‘And who, precisely, defines the monstrousness of the monsters and the tyranny of the tyrants?’ said Lord Vetinari, his voice suddenly like a scalpel–not vicious like a sword, but probing its edge into vulnerable places.

Mr Betteridge shifted uneasily.  ‘Well…the hero, I suppose.’

‘Ah.  And the theft of these rare items…I think the word that interests me here is the term “theft”, an activity frowned on by most of the world’s major religions, is it not?  The feeling stealing over me is that ALL these terms are defined by the hero.  You could say: I am a hero, so when I kill you that makes you, de facto, the kind of person suitable to be killed by a hero.  You could say that a hero, in short, is someone who indulges every whim that, within the rule of law, would have him behind bars or swiftly dancing what I believe is known as the help fandango  The words WE might use are: murder, pillage, theft and rape.  Have I understood the situation?’

Terry Pratchett, “The Last Hero”


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