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  • Originally posted by erobitha View Post
    "There's an old Chinese proverb, he adds, "which says that when a finger points at the moon the imbecile looks at the finger. I thought Ripperologists had always been looking at the finger. I wanted to look at the moon. How is it that, in 1889, Florence Maybrick is accused of murder and then, in 1992, the man she was supposed to have killed is accused, in this rediscovered document, of being Jack the Ripper? It seemed so strange. And that," he says, "was what started me off.""
    - Taken from British GQ interview with Bruce Robinson
    Perhaps Robinson should have read Plato’s Theaetetus. You know, the bit about the Astrologer who was so busy staring at the moon and the stars that he stumbles into a ditch.

    When it comes to a questioned document, I’ll take the methods of Hume over Hegel any day of the week. Had Robinson and his researcher studied Michael Maybrick's movements on the dates of the murders, they may have found something very similar to a ditch.


    But then, I’m obviously under-educated. Had I spent time in the British public schools maybe I’d have been clever enough to have been fooled by a street-smart Scouser.


    Carry on!

    Comment


    • Originally posted by Iconoclast View Post

      Hi "RJ" (),

      You can try all you want to turn an irrelevant mention of an aunt into a smoking gun, but it isn't going to work. I appreciate you'll be disappointed, but it's pure cack, mate.

      You can't logic this one into a fatal mistake because it isn't and never will be. Maybrick either belived Florrie was off to see her 'aunt' because she had said so, or else he just got a bit muddled when he was writing his scrapbook. I honestly doubt he'd care about what to him was surely a barely-relevant fact.

      Maybrick [Thinks]: "I must get every fact in my scrapbook right - even though I'm writing it for my own pleasure. Who knows who might get confused in 130 years time or so if I'm not very careful about what I write, even though I'm much more focused on my feelings of hatred for Florrie and on renewing my murderous campaign that has gripped the entire world. Then again, it's a lot ******* quicker to just write 'aunt', is it not?"

      "Ike"
      I was actually thinking 'Sir Jim' might have found Bunny's sick 'Godmother' a bit of a mouthful, given Bongo's not inconsiderable difficulties in the wordy field.

      Of course, 'Sir Jim' could have been carelessly 'conflating' two visits to London by the strumpet: the one to Aunt M [his favourite initial!], and the one to the one he couldn't be arsed to spell.

      If non-murdering, non-arsenic eating authors could inadvertently 'conflate' two separate enquiries, two years apart, because of a natural but erroneous assumption that Mike's January 1995 affidavit would have been known about and investigated in January 1995...

      Well it was worth a try.

      Love,

      Caz
      X
      Last edited by caz; 08-05-2020, 12:07 PM.
      "Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious." Peter Ustinov


      Comment


      • Originally posted by Iconoclast View Post

        I think Orsam said that James Maybrick wouldn't have made that mistake, which is clearly a risible claim.
        It’s only a mistake if the lady wasn’t ever referred to as Florrie’s aunt within the family. That usage of the word has been common throughout my life and may well have been so in the 1880s.

        This isn’t mental gymnastics. You don’t need to break a sweat to see the possible flaw in Orsam’s logic.


        Comment


        • Originally posted by caz View Post

          What are you on about now? Editorial choices? I wasn't aware of the continuity issue until recently - 17 years after our book was published. I will consider the book trustworthy until someone points out any other issues they have found after 17 years. The major issue with this one is that we missed the serious matter of Melvin Harris and co deliberately keeping Mike's January 1995 affidavit firmly under wraps, so Shirley and co had no chance to discuss it with anyone, never mind investigate it, until after a version of it had been put up on the internet, presumably by one of Melvin's foot soldiers, in 1996 or 1997. I only wish we had appreciated this when preparing a narrative in 2002/3. Would that have made the tone of your posts today any less sneering?
          I think you missed replying to this part of my post:
          Well, you’ve certainly explained something but seeing as the book Inside Story unequivocally states the phone call took place “soon after Barrett’s affidavit was made public” and that Keith Skinner, as you know, has stated the phone call took place January 16th 1995, I’m not sure who’s getting caught with his or her pants down.
          It’s of course possible that Inside Story or Keith Skinner conflated two different conversations, but that is hardly anyone else’s fault, is it?
          Originally posted by caz View Post
          You tell me. Perhaps Mighty Mel possessed the same kind of unworldly and unhealthy power over his minions as his lordship could only dream of today.
          It’s just that you’ve stated Melvin Harris suppressed the affidavit, I was wondering how you know that?

          Comment


          • Originally posted by erobitha View Post

            Caz,

            Can I just say, as a fellow graduate from the university of life (I left school with 4 GCSE's) that I admire how well you have handled much of this nonsense being flung your way, by who I suspect many are academic pedants or failed writers themselves. I have seen your back catalogue of work, and a number of posters it seems to me lack the respect of your achievements.

            "There's an old Chinese proverb, he adds, "which says that when a finger points at the moon the imbecile looks at the finger. I thought Ripperologists had always been looking at the finger. I wanted to look at the moon. How is it that, in 1889, Florence Maybrick is accused of murder and then, in 1992, the man she was supposed to have killed is accused, in this rediscovered document, of being Jack the Ripper? It seemed so strange. And that," he says, "was what started me off.""
            - Taken from British GQ interview with Bruce Robinson

            Often those who are ensconced in the world of academic theory and census-searching lack the ability to understand humanity and it's very nature. Life is full of nuance and not every answer is found through cross-checking endless reams of witness testimony or official records. Some of it you have to colour in the blanks yourself using a mixture of logic, life experience and good old fashion cop on. Unsolved crimes of most nature rarely get tied up in one absolute pretty bow with a cherry on top.

            I came to this the same way Bruce described as above, but then the watch sealed it for me. I think anyone with an interest in psychology will also be intrigued by much of the human nuance in all of this, even the buffoonery of Michael Barrett is intriguing.

            So we fight on in the battlefields of minutiae where pedantry tries to outwit logic, reason and psychology.

            “The trumpets of war shall sound at his footsteps, the ravens feed at his voice, and he shall wear a crown of swords.”
            ― Robert Jordan, A Crown of Swords
            Thank you erobitha. Your words just buoyed me up tremendously.

            I think I may have been rather unkind to refer to Mike Barrett as Bongo. He was clearly manipulated by Alan Gray, on Melvin Harris's watch, at possibly the most vulnerable point in his personal life since the diary took over control in 1992. The divorce he never wanted had just become an intensely painful reality, and he was being treated in hospital for a nasty injury to his hand, self-inflicted when he went round to his ex wife's new home, no doubt in a state of anger and distress. That was the scene when Gray pounced on Melvin's behalf:

            Monday 12th December 1994
            Extract from a conversation between Alan Gray and Mike Barrett, during visit by Gray to MB at Liverpool Royal Infirmary.
            AG: What he [Melvin Harris] was saying to me was as soon as Mike comes out, it's in the best interest of everyone to take a concise statement and all the newspapers will [take it] and at the end of it we go down together and swear it as an affidavit and that will be it nailed down, right. It will take a few hours.
            MB: I'll get nicked then.
            AG: No, you won't, because this statement will safeguard you is what Melvin tells me.
            MB: Yeah, yeah.
            AG: Just stay as you have been and let the others handle it. Let everyone get on with it and that's it. You know the saying, 'every dog has its day'...
            ...You know what, when we get to write this affidavit, we'll need a lot of detail you know. Then we'll sign it and swear it before a solicitor. That's what we'll do.

            We know that no newspaper printed the resulting affidavit, for a variety of reasons, some more obvious than others, so if Mike was given the impression that he would personally gain anything from this cruel trick played on him, it was a false one.

            When I learned about The Confessions of Thomas Quick, and how he was manipulated by all sorts of supposedly smart people, who didn't bother to check out the veracity of his tall tales and his motive for telling them, but cherry-picked the details of his 'confessions' which appeared to fit the crimes, while discarding or ignoring all those which either didn't fit or were later disproven - confirmation bias up to volume eleven - I couldn't help making a comparison, on a far smaller scale, with The Confessions of Mike Barrett.

            Thomas Quick was wrongly convicted of serial murder because he got better treatment for his serious mental health issues, and more attention from his therapists, by lying about the extent and nature of his violent sexual tendencies and offences. He conjured up the evidence from what he managed to ascertain about the individual crimes, and any gaps or errors were put down to blocking out memories of crimes he had supposedly committed because of painful childhood memories he had also blocked out. The worst of it is that nobody was out there looking for the real killers of the victims he had claimed for himself.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sture_Bergwall

            Love,

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


            Comment


            • Originally posted by Kattrup View Post

              I think you missed replying to this part of my post:



              It’s just that you’ve stated Melvin Harris suppressed the affidavit, I was wondering how you know that?
              I think I already answered this one? He 'suppressed' it by not mentioning it.

              It was clearly quite strategic on his part.

              Cheers,

              Ike
              Iconoclast

              Comment


              • Originally posted by MrBarnett View Post

                It’s only a mistake if the lady wasn’t ever referred to as Florrie’s aunt within the family.
                And do you have any evidence that she was? Or is it just another case of "she could have been"--the same default logic used by Ike and other Diary believers?

                The only evidence I have seen presented is Dr. Hopper's supplemental witness statement, and it says nothing about her being referred to as Florrie's aunt. It states that James and Florrie were arguing about Florrie's godmother...and lo and behold, The Countess was that very thing. Since Hopper heard it, and correctly identified the Countess's actual relationship to Florrie, I think we can safely assume that that is what she was called.

                "it could have been" has always been the last refuge of the Diary believer. Maybrick "could have been" suffering from multi-personality disorder, thus had different styles of handwriting. Mary Kelly "could have" found her missing key the night she was murdered, and so the diary isn't REALLY repeating an error that has crept into the literature. Maybrick "could have" been in such throws of mania that he forgot what body parts he left on the bedside table. There "could have been" a Mrs. Hamersmith living up the road from the Maybricks, but she somehow stayed off the radar. The ledger "could have" been miraculously preserved in a biscuit tin, thus making the ink stay damp for 100 years. Mike Barrett "could have been" curious about what 20 blank sheets of paper looked like, not realizing that one blank sheet of paper looks pretty much like the next blank sheet of paper.

                Perpetual suspended disbelief by the power of "it could have been." And the greatest part is that no one needs to have any actual evidence for any of this.

                I think the last thing the Diary believers need is someone giving them false hope by breaking a butterfly on a wheel.

                They are more in need of smelling salts.

                Comment



                • Originally posted by Iconoclast View Post

                  Melvin Harris didn't publicise the affidavit because he knew it was full of holes.

                  If he didn't publicise it, and Alan Gray and Mike Barrett lacked the will or the ability to do so also, then that is how it was 'suppressed'. Talk about damned by faint praise. This was damned by an all-too convenient silence.

                  If it had amounted to more, you can rest assured it would have been trumpeted from every rooftop Melvin could find.

                  Ike
                  Hi Ike,

                  I'm not sure of the legalities here, but would Mike's solicitor have been able to prevent it being scrutinised and investigated - by the police for example - if Mike had insisted on the world knowing how he did it? This also assumes Mike's solicitor at the time was actually informed about it. Who would have told him? Mike signed this particular affidavit in the presence of a different solicitor, which seems a tad convenient to me. Had Bark-Jones been there, I have little doubt he would have had a stern word with his client, urging him not to go down the same road as he did the previous June, due to his faculties being even more impaired than they were on that occasion.

                  I wonder what Melvin Harris meant when he told Alan Gray in December 1994 that 'this' statement would 'safeguard' Mike from getting nicked for forgery. It hadn't been put together yet, and the plan was to offer it to all the newspapers! Was it loaded with impossible dates so that nothing could be proved if the police investigated it?

                  In any case, the whole episode stinks to high heaven. Must have been the Scotch.

                  Love,

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


                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by MrBarnett View Post

                    Thanks, Yabs. :-)

                    Talk about Aunties in the wainscot!

                    What all this nonsense revolves around is whether it is remotely conceivable that Florrie’s godmother, her mother’s friend, could have been referred to as her aunt.

                    My Collins Dictionary gives this as one definition of aunt:

                    ’A term of address used by children for any woman, esp for a friend of their parents.’

                    Orsam implicitly claims that it isn’t remotely conceivable.
                    And I have first-hand experience of having been Godmother to my friends' daughter Caroline, who was named after me and knew me as Auntie Caroline. She and my own daughter were friends as they are of similar age.

                    From the old nag's mouth no less.

                    Love,

                    Godmama Caz
                    X
                    Last edited by caz; 08-05-2020, 01:55 PM.
                    "Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious." Peter Ustinov


                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by rjpalmer View Post

                      And do you have any evidence that she was? Or is it just another case of "she could have been"--the same default logic used by Ike and other Diary believers?

                      The only evidence I have seen presented is Dr. Hopper's supplemental witness statement, and it says nothing about her being referred to as Florrie's aunt. It states that James and Florrie were arguing about Florrie's godmother...and lo and behold, The Countess was that very thing. Since Hopper heard it, and correctly identified the Countess's actual relationship to Florrie, I think we can safely assume that that is what she was called.

                      "it could have been" has always been the last refuge of the Diary believer. Maybrick "could have been" suffering from multi-personality disorder, thus had different styles of handwriting. Mary Kelly "could have" found her missing key the night she was murdered, and so the diary isn't REALLY repeating an error that has crept into the literature. Maybrick "could have" been in such throws of mania that he forgot what body parts he left on the bedside table. There "could have been" a Mrs. Hamersmith living up the road from the Maybricks, but she somehow stayed off the radar. The ledger "could have" been miraculously preserved in a biscuit tin, thus making the ink stay damp for 100 years. Mike Barrett "could have been" curious about what 20 blank sheets of paper looked like, not realizing that one blank sheet of paper looks pretty much like the next blank sheet of paper.

                      Perpetual suspended disbelief by the power of "it could have been." And the greatest part is that no one needs to have any actual evidence for any of this.

                      I think the last thing the Diary believers need is someone giving them false hope by breaking a butterfly on a wheel.

                      They are more in need of smelling salts.
                      I am not challenging the authenticity of the diary, I’m challenging Lord O’s logic that the use of the term ‘aunt’ in the diary was unquestionably an error based on an error made by Addison.

                      Florrie’s godmother may well have been referred to as ‘aunt’ within the family and Addison may well have picked up on that from somewhere other than Hopper’s written statement. Equally, the lady may never have been thus called and Addison may well have plucked the term ‘aunt’ from his bum. Equally, in my opinion. Both seem entirely plausible. I’m not the one insisting on the truth of something that I cannot know.

                      If anyone believes it’s impossible, or so unlikely as to be unworthy of consideration, for the term aunt to have been in use in the Maybrick household, perhaps they can explain why.





                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by rjpalmer View Post

                        And do you have any evidence that she was? Or is it just another case of "she could have been"--the same default logic used by Ike and other Diary believers?

                        The only evidence I have seen presented is Dr. Hopper's supplemental witness statement, and it says nothing about her being referred to as Florrie's aunt. It states that James and Florrie were arguing about Florrie's godmother...and lo and behold, The Countess was that very thing. Since Hopper heard it, and correctly identified the Countess's actual relationship to Florrie, I think we can safely assume that that is what she was called.

                        "it could have been" has always been the last refuge of the Diary believer. Maybrick "could have been" suffering from multi-personality disorder, thus had different styles of handwriting. Mary Kelly "could have" found her missing key the night she was murdered, and so the diary isn't REALLY repeating an error that has crept into the literature. Maybrick "could have" been in such throws of mania that he forgot what body parts he left on the bedside table. There "could have been" a Mrs. Hamersmith living up the road from the Maybricks, but she somehow stayed off the radar. The ledger "could have" been miraculously preserved in a biscuit tin, thus making the ink stay damp for 100 years. Mike Barrett "could have been" curious about what 20 blank sheets of paper looked like, not realizing that one blank sheet of paper looks pretty much like the next blank sheet of paper.

                        Perpetual suspended disbelief by the power of "it could have been." And the greatest part is that no one needs to have any actual evidence for any of this.

                        I think the last thing the Diary believers need is someone giving them false hope by breaking a butterfly on a wheel.

                        They are more in need of smelling salts.
                        and after they wake up, a hammer to knock some sense into them. although concerning the diary defenders, the hammer would probably be the one to break. its pointless RJ, as you say theres always some ridiculous response-it could have been this, it could have been that, it could have been a flying pig because its not physically or semantically impossible for a pig to fly-it could be on an airplane, it could have lept very high and very far, it could be strapped to a hanglider. its really as silly as that.

                        Lord Orsam's Bull Shit Terminator Enrages Ripperologists
                        "Is all that we see or seem
                        but a dream within a dream?"

                        -Edgar Allan Poe


                        "...the man and the peaked cap he is said to have worn
                        quite tallies with the descriptions I got of him."

                        -Frederick G. Abberline

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by caz View Post

                          And I have first-hand experience of having been Godmother to my friends' daughter Caroline, who was named after me and knew me as Auntie Caroline. She and my own daughter were friends as they are of similar age.

                          From the old nag's mouth no less.

                          Love,

                          Godmama Caz
                          X
                          I had a few ‘faux’ aunties myself. Family friends, neighbours, women who ran local shops ...

                          To call someone who was not one of your parents’ siblings an aunt was not an error, it was common usage in the past.

                          Nowadays, kids generally call adults by their forenames. But 50/60 years ago that was thought of as somewhat disrespectful. You generally applied a prefix of some kind, Mr/Mrs/Aunt/Uncle.

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by Kattrup View Post

                            I think you missed replying to this part of my post:
                            And I think you missed my subtle hint about drawing a line under your unfortunate question.

                            I'm now drawing a line under this line of questioning, coming from someone who only recently claimed they had no interest in the subject matter or learning more about it. I'm happy to leave others to judge how trustworthy that claim was, in light of your continued terrier-like persistence over this one issue.

                            I expect you'll find Inside Story positively riddled with schoolgirl errors if you spend the next 17 years going over it page by page with a fine-toothed comb, instead of concentrating on whether Mike's affidavit was reliable or riddled with rotten lies from start to finish.

                            I guess it's all a question of personal priorities: trying to find where the truth lies, or finding fault with those of us who doubt Mike Barrett's ability to lie straight in bed.

                            Love,

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


                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by Abby Normal View Post

                              and after they wake up, a hammer to knock some sense into them. although concerning the diary defenders, the hammer would probably be the one to break. its pointless RJ, as you say theres always some ridiculous response-it could have been this, it could have been that, it could have been a flying pig because its not physically or semantically impossible for a pig to fly-it could be on an airplane, it could have lept very high and very far, it could be strapped to a hanglider. its really as silly as that.

                              Lord Orsam's Bull Shit Terminator Enrages Ripperologists
                              Abby,

                              Do you or Lord Orsam know for a fact that the godmother was never referred to as Florrie’s aunt? And do you know who Addison may have discussed the case with in preparation for the trial?

                              If not, then you are guilty of something far worse than ‘it coulda been’. You are assuming something for which you have no evidence is an established fact because it suits your theory.

                              Do you really believe that calling a female family friend ‘aunt’ is as unlikely as a flying pig? It really isn’t. Look in your dictionary. Look at the anecdotal evidence provided by your boardmates.

                              I would be wary of going out too far on this particular limb, if I were you. Lord O has a habit of lopping off his errors of judgement by claiming they were tongue in cheek or some other excuse.

                              Gary

                              Comment


                              • Gary - you do realize that this line of argument is anecdotal evidence of the worst kind? Knowing a childhood chum who called the kindly lady up the street "Aunt Lucy" tells us absolutely zero about what Florence Maybrick called her godmother. The only historical evidence that anyone has presented is Dr. Fuller recalling Florrie referring to the Countess as her godmother.

                                It reminds me of 'Mr Poster' recalling how he once found a dead cat under the floorboards of an old house in Europe, as if this was somehow suitable evidence of an electrician finding a black ledger under the floorboards at Battlecrease.

                                "Well, it could have happened, it's not impossible..."

                                Even if I was to accept the 'general usage' argument (I don't), Florence Chandler Maybrick was an American. Wouldn't American usage be more relevant than the OED? But even if this was standard practice in the American South, it still wouldn't tell me what I want to know.

                                By contrast, there is every appearance that Addison confused Fuller's statement about a godmother with an earlier visit to London that involved another woman who was actually someone's aunt.

                                It is an error...much like 'with the key I did flee'...and I find it interesting that these errors are repeated in the books Mike mentions in his confessional statements.

                                Yours truly,

                                A Bongo Believer

                                P.S. A friend kindly reminded me last night (much like Abby--thanks!) to stop wasting so much time on the Maybrick hoax, particularly when there are far more pressing--and interesting--'Ripperological' matters at hand. So I'll be blocking this website for the foreseeable future, but I'll check back in three or four weeks. Ciao.
                                Last edited by rjpalmer; 08-05-2020, 03:14 PM.

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