When making an example, always choose an innocent man: this cows innocent and guilty alike.
In ’37 Stalin made a hash
Of party loyalists and army brass.
Decimation: One in ten are shot.
What’s the word when one in ten are not?
None rule by force alone.
Punishment deters less the few who suffer it than the many who fear that they might.
Institutions are never repaired, only replaced.
Every great racket begins as a business, becomes a movement, and eventually degenerates into a cause.
The ideal subject population must be able to absorb the regime’s propaganda as well as willing to believe it — credulous, but literate.
There is a limit to the number of people who can be sanely ruled under a single polity, a Dunbar’s Number for governance. It is probably greater than 150 and certainly less than 300 million.
I would vote if it cost enough.
Punishment must be harsh when it is neither swift nor sure.
A philosopher once noted that jaywalking could be prevented by executing offenders. This may not be a point in favor of executions for jaywalking; but it is certainly a point in favor of executions.