When exiting the final session of the Continental Congress, they were asked by a citizen what they had done. One of the Founding Fathers purportedly said, “We have given you a republic — now see if you can keep it." They knew back then that straight-up democracies don’t work.
The following statement has been attributed to Alexander Tyler who was a Scottish history professor in the 1700s: “A democracy is always temporary in nature: It simply cannot exist as a permanent form of government. A democracy will continue to exist up until the voters discover that they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority will always vote for the candidates who promise the most benefits from the public treasury. The result being every democracy will finally collapse due to loose fiscal policy, (which is) always followed by a dictatorship."
Over at Protein Wisdom, they are taking the vote darkly: