A Democracy Checklist

Steven Heydemann suggests "some canary-in-the-coalmine indicators that will give us a good indication whether the Jasmine Revolution will turn out to be a true turning point for Tunisia and the Arab world":

Will the opposition be able to form an effective coalition and begin to build the apparatus needed to compete in the upcoming elections?  Will the ongoing negotiations over the composition of the caretaker government produce a meaningful role for the opposition, as opposed to vanity roles that provide window-dressing for what is likely to be a “neo-RCD”? 

Will Islamists respond to their exclusion from the caretaker government through negotiation, through efforts to secure a seat at the political table via elections, or through some other route?  Will the caretaker government implement its recent decisions to lift restrictions on civil society?  Will it support independent media and end the massive system of controls through which Ben Ali’s regime regulated communications technologies and media content?