Democracy is a way of enslaving leadership in service to "the people", although this is largely theoretical since democracy has only ever truly existed where it wasn't needed, certainly where there existed no need for a concept of democracy -- if the people place themselves first they simply act, and secure by constant effort that society which is really theirs, however most people prefer not to put on such an effort and would instead like to participate in pre-established society, trusting its maintenance and administration to others. So it is that after the fervor of war wears down actions tend to recede in scope, the power and drama inherent to a truly living society, one continuously reproducing its own structure in the conditions of the people, fall away into the sphere more or less of one's own individual life. Self-interest, ambition, and leisure are all conditions of individual living within an established society necessarily free from the burdens of democracy in the real sense of the term, and so in order to protect the derivative states by which consciousness lays upon itself the many deceptive images of an ambivalent psychology we have arisen social ideals called democracy, progress, humanitarianism, freedom, capitalism, and so on. These "ideas" are more like functional non-thinking formula for the reproduction of the many social systems needed to maintain more effortless living, more distances between man and the world. (It is possible that all this corresponds to what Parodites notes as the historical progression toward transcendental reason, the shift from internalizing nature within the self to projecting or reifying ourselves into nature.)
In this way democracy does not really exist, and where it does exist it cannot well be called democracy; and where it is called democracy there something else has taken over, namely the ways of the people to live upon the efforts of others while deifying their own individual participation in the external, impersonal systems as if that participation itself were synonymous with those systems or with the justification for those systems' continued existence. Men have never needed democracy- they've simply needed to live either by their own hand, or by the hand of another.
What is revered as democracy is only a social setup whereupon most people can subsist with the least necessary initiative or real effort, the price for this subjective lassitude being all forms of wage-slave labor and indentured servitude; while the leaders are impressed into service of the ideals of the multitude, the price for this service being that the people happily tolerate all sort of indecencies, corruptions and lies from their leaders so long as those leaders continue to espouse the ideals of the system which continues to afford effortless living (effortless of course in the real sense of what it would mean to undertake an effort, such as with philosophy or real action), and continue to keep that system in operation by any means necessary. In turn for their deception the leaders reap wealth and the narrow exigencies of power, as the application-sites of administrative or technical networks. So we can see that pride and vanity are the primary motivators in the modern world, to the extent that the modern world is "democratic": pride in one's self-feeling as either an individual or a broker of vaster power-relations, and vanity in the assumption that all of society, even all of existence itself ought to serve one's own life in the first place, or if not in the first then certainly at least in the second or third place. It must be concluded that a very small conception of life and existence is the only possible cause of such a society and people. After all we are talking about society whose people must (it isn't even an option anymore, but an absolute mandate) fill their time with "consumption" in order to avoid consuming the one truth on whose absence so many of the other aspects of their living depends. Marx merely tried to critique half of the situation while maintaining unwavering alliance to its other half, thus he more or less balanced the scales of the equation as we can see today in the effects of his influence in our contemporary world-- none of the old delusions have been overcome, and a few more have even been quietly added into the fray. Marx can be revered or hated in equal measure by any point along the political spectrum, it merely depends upon the degree and pitch of one's own particular insanity, one's own "perspective".
Note that this is an objective, naturalistic analysis of the situation and doesn't really veer into questions of what kind of society we should want, or any sort of morality. I don't believe in morality that isn't grounded in reality, so I take time to understand the more objective situation first. It may turn out in the end that the present system we have is "the best", or at least the best possible, or the best yet; but I don't think it even makes sense to ask that question since we cannot even conceive of the system we have, let alone any reasonable alternatives.