This short essay talks about why:
Some people seem to challenge the idea that most (if not all) free software projects need a benevolent dictatorâ€”that is, somebody who has the last say on every decision. They are quick to point out Linus Torvaldsâ€™ past â€śmistakesâ€ť (see the brackets): using BitKeeper to manage the kernel, not allowing â€śpluggableâ€ť schedulers in Linux, etc. As a software developer, I feel that a dictator is absolutely necessary in every free software project. Here is why.
ps. While i agree with most of the points I don't don't agree it has to be one person for life -- i see no reason not to rotate people in charge. And i think when a project has only a few core developers, a normal informal equal-responsibility situation is fine. I think this need to have one designated person in charge really becomes useful mostly when the group starts getting bigger. My experience is that some things will just never get done unless you have a designated person to crack the whip and make sure everything that needs to get done does in fact get done.