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I have always wondered why Azog likes to refer to dwarves as scum, but after The Desolation of Smaug I can sort of understand why. The leader of the company, seems to me a reckless, deceitful, angry dwarf of little intelligence, full of ambition and limited means.

First, Thorin couldn't open the door to Erebor and almost gave up and left Bilbo to open the secret entrance. This shows that he is not an intelligent person, having risked the lives of his men just to fail in the end.

Second, Thorin deceived the master of Lake-town with the promise of riches, and in an act of goodwill, the Master allowed Thorin's men a way through. If Thorin fails to kill the dragon, the lake people will suffer the consequences.

What is baffling is that the company of dwarves keeps taking orders from Thorin, having put the lake people at the mercy of an angry dragon. Why do the company of the dwarves keep on believing in the leadership of Thorin?

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    Why would they if they were all liked-minded or share the same goals/ambitions? Your question almost sounds like a rant. – Kreann Oct 13 '14 at 14:37
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    are you basing this entirely off of the movie? because the dwarves were not that bad in the actual book, and thorin has been their leader for 50+ years and has made them all relatively wealthy, despite the fact that they lost their homes,massive wealth to the dragon. – Himarm Oct 13 '14 at 14:47
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    Also extremely importen, the amount of wealth that will be gained if they succeed is most likely litterally more wealth then anyone else on middle earth has, and split just among them makes them the richest people in the "world" essentially , and the first and foremost in every dwarfs mind in gold, gems, money, riches. its what they live for greed, the 7 rings given to the dwarves did nothing, because they are already flawed towards greed so much, (and they are a "sturdy people anyway" – Himarm Oct 13 '14 at 14:51
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    towards your comment on the lake town, in the book the ruler of lake town was a scumbag anyway, he figured that the dwarves would just get themselves killed so he loaded them up with supplies and sent them away, and as a side thought if they managed to kill the dragon he personally would be rewarded by the dwarves, so it was a win win for him, he never even thought about the dragon attacking the town, and he could have easily stopped them if he had. – Himarm Oct 13 '14 at 15:16
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    I find it kind of hilarious that this question was asked by "Gandalf" :) – Travis Christian Oct 13 '14 at 19:41
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Thorin isn't just any old random Dwarf, he's an important Dwarf. In the words of the book:

...an enormously important dwarf, in fact no other than the great Thorin Oakenshield himself...

First of all, he's heir to the Kingship Under the Mountain, which means he is by right (as movie-Thorin would say: "the only right!") the ruler of the other Dwarves in this story.

Secondly, and I can't recall if this is mentioned in the movie, but he is also Durin's heir. Durin was the eldest of the Seven Fathers of the Dwarves, and being Durin's heir means that Thorin has some degree of supremacy over all Dwarves in Middle-earth.

So even if movie-Thorin does come across as a little pompous and dumb at times, he is still their rightful king.

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    "... Thorin has some degree of supremacy over all Dwarves in Middle-earth." This is how his father Thrain was able to induce pretty much all the tribes of Dwarves to fight against the Goblins/Orcs after Thror was killed. – Matt Gutting Oct 13 '14 at 18:52
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    @MattGutting - "... they were joined by great forces sent from the Houses of other Fathers; for this dishonour to the heir of the Eldest of their race filled them with wrath..." – user8719 Oct 13 '14 at 19:53
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As is said by User 8719, Thorin is the heir to the Kingdom under the mountains, and the heir of Durin.

But what he may have forgotten to explain is that the Kingdom Under the Mountain was a geographical or territorial kingdom which had specific geographical borders. Thorin is the heir to the kingdom, but not the king of it, until he may succeed in taking control and settling that territory with his people.

But being heir to Durin is different. As soon as Thorin's father Thrain was declared legally dead, Thorin became the King of Durin's People, the Longbeards. That kingship was totally separate from, and thousands of years older than, the Kingdom Under the Mountain, even though they belonged to the same persons for several generations. The Kingdom of the Longbeards was an ethnic or tribal kingdom, not a territorial kingdom. All Longbeards were always under the authority of the King of the Longbeards wherever they were, in whatever territorial kingdom or realm they happened to be at the time.

Being the heir of Durin was not being the heir to a kingdom, it was being already the king of the kingdom of Durin's people. So to the Dwarves of Durin's line, the Longbeards, Thorin was not only the anticipated future King Under the Mountain, with all the fantastic wealth of recovered gold that would give him, he was also their present monarch, the King of the Longbeards, as well as being the (politically and socially) senior and most prestigious of all the dwarf kings.

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One must remember the dwarves are driven by greed and the acquisition of jewels and riches. Greed was always their undoing. It was their undoing in Beleriand when the dwarves of Belegost I believe sacked the city of Menegroth and slew Elwe over the Necklace of the Dwarves. Admittedly Elwe became enamoured of the Nauglamir after the Silmaril was set within it. But my point is that the Dwarves were so driven by their lust for jewels and riches that they actually started a massive fight and actually killed one of the great Elven Kings. That makes them as bad as Melko! They risked the ire of the entire elven race and were annihilated to the last dwarf by none other than Beren Erchamion. I doubt Thorin had lost any sleep over decieving Girion as he tried to re take Erebor and reclaim his hordes of treasure.

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