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Damn I love throwing my people a bone

The great thing about keeping your people in a permanent state of repression is that when you offer them just the tiniest little thing, they are so much more appreciative.

Sure I could lighten up on the police state, stop rifling through the political opposition's apartments, maybe let some of those journalists out of prison. For that matter, I could give other private entrepreneurs a break instead of insisting any profitable business be linked either to me or one of my knuckle-headed sons. And I could stop taxing the bejeezeus out of those farmers, the ones who never seem to have any shoes, or teeth in their mouths.
But what's the point of that? They'd smell softness, and the vultures would start to circle, the opposition would start to strategize, and this whole ball of wax would start to come undone. And I don't want that.
So instead, I like to throw the long-suffering people a bone once in a while, just to remind them who's capable of doing just that. Sometimes we'll have an extra-lovely birthday celebration for me, for example. Everyone seems to love that. Or, like my buddy Jammeh over in the Gambia, I'll proclaim a shorter work-week. That's good stuff for the several hundred people with real jobs. The rest of those folks aren't working anyway, so they don't reap the benefit, but you can tell they're grateful by the extra sparkle in their eyes as they hang those little puppets in efigy. Who's yo daddy? That's right, y'all!
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