March 04, 2004


The Arab News reports an economic downturn in Jeddah:

The Anti-Begging Department has been forced to terminate the contracts of 16 employees, Al-Bilad Arabic newspaper reported. A number of the men told the paper this made it impossible for them to provide for their families and could force them to turn to begging.

At least they know the drill. Maybe they should follow the entrepreneurial lead of Muhammad Salman:

Nineteen-year-old Muhammad Salman has established the Kingdom’s first sheep laundry near Jeddah’s central sheep market after all attempts to find a job failed.

“I believe this is an honorable job. There is nothing to be ashamed of,” he told Al-Madinah Arabic daily.

Read the rest of the article. Muhammad is, er, cleaning up.

(Via contributor J. F. Beck)

Posted by Tim Blair at March 4, 2004 12:15 AM

I wonder how much for a beaver wash and wax? (Sorry, I couldn't resist the setup.)

Posted by: S Whiplash at March 4, 2004 at 12:37 AM

He seems to be missing out on a major market. Camels. That's where the money is.

Posted by: Ernie G at March 4, 2004 at 01:09 AM

And he's employing people!

Wealth, created out of thin air. The simple and constant refutation of one of the basic premises of Marxism. Think it'll be noticed? Think he'll be derided as an opressor if his business really takes off?

Posted by: jack at March 4, 2004 at 01:30 AM

The idea that manual work is honorable is one that is sorely lacking in much of the Arab culture - pleased to see this young man embrace it.

Posted by: rkb at March 4, 2004 at 01:52 AM

getting them ready for their dates on saturday night...

Posted by: Mr. Bingley at March 4, 2004 at 02:07 AM

Hey, i applaud Muhammad. Sure, he's not a oil tycoon, but at least he has an honest job. Good for him.

Posted by: madne0 at March 4, 2004 at 03:10 AM

Aren't those called Beauty Salons here in the western world?

Posted by: Crusader at March 4, 2004 at 03:38 AM

Good for him. SA could use more of his ilk.
Not sheep cleaners, but people not averse to manual labor.

Posted by: Half Canadian at March 4, 2004 at 06:34 AM

This sounds like a Ewe-ish conspiracy.

Thank you and tip your waitress.


Posted by: BC at March 4, 2004 at 07:14 AM

And they say the Muslim world never innovates. I visited a farm here in Australia once and was shocked at the filthy state of the animals.

Posted by: Amos at March 4, 2004 at 07:57 AM

Muhammed's got a chance to crack the export market. Get 'em all clean and purtied up and backload them on a live sheep ship to New Zealand.

Posted by: slatts at March 4, 2004 at 10:14 AM

Tim, if you were driving down the old road to melbourne you would pass many a Sheepwash Creek. Part of our early history. I always assumed that they used to run them through a creek prior to shearing in order to get cleaner and more vaulable wool.
perhaps things are looking up in Saudi, you would recall PJ O'Rourke's line from the first Gulf War, that there was a botle of post-war Scotch for the first person catching a Saudi lifting anything heavier than a credit card.

Posted by: jack at March 4, 2004 at 10:25 AM

"Anti-Begging Department". We could use one of those here: no more Sally Struthers!

Posted by: Dave Paglia at March 4, 2004 at 05:25 PM

I see a franchise opportunity in New Zealand.

Posted by: Razor at March 5, 2004 at 10:22 AM