“MOST Englishmen until very lately, if told that they were not self-governing, would have laughed in your face.
“But now a dim suspicion has begun to arise in the minds of at least a section of the people that this historic optimism is not quite as true as it looks, that the electors do not as a fact control the representatives, and that the representatives do not as a fact control the Government, that something alien has intervened between electors and elected, between legislature and Executive, something that deflects the working of representative institutions.
“That thing is the Party System.”
~Hilaire Belloc & Cecil Chesterton: The Party System, Part I. (1911)