"All over the world there were rulers with titles like the Exalted, the
Supreme, and Lord High Something or Other. Only in one small country was the ruler elected by the people, who could remove him whenever they wanted--and they called him the Tyrant.
"The Ephebians believed that every man should have the vote*. [*provided
that he wasn't poor, foreign, nor disqualified by reason of being mad, frivolous, or a woman] Every five years someone was elected to be Tyrant, provided he could prove that he was honest, intelligent, sensible, and trustworthy. Immediately after he was elected, of course, it was obvious to everyone that he was a criminal madman and totally out of touch with the view of the ordinary philosopher on the street looking for a towel. And then five years later they elected another one just like him, and really it was amazing how intelligent people kept on making the same mistakes."
--from "Small Gods" by Terry Pratchett