorer was in some way responsible for
the accidents, and blamed Firestone for refusing to take steps for a recall
on the inferior product they were aware they were manufacturing.
to say, this has strained the relationship between Firestone and Ford.
Ford is already contracting with Goodyear and the French tire manufacturer,
Michelin, which has a highly trusted image. We’ve all seen those Michelin
commercials with the baby in the tire, telling us that our children are
safe when traveling in cars equipped with their product.
to the current Pluto transit, the Firestone chart has many challenging
planetary contacts that make this year very significant and difficult.
The recent May 2000 Jupiter-Saturn
conjunction hit the company’s natal Mars in Taurus, suggesting
a new business cycle (Jupiter conjunct Mars) with a focus on professionalism
(Saturn)—one that brings more responsibility and accountability (also
Saturn). It also indicated that the accidents (Mars) with the faulty tires
was the issue that would bring this accountability to the surface.
of transiting Uranus conjunct the company’s natal Mercury, combined with
the energy of transiting Pluto square its natal Sun, indicates a disruption
(Uranus) with the automobile industry (Mercury) and public opinion. A
name change or re-inventing (Pluto) the company (Sun) is a possibility.
These aspects suggest that the image (Sun) and credibility Firestone has
built is dying (Pluto). This is happening not only internally, with the
employees of the company, (as shown by the Decatur, Illinois plant and
inferior standards issues and employee strikes), but also with the public.
It will be extremely difficult to regain consumer confidence in the Firestone
experienced similar issues in 1978, when the National Highway Traffic
Safety Administration (NHTSA) investigated a massive recall just when
transiting, illusive Neptune in Sagittarius squared Firestone’s Sun! Current
trends suggest additional lawsuits may fire up, even globally (Sagittarius),
as this investigation unfolds.
factor is Firestone's natal t-square pattern, where conservative Saturn
in Aries squares idealistic Neptune in Cancer and disruptive Uranus in
Capricorn. This suggests a company and executives (Saturn) making inappropriate
decisions (Uranus, Neptune) balancing profits and lives. It also indicates
that the company got caught up in the mundane matters of profitability
(Saturn in Aries) and ignored human safety (Neptune in Cancer). In 1997
and 1998, Saturn, transiting through Aries, activated the t-square by
conjuncting Firestone’s natal Saturn. At this time, the reports of tire
failure that led up to the issues presented began to surface in Saudi
Saturn will move back into financial Taurus and conjunct the action planet
Mars one last time in January 2001, bringing the reality of the situation
home. After repeated blows—a massive tire recall, congressional hearings,
talk of criminal charges and consumer backlash—the Firestone brand is
badly injured, and may not recover anytime soon, if ever. Resignations
may pile up as the bailout begins. Employee strikes and the potential
of closing down the company for awhile may prove even more costly, probably
totaling billions of dollars in damages, which is difficult for any company
to recover. Saturn will finish its North Node conjunction in May 2001,
suggesting that the investigations and trial could continue through spring
2001. Corporate heads may roll! It appears that Firestone may have to
close its doors, or transform the company into a new image that the public
can trust, and it may well be under a different name. Would you buy a
Firestone product again?