This week on CounterSpin: The evils of earmarks. Barack Obama signed a spending bill "stuffed with earmarks," the media tell us--despite the fact that he campaigned pledging to reform that practice. The assumption is that Congressional earmarks are bad; but are they? We'll ask Melissa Harris-Lacewell, associate professor of politics and African-American studies at Princeton University.
Also this week: The International Criminal Court's indictment on March 4th of Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir was cheered by the media and by some progressive Darfur groups. But not everyone thought the indictment was wise or well-timed. We'll talk to Harvard scholar and former advisor to the African Union's mediation team on Darfur, Alex de Waal about the indictment and what it might mean for the fragile peace in the region.
— In Defense of Earmarks, by Melissa Harris-Lacewell (Kitchen Table, 3/9/09)
— Uncharted Waters, by Alex de Waal (Making Sense of Darfur, 3/5/09)