Scott Adams sees this as a general comment on the human condition, I see it as a more apt metaphor for the US system of governance:
If aliens landed in your backyard and gave you one minute to describe everything there is to know about human behavior, what would you say?
I found an answer to that question today as I was looking through my old e-mails. This story was sent to me by a Dilbert reader.
— start —
The maintenance man is moving the thermostat in our office today. I started talking with him about the “Thermostat Wars” [from Dilbert comics]. He told me about one office with 30 women where they could never get the temperature to an agreeable level. At his suggestion they installed 20 dummy thermostats around the office. Everyone was told that each thermostat controlled the zone around itself.
Problem solved. Now that everyone has “control” of their own thermostat there is no problem.
Most times, the illusion of control is enough to satisfy people.