Open Letter to Cory Booker - from Take Back NJ
Why do you go to political bosses George Norcross & Joe D to raise money for your 2020 campaign?
pride flag
Teaneck Council refuses to fly the Pride flag.
Why?
NJ climate crisis activists lobby Congress
Ananya Singh is 16.
The climate crisis is a very real threat to my generation.
Soak the Rich graphic in yellow
NJ ranks 12th-highest in income inequality.
And NJ has a budget crisis.
Green New Deal House protest
Green New Deal is PRIORITY.
Where does our new House delegation stand?

Latest Posts

Two Snaps Up to The Opinion Mill

Steven Hart at The Opinion Mill pretty much says all that has to be said about the Star-Ledger’s bizarre endorsement of Doug Forrester for governor.  Let’s face it, something is very strange and very wrong about that endorsement.  It isn’t right on the surface of it and Hart goes beneath the surface to show how many ways it diverges from reality.  Maybe the Star-Ledger has decided to leave the reality-based community.

Trying to get my head around newspaper endorsements

Yesterday the Star Ledger endorsed Forrester.

obscenely high property taxes — highest per capita in the nation — are only a symptom of the chronic illnesses that infect New Jersey: an antiquated tax structure, runaway spending and a culture of corruption that rewards the politically connected.

With reservations, we have come to believe that Republican Doug Forrester is the shock therapy the state needs.

They think Forrester will stand up against the corruption and Corzine won’t, despite track records showing the reverse:  Forrester’s involvement with state contracts and Corzine’s standing up to the Bergen County Dem chair over Loretta Weinberg’s state senate seat.

And today they endorsed Jun Choi for mayor of Edison.

Our pick is Choi. … he is an energetic and determined politician, as evidenced by his convincing argument to the township council to support an ordinance limiting pay-to-play political contributions.

Moreover, Choi’s polish and persuasiveness can help attract the high-tech companies Edison needs to restore its industrial tax base.

I can’t seriously imagine anyone going to the polls voting for Choi and Forrester. I suggest the editorial board rethink their endorsement of Forrester.  It outdoes even the NY Times endorsement of Bloomberg (which they have not chosen to keep up on their website – you have to pay to read it).

NJ pols not so sure about Scalito (even Forrester)

Statement from Jon Corzine on the nomination of Samuel ‘Scalito’ Alito Jr to replace O’Connor on the Supreme Court:

“While I am pleased that a New Jerseyan has been nominated to the Supreme Court, I am concerned that it is an attempt by President Bush to appease radical conservatives in his party who derailed Harriet Miers’ nomination before she even had a hearing.

 â€œThe U.S. Senate has a responsibility to provide advice and consent on the president’s judicial appointments.  That responsibility takes on increased significance when the Supreme Court justice being replaced is a voice of moderation and restraint.  Justice Sandra Day O’Connor was often the swing vote in cases affecting the rights of every American.

“Justice O’Connor was the first woman ever appointed to our nation’s highest judicial body. With the selection of Judge Alito, the President has failed to make the court more representative, and failed to open the court to individuals of diverse backgrounds. The Supreme Court ought to look more like the face of America, not less.

“The Senate is not a rubber stamp, and I will take all actions necessary to ensure that the next justice is not an ideological activist who would reverse decades of progress on issues of choice, the right to privacy, civil rights, the rights of consumers, federalism, the scope of executive power, and government’s ability to help those Americans who need it most.

“While I look forward to learning all I can about Judge Alito, based on what I know so far, I am deeply concerned that he will dramatically shift the balance of the Court to the right.

Run like a Moderate, Govern like a Radical

Doug Forrester is trying to pass himself off as a moderate.

This is the same Doug Forrester who invited Karl Rove to campaign for him, a trip in which Mr. Rove said that liberals wanted “therapy and understanding” for terrorists.

This is the Doug Forrester who joined hands with his primary challengers and declared “Unity in our Party is everything!”  A statement that was cheered by RNC chairman Ken Mehlman, who also happened to be President Bush’s campaign manager.  From the beginning, Mehlman made it clear that the national Republican Party would back Forrester to the hilt – which is fine (and somewhat expected), but you don’t get that kind of backing for a wishy-washy return.

Drink Liberally in New Brunswick

The newest chapter of Drinking Liberally starts up tomorrow in New Brunswick.

Drinking Liberally is (believe it or not) a national organization that began with one chapter in New York in 2003. It has grown to more than 110 chapters across the country, but this is only the third in New Jersey – the other two are in Hoboken and Princeton.

The NB chapter will meet on the 1st and 3rd Tuesdays of each month at 7:00 PM at Doll’s Place, which is located at 101 Paterson St – just three short blocks from George St. Click here for a map of the location.

If you’re interested in joining the New Brunswick group, just drop by tomorrow night, or send an email to Emily asking to be put on their email list to get reminders of meetings.

To learn more about Drinking Liberally, or to find a chapter near you, visit DrinkingLiberally.org.

Time to Choose

The community here has waxed poetically on the choice Jon Corzine will make on the Senate seat. Who will represent the progressive community on which issue; who will win North, Central or South Jersey; who represents the ideals of progressives, Democrats or New Jerseyans.

These are all important questions, but BlueJersey should think of one very important thing while making their choice.

The Republicans.

More on the flip…

Eight stories

When we hear about military fatalities on the news, they’re usually reported as numbers. Thirty six of the 2000+ military personnel killed in Iraq so far have been from New Jersey. Behind each of these numbers is a rarely reported story of tragedy: families are torn apart, parents lose their children, children are left without a parent and newlyweds become widows. (There’s more below)

Forms of Honesty

People now say, by a clear majority, that they cannot trust Bush and his administration. Any of us in public office know that people are skeptical about the honesty of politicians. The immediate concern in the papers today has to do with the specific illegal lying that is perjury, but people are equally troubled, I think, by other less direct forms of prevarication. Forrester says he is opposed on principle to embryonic stem cell research. Then he’s for it. He tells the NJ pro-life assemblage that he’s with them, and then he says he’s pro-choice.

In Washington the Republican leadership is saying that it is Katrina that makes it necessary for them to loosen clean air standards, remove Davis-Bacon livable wage protection, introduce school vouchers for religious and private schools, cut student loans by $15 billion (for an average student, that might  mean an increase in cost of $5,000), cut Medicaid, cut food stamps, cut child support enforcement. People say to me: “Why don’t the Republicans just say ‘These are things we don’t want to do because we don’t believe in them, rather than blaming it on Katrina?'” It’s a form of lying that gets in the way of good government. Among all the reasons that I support Jon Corzine (good fiscal sense, attention to higher education, good ideas about innovative economic growth, etc, etc) one thing I like best is that he’s straight with the people of New Jersey.

The Plame game

Friday’s indictment of Scooter Libby, Vice President Cheney’s Chief of Staff, for obstruction of justice, perjury, and making false statements is indicative of this Administration’s larger plan to forward its agenda at any cost, and it was the American people that paid – until now.  It is plain now that from the start the Bush Administration was committed to making its case for the Iraq War, and it would not let the facts get in the way.  Where the evidence differed from their script, they ignored it, buried it, and destroyed the credibility of those who brought it forth, and evidence suggests they did so illegally.  

We must remember that any disclosure of covert identities has damaging effects on our country’s human intelligence collection capabilities.  We ask many men and women to take risks around the world to collect information in order to prevent war and protect the safety and effectiveness of our soldiers.  When a leak like this happens, there is a ripple of damage.  Not only is the original covert operative compromised, but so are all the people who had contact with her overseas.  The people with whom Valerie Plame dealt with overseas – other covert agents and informants, for example – have almost certainly been compromised.  

To provide the oversight we are obligated to do, Congress must examine how this leak occurred, assess the damage to current and future intelligence collection, and review options for preventing similar episodes in the future.  Our intelligence professionals need to know that Congress will help them preserve their cover, which is the only real protection they have in their often dangerous job collecting information to protect America.

My central point is: whatever happens in the courts, Congress owes it to our intelligence operatives to exert oversight in this matter.

I will be appearing on CBS’s 60 Minutes, tonight at 7:00 p.m. discussing the Plame leak and its consequences. I hope you’ll tune in, and I welcome your comments.