Many Americans are nervous that Donald Trump is consistently violating long-held democratic norms, and that we’re beginning to look more like a banana republic than the “Birthplace of Democracy.” Others would say you simply don’t know the pleasures of actually living in a banana republic.

Here are five helpful tips to navigate the ins and outs of your new, failed state.

1. Befriend a general.

Hey, just because democracy has collapsed doesn’t mean you have to give up on your dreams of turning your neighbor’s yard into a prosperous grove of banana trees for export. With the support and friendship of your local general, local laws and land records can be completely rewritten in your favor. Remember, banana leaves make for great cigars, and your neighbor’s children’s tiny hands make for great rolling!

2. If no one has declared themselves governor of your province, it’s you.

Nature abhors a vacuum, and it’s human nature to sit around and wait for someone else to take charge. But the new agrarian economy isn’t going to grow itself! The good people at the United Fruit Company aren’t just gonna twiddle their thumbs and give their bribes to just anyone. Grab your destiny by your mercenary army and take what’s yours!

3. Bananas grown to feed your day laborers make for an excellent export.

In the old days, the capital imperialists had to learn this lesson the hard way by dealing with the annoying fact their day laborers required food. Now, your strategic foresight is as strong as your banana reserves. Because your day laborers eat so little food, whatever is leftover is pure profit!

4. Whenever in doubt, fall back on the Monroe Doctrine.

Have you ever experienced the pure joy of someone telling you that you were wrong and then throwing the Monroe Doctrine right back in their face? Well, last time I checked, this is still North America! Which brings me to my final tip…

5. The CIA will trade you guns for drugs.

Such a cliché situation: the neighboring warlord keeps torching your plantain groves, which is eroding the morale of your villagers. You need more guns to restore the balance of power in your province. Luckily, the CIA, in a bid to gain influence in the region, will trade you guns for your cocaine. What will they do with all those drugs, you ask? That’s the Port Authority’s problem!

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