One often hears the call for a purer democracy, as if more of the disease would abate the symptoms; and of those symptoms one is meant not to be ashamed, but rather to be boastful, as though they were the bravely-taken pains of progress.
[I]t’s still dispiriting that the face we show the world, via America, is so often the one of aristocracy and deference, with barely a nod to the diverse, churning society we actually live in. 
Perhaps some still have the decency to be embarrassed by the reality of the “diverse, churning society” in which we live.
The reactionaries of the 19th century . . . feared the accrued wisdom of the ages would be lost if the vulgar mob were allowed a vote, believing that Britain was best governed by a class of experts. Theirs is not some dispute about procedure or constitutional mechanics. It is an argument against democracy itself. 
Looking in vain for a trace of the wisdom of the ages in the present government is forsooth a damned good argument against democracy. It is not true, however, that our democracy is the rule of the mob; such is direct democracy. Ours is a representative democracy, that is to say, the rule of the representatives of that mob.
 Jonathan Freedland, “We lecture the world on democracy, but still don't elect our upper house”, The Guardian, 28th February 2007.