It should be noted that when he seizes a state the new ruler ought to determine all the injuries that he will need to inflict. He should inflict them once and for all, and not have to renew them every day.
Niccolò Machiavelli (1469–1527), Italian political philosopher, statesman. The Prince, ch. 8 (written 1513-1514, published 1532), trans. by George Bull (1961).
"Whoever acts otherwise," Machiavelli added, "either through timidity or bad advice, is always forced to have the knife ready in his hand.... Violence should be inflicted once and for all; people will then forget what it tastes like and so be less resentful."