Jeremy Scahill, author of Dirty Wars, to speak in New Jersey on 4/28/13

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These are very sobering and frightening times. Not only have we reached an important milestone – 10 years after the original invasion of Iraq on March 19, 2003 – but we have reached a critical juncture in our country’s history of dealing with violence, whether that violence is taking place here at home or part of U.S. foreign policy abroad. It is sad to contemplate how long this war and the war in Afghanistan have dragged on, how many American, Iraqi and Afghan lives have been lost or disrupted, and how almost $2 trillion, if not more, has been spent on wars seemingly without end. And still there are those voices clamoring for war against Iran, Syria, North Korea or Mali, instead of pushing for reliance on increased diplomacy and a complete end to ongoing (and sometimes, covert) wars.

New Jersey Peace Action is deeply concerned about the human, environmental and financial impacts of continued and long-term U.S. involvement in multiple wars and its seeming willingness to expand that involvement. NJPA is also concerned about how the bombings at the Boston Marathon a week ago will translate into U.S. foreign and domestic policies – will there be new examples of martial law here at home or calls for additional strikes abroad or both?  

Remembering a Progressive hero: Frank Herbert’s story

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Yesterday I had the pleasure of catching up with one of the best public servants New Jersey has ever produced.

He is not well-known even in Democratic circles, let alone the state of New Jersey, and he last served in public office when Leonid Brezhnev was Premier of the USSR.

Frank Herbert, however is definitely not someone to forget, particularly if you’re a New Jersey Democrat or – even more so – a progressive.

You see, Frank Herbert did 2 things that New Jerseyans and progressives should forever be grateful for:

1) He pushed for and got the Legislature to pass the law that created New Jersey Transit, a system that provides business and social lifelines for hundreds of thousands of our residents.

2) He is the only candidate in New Jersey history to win a Federal election as a write-in candidate. In doing so, he saved the Democratic Party from nominating a Holocaust-denying, KKK-loving extremist.

His story is in the extended section below.  

Jenn Beck Divorces Her Commitment Against Marriage Equality

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Jennifer Beck voted against gay marriage in 2009 claiming that’s what her constituents wanted.  She swore she’d stand firm on this issue. (Even though as an Assemblywoman in the same 12th District she supported the 2nd class Civil Unions law on behalf of the same constituents).

She claimed she’d never back down.

But that was before Long Branch, Ocean Grove, Asbury Park and other LGBT friendly towns became part of her district.

Now all of sudden Senator Beck is ready to support the very legislation she opposed. Her flip-flop on marriage equality is an insult to the LGBT community.

Are we now expected to believe that these are her true convictions? Or was she voting with her conscience when she voted the first two times around? At that point, Governor Corzine would have signed marriage equality into law. Christie has vowed to veto any such measure.

Beck threw us under the bus when she voted against equality when she thought that that would advance her political career with a Governor-elect Christie.

Douglas Herbert Gets General Wesley Clark Endorsement

Earlier today, Douglas Herbert’s Congressional Campaign announced they had secured the endorsement of General Wesley Clark, former NATO Supreme Allied Commander. The announcement, now prominently displayed on the homepages of both the Doug Herbert Campaign and WesPAC, emphasizes Herbert’s military service and continued dedication towards service as a human-rights lawyer. The endorsement closed with the message, “I endorse Douglas Herbert not simply because he is the right choice for New Jersey’s Eleventh District, but because he is the right choice to help move our country forward.”

This endorsement comes at a critical moment for Douglas Herbert, who is locked in a race against eight-term incumbent and fourteenth richest member of Congress Rodney Frelinghuysen for the seat representing New Jersey’s eleventh district. Veterans issues, which will surely come to the forefront of this contest following the endorsement, is not an area where Frelinghuysen could claim an advantage after both voting against the GI Bill and receiving low marks from the League of Disabled Veterans. Douglas Herbert has made it a priority of his to ensure that military hospitals and the VA receive the funding they need.

Douglas Herbert’s Campaign is quickly gaining traction. What was once a token opposition to a safe Republican seat is quickly gathering momentum in grassroots donors and volunteer-driven campaigning. General Wesley Clark’s endorsement, one of just two nationwide as of this writing, is sure to do a world of good for Douglas Herbert.

BlueJerseyRadio welcomes Douglas Herbert, Congressional candidate in NJ-11

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Each week, Blue Jersey Radio streams LIVE with Jersey’s latest political buzz, interviews with newsmakers, and your stimulating calls Number: (646) 652-2773.

Tonight we’ll learn all about Douglas Herbert’s bid to unseat Rodney Frelinghuysen in NJ-11. In the meantime, even if you live outside NJ’s 11th Congressional district, you can join Douglas Herbert’s FaceBook group and help spread the word. Or, check out his website.

You won’t want to miss an episode – and of course, you never have to. Listen to them all on Blogtalkradio, or download any show on iTunes.