Friday, September 23, 2011

Pictures of goats in trees

Yahoo and the goats in the trees

update below
According to Yahoo:

In Morocco, the native Tamri goats are so enticed by the berries of Argan trees that they have become adept at climbing the branches to reach their food. Even stranger still, the goats' droppings contain seed kernels which local farmers then grind into an oil that is used in cooking and cosmetics.

I'm skeptical. Maybe the Morocco Export Council is thinking, "Oh, those stupid Americans. Surely if we post some pictures of native Tamri goats in trees, we will be able to sell more berries. They will never for a moment suspect we know how to use the photoshop because they think we don't understand these things. Ha ha ha ha!" Or maybe somebody else is thinking this.

Note also the reference to Abbas' speech at the UN. The speech urging the UN to recognize Palestine as a state is harmful or not harmful to the peace process. Leaving aside the questions of what exactly the peace process is, i.e. whether it can only occur under US-sanctioned auspices or at least with US approval of the process, the blurb on Yahoo's front page functions as a barrier, positing "helpful or harmful" to the peace process, as opposed to many other possible questions:

Why the P.A. taking is the initiative, why they would want to, or feel they have to, or of the US losing its primacy in the Middle East, and if so, why do others see the US's influence as less useful or relevant than before, or simply whether or not its the best course of action for the Palestinians to take, to further their interests. No, its important for Americans to regard other people as children, and therefore, ironically, important for the press to treat Americans as children to help perpetuate this.

Do people actually buy this, and look at things, and avoid looking at other things, the way this approach dictates? Undoubtedly some do. I suppose the stereotype of Palestinians dancing in the streets probably helps, reinforcing the image of those hot-headed, passionate desert peoples, etc.

Reuters,"Abbas stakes Palestinian claim to state at U.N."(the Yahoo news link above)

"Obama sold Israel bunker-buster bombs"(also here)

"Israel on alert for possible Hamas attack"

Lt. Col. Avital Leibovich, an army spokeswoman, says there is "concrete intelligence" that Hamas and maybe other militant groups are trying to infiltrate the border.

She says an attack might be timed to torpedo the Palestinian statehood bid at the U.N., an effort being led by Hamas' chief rival, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

Israel has more to benefit from an attack by Hamas at this point than Hamas does, in terms of the propaganda value of being able to point to it as yet another proof of the brutishness of the Palestinians, and Hamas has a lot to lose if they attack Israel, especially now, in terms of credibility and goodwill. That doesn't automatically make the assertion of "concrete intelligence" so much hogwash, but it still reminds me of the goats in the trees.

Cross-posted here at Hugo Zoom.

update: Rob Payne kindly references this goaty discussion, here. Also, he mentions this by Philip Giraldi:"Biggest Losers in Palestine Veto? The American People" as well as a recent Counterpunch piece by Uri Avnery. All three are worthwhile.

I wonder if US and Israeli politicians are feeling boxed in now, as if they have no choice but to be even more recalcitrant. Maybe they feel this in part because of how the political zeitgeist has shifted so far to the right in both countries, which of course is something they had a hand in creating. Or maybe they blame it on the Palestinians, for not co-operating in the the continual confirming and reconfirming of their own agreeable powerlessness, and committing the crime of embarrassing the two countries.

But they're not boxed in. All they have to do is acknowledge Palestine's claim as legitimate, as opposed to continuing the fictional peace process that fools fewer people each day. If they actually did this it could even lead to a nonfictional peace process. Could you imagine that?

Labels: , , ,


At September 24, 2011 4:46 AM, Blogger Jack Crow said...

My sister in law gave me a calendar for the holidays, last year: Goats in Trees. It's a thing.

At September 24, 2011 11:40 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

One of your best posts yet, Jonathan. Did Abbas harm the peace process? They must mean the process by which Israel and the U.S. have been staging their fake peace process. The peace process consists mainly of making demands of the Palestinians that they know nobody would ever accept.

And I do recall Obama’s calling for more transparency for government like selling those bunker busters in secret. Promises, promises.

At September 24, 2011 1:10 PM, Blogger Jonathan Versen said...

Hi Jack C., I didn't know this, but it had a certain artful pomo quality about it.

Hi Rob,

And oh yeah, the goats said "baaaaah!"

At September 26, 2011 12:02 AM, Blogger Unknown said...


I almost fell out of my chair when I read what Tom Friedman recently said.

This has also left the U.S. government fed up with Israel’s leadership but a hostage to its ineptitude, because the powerful pro-Israel lobby in an election season can force the administration to defend Israel at the U.N., even when it knows Israel is pursuing policies not in its own interest or America’s.

Is this the Tom Friedman I thought I knew? Amazing. I agree with him, the embarrassing fawning of Congress and Obama before the Israeli is due to elections, elections, and of course, elections. It seems clear that Obama and the dems are feeling pretty desperate with the loss to a Tea Party candidate in a heavily Jewish district. That is the maddening part which is I’m sure Obama feels he needs to support Netanyahu in order to be re-elected yet the real reason Jews voted for Obama was by far more related to social issues here in the States. What a world, Obama may be smart but he is also misreading the motivations of his supporters.

At September 26, 2011 1:06 AM, Blogger Jonathan Versen said...

I haven't scoured the internet to find relevant data about turnout and level of campaign financing for the NY ex-Weiner race, but it strikes me as pretty reasonable to assume that the Dems deliberately took a dive to scare wealthy dem and dem-leaning contributors to open their wallets for the more important election next year.

So what if a republican holds Weiner's seat for what, 14 or 15 months? Maybe I'm wrong, and they fought like hell. Who knows.

As far as Friedman goes, I trust him as much as Sharon trusted Yassir Arafat. Maybe his views have really changed since he told Charlie Rose the Arabs can "suck on this", and maybe he's just trying to do damage control.

At September 26, 2011 5:17 AM, Blogger micah holmquist said...

The tree climbing goats do look quite strange, but...

If this is a hoax, it is a hoax that has been going around the world wide web for a few years.

At September 26, 2011 5:23 AM, Blogger micah holmquist said...

BTW, on a somewhat related subject, and not that anyone asked my opinion about this but right now I am feeling the urge to share one of my many opinions...

I'm fascinated by cryptozoology as a form of a folklore So many of the stories that people tell of seeing say Chupacabra or Dogman are mostly about the new car they had at the time or their late beloved dog. Then at the end, they add on something about seeing a strange creature. I suspect that at least some of them are in on the joke and just like telling stories.

At September 26, 2011 12:16 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Jonathan, I'm no fan of Friedman but it is interesting that he grasps this fact, I think it shows what a liar he is 99.9 percent of the time. I don't know either, regarding dem motives though perhaps you may be giving them too much credit in the brain deprartment. Maybe not, who knows, not me. Peace.

At September 26, 2011 12:22 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Just to settle the goat issue, goats really climb trees. You have to see this video...


At September 26, 2011 5:54 PM, Blogger micah holmquist said...


Thanks for the link. I have a feeling my world will never be the same.

At September 26, 2011 6:05 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Hi Micah,

Yes, knowledge can be a terrible thing. The goat issue has ruined my life entirely.


Post a Comment

<< Home