A famous communist leader, having been aided by western powers to amass a sizable portion of a continent, gave his underlings a valuable lesson in power and control. He asked them to convene at his palace. His lecture was going to be taught just once – his time was too valuable to waste. The apparatchiks were directed to bring a goose to the seminar.
Each acquired a bird, built a sizable cage to house it, and proceeded to feed it well. On a given day, all gathered in the grand ballroom of the palace, carrying various cages.
Arriving fifteen minutes late for good measure, the leader entered the grand ballroom followed by a very thin goose. With each step he took, the goose reached in his pocket, begging for grain. Magnanimously, and with studied aplomb, he fed it one single grain from time to time.
The underlings stood up and congratulated each other for being there, applauding the presence of the great one. The dear leader asked them to open the cages and to release the geese. As soon as the geese sensed that the cage had been unbolted and they were free to go, the birds took off, ignoring their masters.
The only bird left was the dear leader’s starving goose. Ever so attentive, she looked up to him with a sad face, waiting for her master to dispense one single grain of food.
“Do you see what happened if you fed them too much? They forgot who you were and no longer recognized you as their master. My faithful goose, fed just a few grains a day, enough to keep her from starving to death, is the most loyal bird.”
The abject lesson of near starvation and meager dependency was the dear leader’s recipe to lead a nation of blind followers.