a fresh definition of multi-party democracy

I just finished Wizard of the Crow, a 765 page satire by Ngugi wa Thiongo.  The Ruler of the fictional Aburiria introduces his political philosophy of multiparty democracy:

There are no moral limits to the means that a ruler can use, from lies to lives, bribes to blows, in order to ensure that his state is stable and his power secure.  But if he could keep the state stable through sacrificing truth rather than lives, bending rather than breaking the law, sealing the lips of the oustpoken with endless trickeries rather than tearing them with barbed-wire and hot wax, if he could buy peace through a grand deception rather than a vast display of armored behicles in the streets, which often gave his enemies material for propaganda, it would be the sweetest of victories. (p703)

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