Hi, teachers,

What does the phrase of " a tethered goat" refer to ?

'that McGregor's ghostwriter, who has ghosted celebrity memoirs but never those of politicians, is being set up to be out of his depth - framed, in his own phrase, as "a tethered goat". '

thanks in advance
1 2
A tethered goat is tied to something (such as a fence or post) so that it stays in a very restricted area and is not able to roam freely.

Thus, the ghostwriter is apparently limited in his ability to write about politicians.
hi i'm an italian. i guess it refers to bait, lure. a tethered goat is sometimes used as a prey to catch nasty hunting animals. so the lawyer maybe has given the fake manuscript to mcgregor in order to find out if there were any men looking for it. francesco
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From BH
I think he was meaning that he could be used as a bait.

I am an American and that is the way I've heard the phrase used (Bait) and that is what I understand it to mean.
In the movie "Jurrasic Park", they fed one of the dinosaurs by putting a tethered goat where the dinosaur had access to it. I think the term means someone, the "Tethered Goat" will be sacrificed for a cause. By the way, the park owner's granddaughter says, wide eyed, "He's gonna eat the goat!?". Cute.
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"Your goat is tethered." Dialogue from LeCarre's "A Most Wanted Man" seems to carry the "bait" meaning.

'Tethered goat' would have a similar meaning to 'sacrificial lamb' or 'lamb led to the slaughter'. Think of the movie Jurassic Park--in one scene they show a goat chained to a stake and put into the T-Rex pen for its lunch. A gruesome mental picture, I know, but it's suggestive of the meaning of the phrase. I believe a tethered goat was also a technique used to draw wild game into open land so that they could be easily hunted. It's a cruel world out there.

A "tethered goat" is a reference to the practice of tying a goat to a stake as bait when hunting predatory game animals. The predator comes to eat the goat and is shot by the hunter. You can see this practice in the film The Ghost and the Darkness.

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