C. S. Lewis didn’t write extensively on government, but when he did, he had insight into the basics. He uses the word “democracy” in the following quote, whereas I would prefer “representative government,” but his point is crystal clear and right on the mark:
I am a democrat because I believe in the Fall of Man. I think most people are democrats for the opposite reason. A great deal of democratic enthusiasm descends from the ideas of people like Rousseau, who believed in democracy because they thought mankind so wise and good that everyone deserved a share in the government. The danger of defending democracy on those grounds is that they’re not true. . . .
I find that they’re not true without looking further than myself. I don’t deserve a share in governing a hen-roost, much less a nation. . . . The real reason for democracy is . . . mankind is so fallen that no man can be trusted with unchecked power over his fellows. Aristotle said that some people were only fit to be slaves. I do not contradict him. But I reject slavery because I see no men fit to be masters.
Looking at that cartoon, I concluded that another comment by Lewis in the same essay was also appropriate for today:
Democracy demands that little men should not take big ones too seriously; it dies when it is full of little men who think they are big themselves.
How very true.