Behold the pathogenesis of our electoral fundamentalism. The drawing of lots, the most democratic of all political instruments, lost out in the eighteenth century to elections, a procedure that was not invented as a democratic instrument but as a means of bringing a new, non-hereditary aristocracy to power. The extension of suffrage made that aristocratic procedure thoroughly democratic without relinquishing the fundamental, oligarchic distinction between governors and governed, between politicians and voters. [...] There was something unavoidably vertical about it, always above and below, always a government and its subjects. Voting became the service lift that brought a few to the top, retaining therefore something of an elective feudalism, a form of internal colonialism that everyone endorsed.
1948: Universal Declaration of Human Rights mentions elections; later, Francis Fukuyama defines a democratic country as one that holds elections