A medical scientist said on NPR that the SARS epidemic got out of hand in China because medical personnel trying to sound the alarm were told not to send disturbing reports to Beijing, to keep quiet about it. As a result, nothing was done until it got out-of-hand.
That is what happens in autocratic, demogogic, dictatorial societies. The great man must not be disturbed. He really doesn’t want to hear that the barbarians are at the door. He just wants somebody to handle it, otherwise heads will roll. The funny part is that it is eventually his head that rolls.