The Lying McCarthyist ‘Daily Banter’ Staff Just Published One Lie Too Many

Caitlin Johnstone
6 min readJun 12, 2017

Who’s ready for some gossip???

In a recent article I detailed how Daily Banter writer Jeremy Fassler knowingly and deliberately published a McCarthyite lie that I write propaganda for the Russian government as part of a larger smear piece against woke lefty journalists that he ran last week. I showed how Fassler had lied, and I showed how he had known at the time that he was lying, and, just as an added bonus, Fassler even appeared in the comments section of my article defending his right to publish lies about me (archived here, here, here, and here because he likes to delete comments).

Daily Banter editor Ben Cohen behaved in a similar manner to Fassler when contacted for a retraction, citing, as Fassler did, the fact that he disagrees with my work as somehow legitimate grounds for his behavior. Cohen refused to publish the (generous, in my opinion) retraction I offered him, instead opting to double down on his lies and assert that I had knowingly allowed multiple Russian propaganda outlets to publish my work:

I told Cohen that if he ever lied about me again it would mean war and he’d be facing legal action, and I published our correspondence online:

Cohen, apparently under the illusion that it is his right to bully and intimidate people in private, free from the prying eyes of public scrutiny, did not like that at all:

And I posted that email as well:

Cohen then made one final attempt at intimidation and scuttled off:

Hours later, Cohen’s “warning” came to fruition in the form of yet another unimpressive smear piece, this one directed at me and featuring an admittedly highly unflattering photo. I didn’t mind that (the article was basically just Cohen disagreeing with my take on things using a lot of hyperbole and snark), but I do take issue with the part where he told his publication’s readers that I don’t have a journalism degree:

I take issue with the highlighted portion of text because Cohen is lying. Again. I am actually a highly-trained journalist who graduated with distinction from the most esteemed journalism program in Australia. Which I mentioned in the Rantt News response I’d used to demonstrate that Jeremy Fassler was knowingly lying about me in my previous article.

Saying I’ve never “been around” other journalists is also a lie; I come from a family of journalists. Here’s a Melbourne Press Club article about my dad from just last month.

So to recap, a news outlet knowingly jeopardized my personal safety by telling many thousands of readers that I’m a subversive Kremlin propagandist bent on sabotaging their democracy, then revised that lie to state that I have knowingly allowed multiple propaganda outlets to republish my work, then told its readers that I have no journalism training. All lies. All because I disagree with their opinions. They think they can publish libelous, dangerous McCarthyist lies about me all because I disagree with their opinions.

It’s not okay for a media outlet to use its platform to deliberately circulate dangerous lies about people just because they don’t toe the establishment line. Men like Ben Cohen and Jeremy Fassler of the Daily Banter and Jossif Ezekilov of Rantt News think the fact that they disagree with my opinion is a perfectly valid reason to tell their readers that I’m conducting psy-ops on behalf of a hostile government in order to harm them and their country, and that I in fact have no training in journalism at all. It is not okay. That is not a legitimate way to approach life, people, or journalism.

There are many things you can write about me to bring me down that are entirely factual. Here is a list.
— I’m a shitty housekeeper. I don’t dust and my windows are, hmmm… how best to put this? Very flattering. In a soft focus sort of way. Betty White looks Christina Aguilera-like through my windows. Needless to say they won’t be doing a Vogue Living walkthrough of my house any time soon.
— I’m a terrible runner. Just awful. Think Phoebe crossed with Melissa “What are you — Kenyan?” McCarthy. It’s all boobs and hair and things continuing to jiggle long after they should have stopped.
— I have a weird sort of number dyslexia. Just numbers, not letters. I either read them funny, or remember them badly, or something, I don’t know, all I know is they get lost in translation. Don’t ever get me to do your data entry, you will spend as much time fixing it as I did doing it. And on that, serious apologies to Tom at my first ever real job back in 1994 at TNT Magazine in London who so patiently hid all the horrific mistakes I made taking calls for the classifieds. Particularly the one where I charged a very posh lady from Maidenhead some horrific sum for her “seeking nanny” ad. I still grimace when I think about that. No wonder they gave me the camera and said “Good god, just go! Go get us a story.”
— I worked as an industrial cleaner, cleaning up after house fires, and as a regular cleaner of houses. I’ve worked bars and waitressed too, in some fairly dicey places. I was a really good waitress though, I can’t let you have that one.
— I did write an astrology book. That is me. I also wrote some fiction about angels, a book on how to play the harmonica and a whole lot of other non-political things. I taught Bollywood dancing to seniors as well. Frivolous, I know!
— I have a skinny latte addiction.

Media outlets are free to accuse me of all of the above, call me any name you like, insult me, deride my work; that’s all fine. If you want to harm my reputation there are many ways you can do that without lying. And as an added bonus, they won’t ruin your career with a massive lawsuit like the one the Daily Banter is about to get slapped with.

— — —

Thanks for reading! If you enjoyed this, please consider helping me out by sharing it around, liking me on Facebook, following me on Twitter, or even tossing me some money on Patreon so I can keep this gig up.