Indy Blog

“We think your paper is amazing,” the head of a small progressive foundation told me over lunch this summer.  “But,” she added, “more people should be reading it. And we want to help.”

My jaw dropped.

The Indypendent has been New York City’s radical newspaper for 16 years. In this short video, members of the Indy collective describe what it’s like to work on the paper and why they continue to be passionate about creating “a free paper for a free people.”

A crowd of members of Movement for Justice in El Barrio marched into an East Harlem Zoning planning meeting on Thursday night, December 15, to “express the voice of the women, men, elderly, girls and boys that would be the most affected by Mayor de Blasio’s luxury housing plan.” The meeting was a public hearing convened by the de Blasio administration. Families, including small children and babies, all members of Movement for Justice in El Barrio, decked out in light blue T-shirts, lined the walls of the hearing room at the Silberman School of Social Work.

December 10th marks the U.N. Human Rights Day, celebrating and upholding the indispensable and crucial declaration of universal human rights.On the eve of this event, I visited a refugee camp housing 700 families in Kabul. Conditions in refugee camps can be deplorable, intolerable. Here, the situation is best described as surreal.

Victory….for now

After eight months, starting with a few hundred young Native Americans and swelling to up to 15,000 people in the sprawling encampments of Standing Rock, North Dakota, a victory was celebrated.  

Black Mirror, the popular British science fiction show available on Netflix, presents a series of vignettes cataloging dystopias both near and far. The show tries to tap into our particular fears — about technology, about media, about celebrity — in order to diagnose our anxieties about the ever-expanding digital age and beyond.

All political tendencies are caught in a whirlpool since the election, but none more so than the left. It lacks any recognizable center, despite the meteoric rise of Bernie Sanders. It appears in and around the Democratic Party in unconnected, isolated circumstances, fragments of the population. Not only are the fragments disconnected from one another, they also suffer from isolation from the previous generation, which in turn had lost touch with its own predecessor.

Opposition to the Dakota Access Pipeline began in October 2014. Young warriors of the Standing Rock Sioux established the Sacred Stone Camp in April 2016. Since then, native and non-native supporters have joined in non-violent resistance under the leadership of tribal elders.

And suddenly, as thousands of US veterans arrived in North Dakota, Obama blinked, and kicked the can further down the road. The people have won an important victory in the struggle for native rights and against climate change.

Without holding a single hearing, Congress granted law enforcement sweeping new surveillance powers, allowing changes to the obscure Rule 41 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure to take effect at midnight on Thursday. The updates greatly expand the U.S. government’s ability to spy on Americans and people around the world; to hack millions of computers without users’ knowledge or consent.