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One Incontrovertible, Unequivocal, Undeniable Fact Which Refutes the Diary

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  • Originally posted by Sir Robert Anderson View Post
    One has to realize that almost all of the (living) major Ripperologists know very little about the ins and outs of the every winding Diary story. NONE of them know squat about the Watch.

    It is not a knock against Don, nor any of the other learned league of Ripper scholars. They've never cared about it nor devoted their time to it. It is outside their field of interest. That is their prerogative and considering how psychotic the "debate" on these boards has been in the not so distant past, I can't blame them. They're just not "expert witnesses" with respect to things Maybrick.
    That's a very good point, Sir Robert.

    One can hardly be expected to demonstrate expertise in a topic if one has always expressed a bored disinterest in it.

    It's puzzling why respected experts in one field are all too often presumed to have expertise on the same level in any other field you care to name. It can often be the reverse, in that an expert may specialise in his subject to an extent that does not allow him to acquire a basic layman's grounding in others.

    In short, the best experts are those who stick to what they know best. The worst are those who claim to know everything about everything, most of it outside their field of vision, never mind interest.

    Love,

    Caz
    X
    "Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious." Peter Ustinov


    Comment


    • The diary was dismissed along with Maybrick, and many other minor
      suspects, as not worth talking about .. just as a minor note of interest
      to add to the content of the tour.


      A very accurate assessment of the diary as it exists at present.

      It remains without provenance (which would be crucial were it a work of art) or "chain of evidence (vital for validity in court). It bears all the hallmarks of forgery - the missing pages; the use of an album not a notebook or journal; a lack of match in handwriting - if this were a van Gogh or a Leonardo such difference in artistic "technique" would at once render its authenticity dubious.

      Among other things it adds not one iota of knowledge to the record of the crimes in terms of fact or explanation, and it shows every sign of having been based on published material about the Whitechapel murders available quite recently, but not VERY recently.

      The onus lies with those who believe in the legitimacy of the diary (and the watch) and to place them unreservedly in the hands of independent experts (scientists, handwriting experts, those agreed as having knowledge of the LVP and of Maybrick and his associates - perhaps of the police to explore whether fraud is involved) for as long as is required to evaluate according to the standards and to the extent required by opponents, or scientific satisfaction. And for those who own the diary to agree beforehand to abide by the outcome of those scientific and expert tests

      Only when that had been done can we begin to discuss whether these "artifacts" have any value to anyone or any historical value whatsoever.

      Agree to that, and I might begin to take the diary seriously - though I doubt that the owners, "believers" and those with a financial stake in the items have the confidence ever to allow it.

      Phil
      Last edited by Phil H; 07-19-2010, 10:25 PM. Reason: edited to correct a tense

      Comment


      • Originally posted by Phil H View Post
        [B][I]
        It remains without provenance (which would be crucial were it a work of art) or "chain of evidence (vital for validity in court). It bears all the hallmarks of forgery - the missing pages; the use of an album not a notebook or journal; a lack of match in handwriting - if this were a van Gogh or a Leonardo such difference in artistic "technique" would at once render its authenticity dubious.

        Among other things it adds not one iota of knowledge to the record of the crimes in terms of fact or explanation, and it shows every sign of having been based on published material about the Whitechapel murders available quite recently, but not VERY recently.
        Nicely put, Phil, but the 'tin matchbox empty' bit firmly places the thing as a product of the late 1980s as far as I'm concerned though some will argue that a businessman in Liverpool could have had access to secret Scotland Yard files. As if.
        allisvanityandvexationofspirit

        Comment


        • Special pleading is never for a good argument for authenticity Stephen (I refer to your comment about SY files, although I have never seen the claim made).

          If we were talking of a work of art, the diary would fall on almost every account:

          * where had it been from 1889 or whenever and being revealed to the world? A work of art needs a trail of ownership "provenance" that is as near unbroken as possible.

          * the "technique" differs in that Maybrick's known handwriting is wholly disimmilar to that in the diary - why?

          * the format is peculiar - why write in the "wrong" sort of book? (This might be explained if other things were not worrying such as the ink and handwriting.)

          * it is easier to assume that a modern forger could only find an album of the right date, removed used pages and then wrote - that no proper "journal" could be obtained for the right period. Occam's razor argues against the explanations I have seen.

          * there have been claims of forgery from people close to the "discovery" that remain unexplained and undermine any excuses to explain the "rightness" of provenance and technique.

          * tests on the ink have not been fully completed or independently enough. the diary has to be surrendered and tested in a way that allows its "owners" and other stakeholders no interference.

          * a genuine document - and this is MHO, but I think a reasonable assumption - would have provided insights into things we did not know, provided explanations, made links otherwise unperceived. (To give one example - a mention of an address used by the author of the diary that could then be proved, from directories or censuses to have been his.) But it does none of those things. It steers oh so carefully around researchable facts. It's clever, but not convincing (unless you want it to be).

          * it's owners have treated it as a potential "cash-cow" rather than donating it to a library and to genuine researchers to use as they see fit. Alas, the JtR literature is all to filled with fraud (or something near it) from McCormack to Knight, and with special pleading for unconvincing suspects.

          Sorry, I smell a rat, and have done since I became aware of the "silence" imposed on some leading ripperologists before the publication of the diary. That, I'll admit, coloured my perceptions from day one - publication was about making money and gaining publicity, not about truth - and that is not the way that genuine research is done.

          Phil

          Comment


          • Again nicely put, Phil.

            Did you see my friend Sam Flynn's analysis on the forums?

            Well worth printing out.

            http://www.jtrforums.com/showthread.php?t=8456
            allisvanityandvexationofspirit

            Comment


            • Originally posted by Phil H View Post
              * it is easier to assume that a modern forger...
              Indeed it is, Phil.

              As it is easier to assume that the diary and watch owners have never allowed tests; that there was no prior agreement to allow results to be published, whatever they indicated; that the police have not investigated and failed to find anyone to prosecute; that people with vested interests are constantly pushing the artefacts as genuine, and so on and so on ad nauseam.

              I would say that easily 99% of those of us with some knowledge of this subject are happy to conclude that the diary was not written by James Maybrick or Jack the Ripper. But equally, those with the most information at our fingertips, and the most personal experience of the people and issues involved (some of these people's names have never been revealed, along with their roles in the affair), tend to admit that beyond that we are very much stumped when it comes to claiming anything definite about dating, authorship or motivation. If other commentators think they know better when the diary was created, by whom or why, then all I can say is good luck to them.

              It's well worth pointing out that if this is Sam's textual analysis, it is based on a shabby modern internet transcript and not the original. As such, it is an analysis of someone else's shabby modern work, and not the work of the actual hoaxer.

              I don't know how anyone could think that was an acceptable way to analyse anything. But again, good luck.

              Love,

              Caz
              X
              "Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious." Peter Ustinov


              Comment


              • Originally posted by Phil H View Post
                * tests on the ink have not been fully completed or independently enough. the diary has to be surrendered and tested in a way that allows its "owners" and other stakeholders no interference.
                I take it you our pulling our legs on this one.

                I assume you realize that the "pro-Diarists" are the ones that paid good money to have the best tests run by an independent lab (Leeds), and that Harris' AFI tests were done on samples not taken directly from the Diary and stored in such a fashion that no respectable lab would have accepted them for testing.

                That's not opinion. It's all out there on the Forums and the Casebook. Start with the "Live at Leeds" thread and plough on from there.

                There are currently no tests available that can tell us precisely when ink hit page.

                This "test it now, do all the tests" are nothing but the rantings of madmen. The tests HAVE been done. Track them all down and read every page, and look at every exhibit. Then we'll talk.

                Jarndyce Antiquarian Booksellers, who specialize in the area, opined then and opine now that it is a genuine Victorian document, written in a Victorian handwriting style, by a Victorian. They have no interest whatsoever in the Ripper case, and could care less if Maybrick wrote it. But they do think we are a bunch of idiots for ignoring their opinion.

                Originally posted by caz View Post
                I would say that easily 99% of those of us with some knowledge of this subject are happy to conclude that the diary was not written by James Maybrick or Jack the Ripper.
                I'm probably the sole Maybrickian still at large, although my conversion is relatively recent.

                The problem with saying the Watch and the Diary are not Maybrick and Ripper linked is you've got to come up with a reasonable explanation for how they were gotten INTO and then OUT of Battlecrease. That is no simple task.
                Last edited by Casebook Wiki Editor; 07-20-2010, 12:21 PM.
                Managing Editor
                Casebook Wiki

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                • If I remember rightly, Sir Robert, the diary was also 'surrendered and tested in a way that allows its "owners" and other stakeholders no interference' in 1993 in America, a year before the Leeds and AFI testing, and the testing team were commissioned to find it a modern fake. One ink specialist endorsed the 'not inconsistent with the period' results of Dr Eastaugh in 1992, while the other eventually concluded that ink had hit paper 'prior to 1970'.

                  You couldn't make it up about all this refusing to allow tests crap - and yet people are still doing it like simple sheep.

                  Love,

                  Caz
                  X
                  "Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious." Peter Ustinov


                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by caz View Post

                    You couldn't make it up about all this refusing to allow tests crap - and yet people are still doing it like simple sheep.
                    If you repeat a lie often enough on the Internet, some of it sticks.

                    Look at it this way: if you were new to the subject, and started poking around the Casebook threads on the Diary, what would you think ?

                    One of the funnier points is the argument that the Diary is a cash cow. Harrison spent her advance funding testing. Did Robert Smith see any money out of it ? Nein, meine Damen und Herren. And you, Caz ? Funding holidays on the Riviera with your ill gotten gains ?

                    Which individual might have made a few extra coins if you believe that the Diary chapter added to the sales of Harris' book on D'onston ? Why, Melvin. And I don't begrudge him the money, just calling a spade a spade.
                    Managing Editor
                    Casebook Wiki

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                    • Originally posted by Sir Robert Anderson View Post
                      And you, Caz ? Funding holidays on the Riviera with your ill gotten gains ?
                      Hardly. I went through a lot of my personal savings just to live while I was working all hours on Ripper Diary. My choice entirely - no pressure, no complaints, no expectations. The whole experience was a pleasure as far as I'm concerned. I was going to say from start to finish, but it ain't finished yet.

                      But no apologies either. They can stuff that.

                      Love,

                      Caz
                      X
                      "Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious." Peter Ustinov


                      Comment


                      • Caz, didn't the Blessed Michael Barratt receive royalties amounting to a scouser arm-and-a-leg, and blow the lot on wine, women and chips?

                        Graham

                        PS: I'm due for another read of your book, been a long time.
                        We are suffering from a plethora of surmise, conjecture and hypothesis. - Sherlock Holmes, The Adventure Of Silver Blaze

                        Comment


                        • I went through a lot of my personal savings just to live while I was working all hours on Ripper Diary. My choice entirely - no pressure, no complaints, no expectations. The whole experience was a pleasure as far as I'm concerned.

                          Exactly, your choice, so I won't weep for you. But the fact is that long-term, the "diary" (I use the term loosely and ironically) could be a cash-cow through film rights etc for them what owns it.

                          But if you put your time and effort and resources into something that is not proven, that's an act of faith, nothing more. As you say - your choice.

                          Phil

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by Phil H View Post
                            But the fact is that long-term, the "diary" (I use the term loosely and ironically) could be a cash-cow through film rights etc for them what owns it.
                            Saying something could or might be a cash cow is far different then snidely declaring folks have made big bucks off it to date. BIG difference.

                            For all that Robert Smith has gone through, I hope he does finally see some financial reward. Same for Albert's widow.

                            The truth is that the Diary and the Watch have done very little good to date to those who have become involved with it. It has driven at least one poster over the edge, probably hastened the demise of Feldman and Harris, and ruined countless Ripper circle friendships and one marriage. I'm probably leaving a few disasters out but Caz will fill them in if I have.

                            The thing that I find surprising is that one of the few people in Ripperology that NO ONE has a bad word to say about is Keith Skinner, and he says he has gotten to the bottom of the story but is not yet free to reveal what he knows and what his proof is. And the reason for his silence is perfectly understandable: his results belong to the man that paid for the research.

                            But if you continue to crap all over the Diary and the Watch (which everyone conveniently neglects although it is the more damning piece of evidence) as simple charlatan work, then you are in fact crapping on Skinner. And as I've said, he's one of the few researchers all sides respect to the nth degree.

                            Someday we will know what he's found; until then we can only work backwards from what little he has said. Personally, I take great interest in his statement that he believes that a jury would be satisfied the Diary came out of Battlecrease, because if it did, it was stolen and that would be a criminal matter indeed. Ditto the Watch. So if they were purloined, it makes coming forward with the whole story rather difficult, doesn't it ? You are accusing someone or a group of people of stealing items from a house, and then accusing others of receiving stolen goods.

                            But if they were stolen, as I believe has been implied, it also means the owner of Battlecrease didn't necessarily know they were there, which leads to the thought they were hidden. Once you put a little age on these things, the "tin match box empty" gaffe suddenly switches to being a rather powerful argument for some degree of legitimacy for the Diary.

                            This is not at all the simple matter some wish to make it out to be.
                            Managing Editor
                            Casebook Wiki

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                            • This is not at all the simple matter some wish to make it out to be.

                              Who said it was?

                              Oh, what a tangled web we weave?

                              Please don't spin me stories about what someone might have found "and cannot release the info" until they are in a position to do so. Old cynics like me have been there before and seen the outcome.. I'll beieve it when I hear it.

                              As for the fates of those involved in the Diary saga to date, I'm very sorry to hear of misfortune attending anyone's life, but why is any of that relevant? they made choices to get involved, to invest time and money, to write books - I assume at the outset they had ambitions, aims, aspirations - so it amounts to them having made a choice.

                              Thanks for responding honestly though,

                              Phil

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by Phil H View Post

                                Please don't spin me stories about what someone might have found "and cannot release the info" until they are in a position to do so. Old cynics like me have been there before and seen the outcome.. I'll beieve it when I hear it.
                                It would be impossible to be more cynical than I. But Skinner is the one researcher on which everyone agrees on two things: he is honest and he will tell you the truth even if you don't want to hear it.

                                Personally, I have the feeling that the person financing his research was expecting the exact opposite result and for that reason is sitting on it. I may be wrong. I'm just one guy sitting in my sarong in Bahau, Malaysia as I type.

                                I have however have spent real money to have the Leeds results looked at; one of the guys was the former dean of research at the Harvard Medical School. Ink expert, no. But the Leeds test results don't require such expertise. Neither do many of the others. They are out there. Read them and you will see that that which can be done, has been. To say otherwise - and I am not saying you did - is simply to lie. We cannot tell when it was written but the weight of the tests indicate it is not of recent authorship. Maybe that is 1970; maybe 1888. Can't tell. But if it is pre-1980s you then have the tin box empty problem to deal with.

                                It boils down to something Harris said at the outset: if a forger used reconstituted Victorian ink in a Victorian era document after a year or so it would impossible to detect. So pro or con, we have no choice but to wait for Skinner's "proof". Arguments in the meantime are in some sense a profound waste of time. I can tell you first hand that there has been no visible change in the ink from the day it first slouched into Bethlehem to the current day, which in and of itself is a tough one to explain away. It also doesn't appear to have been written in one or two settings. There is quite a bit of handwriting variation between entries and it has more of a Diary "feel" than a simple reproduction can convey. It looks and feels, well, Victorian.

                                Originally posted by Phil H View Post
                                they made choices to get involved, to invest time and money, to write books - I assume at the outset they had ambitions, aims, aspirations - so it amounts to them having made a choice.Thanks for responding honestly though,
                                Phil
                                Of course they did it to make money. Robert Smith is a publisher. He hoped he had a best seller on his hands. Shirley wanted to write the best seller. Feldman wanted to produce a movie. Barrett wanted to sell the Diary. None of them were Ripperologists.

                                Maybe it is an American thing but I trust and understand profit motives. I respect wanting to make money. It's a good thing. It's the people doing stuff out of a sense of jihad that I don't get. And the anti-Diarists have a visceral hatred of the damn thing that I fail to understand.
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