In the Mphakhwe Chiefdom, the Chief’s dog is chief dog; and tradition is that when a Chief’s dog is cast adrift by the Chief; it’s no longer chief dog. It’s a dog that once belonged to the Chief, once had the status of a chief dog; but now banished from the Chiefdom by the Chief. The Mphakhwe Chief is reputedly helpful and generous to his dogs as he is customarily merciless to banished dogs. Banished dogs can growl for the Chief’s merciful attention as they want; but the Chief has a notorious, albeit, admirable reputation for not reversing his decisions.
This is largely because, so informs the tales of what happens inside the Mphakhwe Chiefdom, before the Mphakhwe Chief decides to banish his dogs from the Chiefdom; the dogs are repeatedly warned – sometimes mercilessly whipped – to keep steady in line and ungrudgingly loyal to the Chief, the Chiefdom and its demands and tradition. The dogs in the Chiefdom must be loyal to the extent that, if the Chief so decides, for his own personal entertainment (pleasure), to drive a pike up any dog’s bottom; that the dog must take it up with unshaken calm and without complaint.
However, the world is organised in a strange way such that nothing in it, and certainly in life, is ever that certain as to be so accurately predictable. The Mphakhwe Chiefdom is conscious of that; and as such, the Chief makes exceptional allowances to the Chiefdom’s tradition on decisions. It’s the Chief’s exclusive prerogative; but at a cost on the Chief’s chiefly reputation and – by extension – the Chiefdom’s pride and carefully crafted and cultivated reputation.
The Mphakhwe Chief is also aware of the danger posed by stray dogs. The Chief, in his chiefly wisdom and experience, is well aware and knows that banished dogs from the Chiefdom can easily become dangerous stray dogs. Banished dogs from the Chiefdom, if and once turned stray dogs, pose great danger to the Chiefdom. The Mphakhwe Chief, in his chiefly wisdom and experience, knows and fully understands the energy and resources needed and expended to fight stray dogs.
Applying Cost-Benefit Analysis, the Mphakhwe Chief, concludes that;
(1) the cost of reneging on his decision is far less than the cost – energy and resources – expended to fight dogs banished from the Chiefdom and turned stray dogs;
(2) the benefits are greater than sticking to his decision.
Consequently, it’s not uncommon – and therefore not surprising – when the Mphakhwe Chief reverses his chiefly decisions and allows once banished dogs from the Chiefdom, back to the Chiefdom but certainly and strictly not back as chief dogs. They’re simply dogs in the Chiefdom although without the official Chiefdom title of ‘chief dog‘. Chief dog is a special designation, once lost; it’s never gained because it’s the (the expression of the) Mphakhwe Chief’s confidence in the chief dog. But once that confidence is lost, irrespective of why and/or how, the chief dog automatically loses the Chiefdom title and all the entitlement of ‘chief dog‘. The Mphakhwe Chief takes ‘chief‘ away from the dog; and the dog is simply the Chiefdom’s dog.
The Mphakhwe Chief uses his confidence in chief dogs as a currency; the value of which, is predicated on – and derives from – the fact that it is and must be granted only once. When the Mphakhwe Chief loses confidence in a chief dog; it may result in the chief dog being banished from the Chiefdom; mainly to safeguard the value of his currency, that is, confidence in chief dogs.
But if the Mphakhwe Chief reneges on his decision and allows a once banished dog from the Chiefdom, back to the Chiefdom; it’s not that the Chief has regained lost confidence in that dog. It’s that the Mphakhwe Chief, in his chiefly wisdom and experience, has – applying Cost-Benefit Analysis; and considering that the cost of reneging on his decision is far less than the cost, that is, energy and resources expended on fighting dogs banished from the Chiefdom and turned (into) stray dogs – concluded that; (1) it’s better to have and keep that (previously banished) dog in the Chiefdom than risk to have it turn into a stray dog; and (2) the dog will be running the Chief’s ad hoc errands in the Chiefdom, sometimes outside the Chiefdom.