The King summoned his Great Adviser and said to him, 'Listen, the people are saying that they can't feed themselves, they can't buy what they need.'
The Great Adviser said, 'Tell them that they're better off.'
'But they won't believe me,' said the King.
'Some will believe you, some will think that you mean things will be better next year, and some will just become sullen.'
'Sullen?' said the King, 'will that be alright?'
'Of course it will,' said the Great Adviser, 'Sullen means that they will just feel bad, say very little or blame the man next door.'
'Sounds good,' said the King.
'Off you go then,' said the Great Adviser, 'spread the good news.'
'I will,' said the King, 'but hang on a minute. What about the ones who will protest and say that we're lying?'
'With a bit of luck, there won't be enough of them to cause a problem,' said the Great Adviser, 'but if it starts to look difficult for us, I'll think of something else.'