For example, democracies tend to nurture utilitarian approaches to politics, based upon trying to establish the greatest happiness for the greatest number.Friendship, though, abhors "felicific calculus", preferring to build relationships.
Alternatively, companies can end up in court if they are seen to appoint without due regard for equal opportunities, for all that knowing someone before you appoint them is perhaps the only way of being sure they can do the job.
A second area of conflict between the values of friendship and democracy concerns justice.
The alternative measure is the extent to which democracy is conducive to friendship. It seems natural to assume that a democratic society is automatically a friendly one: its characteristic elements, like freedom of association, could only contribute to the flourishing of friendship.
Of itself, therefore, friendship might be thought as simply a by-product of democracy, if one that is highly desirable.
And friendship, without which the good life is simply impossible according to Aristotle, suffers.
For ancient philosophers friendship was a political problem too.
And as those involved in family law know, a litigious culture is one in which friendships struggle to thrive.
There are other points of tension between democracy and friendship.
Friendship cuts across this because it is not universal but is defined by its particularity.
To say "you are my friend" is meaningless if it does not imply that I regard you above the rest.