I've been reading the coverage, and watching the pundits. This appears to be the new line of dissent:
"Yes, Iraqis voted today in massive numbers. But voting isn't democracy."
I agree. But that's also like saying that the best college basketball team didn't win the NCAA championship. It may be true, but they ARE wearing the rings. Wanna see my purple finger?
Meanwhile, one of Andrew Sullivan's readers suggests: "Why not ask people to wear blue marker on their index fingers this week, as a sign of solidarity and a tip of the hat to the courage of the Iraqis today?"
Good suggestion. I hope that the meme spreads. And read this post on turnout by Roger Simon: "Before the spin doctors get a hold of the 'how big was the turnout' question in Iraq (60%? 70%?) and use that to denigrate this great step forward that has just taken place, let's remind ourselves that turnout in recent US Presidential elections is barely over 50% of eligible voters and that in the nascent days of our democracy, 1824, it was 26.9%."