It might be a ruse after all- Dilbert reaction did'nt change. So for all that we know the worst options might infact be the best option incognito. After all the frame does start with " We can manipulate ... "
I once commented one of my boss's decisions to another programmer (my boss at that time was an engineer):
Me: Engineers should stick to fixing bicyles.
Boss: (Behind me) Oh really?
Me: Sorry, I meant tricycles.