Yes, Tom you are because the rest of us exercise logic and logic tells us that it ain't the Diary of James Maybrick let alone Jack the ripper.
I was going to reply to this thread stating what a completely fallacious request this was the demanding "one unequivocal, undeniable fact" garbage which is really just ludicrously feeble. There is never "one unequivocal, undeniable fact" in any case whatsoever, but it is a preponderance of evidence which establishes the truth of something, but I saw Alan had already replied and much better than I could have.
Let all Oz be agreed;
I'm Wicked through and through.
I am one of the old timers of 'Ripper' intrest, and although I gave the Diary', every consideration, I for the life of me, can't except its the genuine article.
to suggest the victim of a famous murder , was the East End killer, is ludricous, and is aimed at the very novice viewer.
Why the whole fantasy continues on Casebook, is mindblowing.
Proberly none of us has unravelled the mystery, but lets start at the common sense angle..
I don't know if this will encourage you, Tom, but I guess I'm a diary agnostic. When it first came out, I was very impressed with it and thought we had, at last, fingered JtR. Over the years, the difficulties with the diary that you and others have pointed out began to sway me, and I became less convinced of its authenticity. However, what continues to niggle at me is that, as you say, the thing has been around for a decade-and-a-half. If the diary is so obviously a fraud, why has no one been able to blow it out of the water?
And I disagree with the jury analogy. If this were a civil matter, and I were on the jury, I'd have no problem stating that, on a balance of probabilities, the diary is a fake. But, if we used the criminal standard for juries, I would have a hard time agreeing that it has been proven to be a hoax beyond a reasonable doubt.
I get the impression that Tom Mitchell has long salt-and-pepper hair, a hooked nose, is at least 6' 6" tall, wears long black coats, drives a vintage Jaguar, strides into parties like he owns the house, has a booming voice, has friends in high places, reads The New Statesman, goes to international rugby matches, holidays in Antigua, drinks vintage claret, points his finger as he talks to you, and...is utterly wrong.
But there you go. Just my totally unbiased opinion, for what it's worth.
You have me at an obvious disadvantage, Graham - we have evidently met, you know me so well!
The hair's more silver now.
Only my quirky sense of humour, Tom.
As it happens, I really appreciated your initial post. Personally, I don't consider the Diary to be genuine, but at the same time I wouldn't be prepared to write it off with the alacrity certain other distinguished posters have. In the back of my mind lurks the possibility that it could well be an old fake, written for a specific purpose. However, there really are many, many faults within the text that seriously suggest a modern fake.
And as I've just posted on another thread, without the Diary there is absolutely no evidence whatsoever to link James Maybrick with the Whitechapel Murders.
Still, I for one am not quite prepared to write it off...not yet, at any rate.
And it's strange that there's been nothing recently from our friends Down Under regarding the Diary....
Yes, for all my posturing, I yearn for a definite Yes or a definite No, as the not-knowing-for-certain drives me 'round the bend.
Gut instinct says it must be a fake, and the handwriting, and the melodramatic tone, and the breasts in the wrong place, and the claiming authorship of the 'Dear Boss' letter, all seem inconsistent with how it should be if it were real.
Had it come to light in the early 1980s (preferably pre-Hitler Diaries) it may have gained more credance - but even the year it actually did come to light adds to the aura of fraud: it came out when all of the 'new' data had been published for the first time in a century. Had it come to light pre-tin match box, or pre-Kelly's heart, it would have received more serious attention.
The only possibility left, I guess, is to hope that one more piece of unpublished information emerges, where it could not possibly be itself a fraud, and it verifies something in the diary.
I'm not holding my breath, but I am holding on to my own gut instinct - contrary to so many - that the diary really is for real.
I don't think the Diary is 'for real', face value and all that, but I do think that there is a slight possibility that it is not as 'unreal' as many people make it out to be. The overwhelming problem is that far too many people are involved in it, or have made themselves involved in it.
As a keeper of diaries since the age of 8, I feel qualified to label myself an expert on the following opinion:
The thing that convinces me the diary isn't real is that WERE it real, we would have page after page after page of boring stuff and lame introspections. a fictional example:
I feel so bad about things today. Ol' Florrie is a good girl at heart. We got along well today, she even baked my favorite cake, and sometimes I can't believe the crazy things I am thinking about her. What is wrong with me? If she's unhappy, its probably because I've been so mean at times, so careless about her feelings, so unattentive. I have got to try to redeem myself and this marriage. I must put the craziness away and go forward as the respectable man I've always been before, with my wife by my side. Starting today, I am going to take steps to become a better husband, and a better man overall. Today I will tell her how much she means to me, and perhaps take her out and buy her a trinket of my affections.
If the insane thoughts continue, I am going to seek out the advice of Reverend Do-Good and reveal as much as I dare, and perhaps he will know of a fine physician who can help me come to terms with my thoughts.
Today is the day that this situation will be reversed for the better. Truly it is not my fate to continue on this way. The things I have already done will be buried forever in the vault of my heart, and I will continue as a healed man.
And this kind of writing would go on for pages and pages until we were so tired of reading it that we were about to fall to sleep. But we don't get that. We get a carefully laid-out story that starts at the beginning and escalates to the end, just as a novel would.