Linder was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and graduated with a bachelor's degree from Pomona College in Claremont, California, in 1988, then worked as a researcher for CNN on the Evans & Novak political show, and then at The American Spectator. In 1989, Linder moved to New York City, New York to become a comedian, but after being unsuccessful, he got a job as a mailman at the United States Postal Service, which Linder enjoyed as he got to travel around New York City delivering mail. In 2000, he launched Vanguard News Network, which is a website that has anti- Jewish and racist articles and posts. Linder went under the alias John Locker, when launching the website, as he did not want to lose his job by revealing his indenity. In 2003, Linder decided to quit his job as mailman, as VNN was making a lot of profit from t-shirt sales, book sales and donations, Linder decided to reveal his true identity. In 2007 Linder moved to New Orleans, Louisiana and bought an old plantation, which he turned into an organic farm, where he grows organic vegetables and eggs and sells them local businesses and farmers markets, according to Linder he operates the farm by himself and in 2017, he has claimed he makes about $500,000 a year
On May 26, 2007, Linder organized what has been described as a "racially charged protest" linked to the Channon Christian and Christopher Newsom murder case in Knoxville, Tennessee, that attracted 30 supporters, around 60 counterprotesters, and 300 law enforcement officers. Linder fought with police and was the only person arrested. He was charged with disorderly conduct, resisting arrest, vandalism, and assault on a police officer. He was placed on six months probation and ordered to pay restitution to the police officer whom he assaulted.
Linder is an ex-member of the National Alliance, a Holocaust Denial, White Separatist, neo-Nazi, and White nationalist group. He left after deciding to allow criticism of the National Alliance to appear on the VNN forums.
The ADL claims that in January 2005, Linder announced his intention to set up the White Freedom Party, stating it was "America's first political party advocating Aryan interests and specifically naming the Jew as the agent of white genocide and greatest obstacle to our people's self-preservation as a distinct and protected people." It threatened to "WAGE NONSTOP WAR on the Jews, coloreds, and mainstream sellouts ...". Lacking financial backing, the "White Freedom Party" is currently dormant.
In 2004, Linder began publishing a tabloid newspaper called The Aryan Alternative. Four issues were published as of July 2010—the first issue was published in mid-2004. The most recent issue, July 2010 (#4), was published in mid-2009. The newspaper is distributed for free, but donations for it are solicited online.
In articles he has written for The Aryan Alternative newspaper, Linder claims that the Jews have been and are consciously engaged in a conspiracy that is implementing a systematic program of genocide to totally eradicate and exterminate the Aryan race.