Similar to too many cooks, but with the added complication of a shortage of execution units.

Usually uttered when things are pretty well screwed, and one of the too many chiefs just wishes there were people that would just follow orders instead of giving their own suggestions.

I heard one smart alec radio reporter use this phrase to describe the political instability that was afflicting Fiji in 2000.

In slightly more detail; there are a significant number of ethnic Indians living in Fiji, mostly tracing their heritage back to "coolie" labourers brought in by the English. For an ethnic minority, the Fijian Indians have quite a bit of political and financial influence (not unlike the ethnic Chinese in Indonesia) and they are well represented in government. However, the military almost entirely consists of ethnic Fijians; which is what lead to George Speight's coup in 2000.

The intention of the reporter was to suggest that if the ethnic Indians weren't a minority, and the Fijian Chieftains were a little more tolerant, the coup might have been avoided.

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