Orsam Books

The Bitha's Blog

Like a mini evil Lord Orsam, the Bitha has his own blog,  which is like a shrine for the True Believer.

The amount of nonsense spewed in its pages is remarkable.  I've commented on some of this in the Bitha Special but it's worth looking more closely at a number of other aspects.

DAMN DIARY DEFENDERS!

Let's start with his article entitled 'Damn Diary Defenders!' here in which he wails about being described as 'a diary defender'.  I've already explained in the The Error Bitha Special why he is a classic diary defender, and it's in this article that he makes the outrageously false claim that examples of 'one off' have been found in nineteenth century newspaper articles, thus outing himself as a diary defender who hasn't got a clue.

Needless to say, he doesn't provide a single example of  of 'one off' in a single nineteenth century newspaper, which is kind of amazing considering it's the holy grail of every diary defender to locate just one!

It's also hilarious to find the Bitha telling us in that same article on his website that he's found an example of 'babbling buffoon' from the nineteenth century, of which he says it's 'hardly a great leap to use the word 'Bumbling' as an adjective' while completely ignoring, in true diary defender style, the fact that the very issue is with the word 'bumbling' which wasn't generally available in the English language for an expression of 'bumbling buffoon' to be written in 1888.

Utterly amazing that he can write an article denying that he is a diary defender while literally defending the diary!!!!

As for Mike Barrett, I love the fact that the Bitha tells us in this article:

'Knowing the case [Lord Orsam comment: LOL!], I have a mental picture of the man Mike was.'

Of course he does!  He means his overactive imagination, based on nothing, does.

Oh hold on, he tells us that much of his mental picture 'has been confirmed by people who have had direct dealings with him'.

I'd love to know who these people are.  Do they include anyone who had direct dealings with Mike prior to April 1992?  I very much doubt it!  There's a huge gap in the evidential record as to what Mike was like during this period.  The only people Mike is known to have had any 'dealings' with were people investigating the diary post April 1992, being the very people he was trying to fool about the diary's provenance.  So how can the Bitha have any kind of accurate picture of what Mike was like in, or before, March 1992?

Then we have the actual proof that the Bitha is a True Believer as he tells us:

'I believe both the watch and the scrapbook came out of Battlecrease House on the 9th March 1992'.

Yay, he believes, he believes!!!

Sadly, he adds that he cannot tell us how the watch and scrapbook got into Battlecrease House ('How they got there I do not know'), but if, as he claims, James Maybrick was 'absolutely' Jack the Ripper, the explanation is fucking obvious. 

Nor can he tell us why the jeweller who sold the watch to Albert Johnson stated that the watch had been in his family's possession for a number of years prior to 1992. For it to have ended up in Battlecrease in March 1992 while being in the jeweller's possession during the whole of March 1992 seems like an absolute fucking miracle.

The trouble is that the Bitha is so beguiled by the two hurriedly produced and heavily qualified expert reports about the watch that he has convinced himself that it cannot be a modern hoax even though the scratches on the watch cannot be scientifically dated.  All that has supposedly been dated are the particles found in the scratches but it must be obvious that old particles could have been deposited into modern scratches, either by accident or design, although the Bitha doesn't seem to even consider the possibility.

A SIGHT FOR SORE EYES 

Every single diary defender in my experience falsely claims that their opponents do not want to discuss the watch, even though it has been discussed ad nauseum and, sure enough on his website, the Bitha tells us in his article 'A Sight for Sore Eyes' (an article already discussed in The Error Bitha Special) that:

'The arguments against the authenticity of the watch are weaker than the scrapbook. The cynics don’t want you to consider that. Focus on the scrapbook is their strategy.' 

It goes without saying that there is no such strategy. On the contrary, diary defenders, like the Bitha, never seem to want to discuss the fact that there was no episode of Antiques Roadshow on British TV prior to the scratches on the watch being discovered by Albert Johnson, even though it was supposed to have been a discussion about this programme with work colleagues which led directly to their discovery.

It's such a ridiculous trope that those who consider the diary to be a modern hoax do not want to discuss the watch.   The irony is that I've never seen any kind of educated response from any diary defender to what Melvin Harris said about the watch, which can be found in Harris on the Watch.

The real problem, however, is that the evidence surrounding the watch is so ludicrously thin that there is very little to discuss. No detailed account has ever been produced as to how the scratches were discovered by Albert Johnson. The witnesses to the discovery have never been identified.  No corroborating statements have been produced as to why Albert Johnson brought the watch into his workplace.  The receipt for the purchase of the watch has never been produced.  In fact, I've never seen any documentation regarding its purchase.  The two expert reports are both heavily caveated and were completed in a hurry.  The photographic exhibits to the reports which have been published are of such low quality that they are useless to man or beast.

But let's return to the main subject of the article 'A Sight for Sore Eyes' because the Bitha pulls a conjuring trick worthy of the late Paul Daniels.

He tells us that James Maybrick - a man who was examined by a number of doctors during 1888 and 1889 - was in the tertiary stage of neurosyphilis.  Strange that none of the doctors detected it but the Bitha tells us that Maybrick 'most likely' had symptoms such as 'skin blotches, nervous system issues, bouts of mania and a side effect disease called bilateral madarosis'.   When he says that Maybrick most likely had these symptoms, he seems to mean that he most likely had them if he was in the tertiary state of neurosyphilis, not that there is actual evidence of Maybrick having had those symptoms.

Anyway, the Bitha says that bilateral madarosis is 'of extreme interest' to him.  Why?  Because bilateral madarosis is a condition which results in the loss of eyelashes and sometimes eyebrows.  Why is that of extreme interest to the Bitha?  Is James Maybrick known to have suffered from the loss of eyelashes or eyebrows?

No, he isn't.  But a man reportedly seen with Elizabeth Stride two hours before her murder was said to have lost his eyelashes.  So the Bitha might have discovered that this man (who may or may not have murdered Elizabeth Stride) was in the tertiary stage of neurosyphilis.  What is the connection between that man and James Maybrick?

Er...

The Bitha doesn't tell us, and one can't help but think that, considering the number of doctors who examined James Maybrick towards the end of his life, and after his death during the post-mortem, surely one of them would have noticed and remarked on the loss of eyelashes.

I mean, sure, Maybrick told his friend Witt that his eyes were watering and giving him trouble at some point during late 1888 but what does that have to do with bilateral madarosis?   

The Bitha doesn't explain it.

All we have is some kind of circular argument that Maybrick was the Ripper, the Ripper suffered from bilateral madarosis, therefore Maybrick suffered from bilateral madarosis, therefore Maybrick was the Ripper.  Unless the Bitha can produce any evidence that Maybrick had a problem with his eyelashes, the article with his amazing 'discovery' is a complete waste of time.

THE WRITING ON THE WALL

In his article 'The Writing on the Wall' here the Bitha makes the same mistake as the Major in claiming that, if the diary is a modern hoax, 'then the hoaxer must have known about Wood's discovery'.  This is entirely false. As I've demonstrated, Wood's discovery related to the idea that Mary Jane Kelly had been attempting to write the name of Joe Barnett on the wall.  It had nothing to do with the purported initials of 'FM' and was probably in respect of supposed writing elsewhere on the wall. 

The Bitha says that 'Between 1989 to 1992 (the diary’s discovery), only a tiny band of people would have known about Wood’s initial thoughts. So how did the diarist get to know of this?'. But the diarist didn't get to know about Wood's thoughts.  Wood's thoughts were completely different.  The only reason that Martin Fido linked what he thought might be the initials 'FM' on the wall to Simon Wood was out of an abundance of fairness to give Wood credit for being the first person to potentially have spotted the initials on the wall.  But it was really a false credit because Wood didn't claim to see 'FM' or anything like it.  It was only after having read the diary some years later that Wood's speculative suggestion triggered a memory in Martin Fido's mind that there might be initials on the wall so that he examined the photograph in detail and then saw what he initially believed to be 'EM'.

So the Bitha is quite wrong to say that the diarist 'came to the same conclusion as Simon Wood' and that 'Chances  of this happening around the same time as he made the same discovery are very slim'.  The diarist did not come to the same conclusion as Simon Wood.  The diarist never even said that there are any initials on the wall!!!

As to that, the Bitha himself isn't even convinced that the diarist was referring to the supposed initials 'FM' on the wall because he claims that there is also an 'F' carved into the left arm of Mary Kelly.  So what was the diarist referring to with his initial here and initial there?  The 'FM' on the wall or the 'F' on Kelly's arm?

The Bitha concludes that if there is an F on Kelly's arm, 'That would clearly make 'Jack the Ripper none other than James Maybrick'.  Er....or the sharp-eyed diarist spotted the supposed 'F' carved on Kelly's arm in the published photograph and incorporated it into his fake narrative.

The Bitha also sees a tattoo of a heart on Kelly's body and writes: 'What’s more, the Maybrick diarist also mentioned a heart. He also claims he did not take anything away with him this time, so why the fascination with a heart?'  The Bitha doesn't consider the fact that a number of books on the Ripper case (e.g. Odell, Fido, Underwood) mention that the killer cut out Kelly's heart (and placed it on the table).  So when, at some supposed point in 1889, while reflecting on the Kelly murder from months earlier, the diarist wrote 'no heart, no heart' (which doesn't in any way reflect a 'fascination' with a heart) that is simple the explanation for that.  The fact that the diarist claimed not to have taken anything away with him this time is simply a mistake because we know from Dr Bond's report that the heart was absent (and there were contemporary corroborating reports that the heart was taken away by the killer).

ETCHED IN CHALK

The Bitha's 'Etched in Chalk' article is here

The only interesting thing about the Bitha's article on this subject is that he doesn't claim to see any names hidden in the writing, like the Major does.  Sorry the mad Major!

Other than the killer wanting to seem uneducated by mis-spelling the word 'Jews', the Bitha doesn't provide any reason why the writing should be connected to James Maybrick as opposed to any other person.

Perhaps the most interesting aspect of the Bitha's article is that he reproduces DC Halse's version of the writing of the wall which, he tells us, is an 'Actual transcription from DC Halse's notebook'.

What does the Bitha mean by an 'Actual transcription from DC Halse's notebook'?  Is it a modern transcription based on Halse's inquest evidence?  Or is he saying that it is an actual copy taken directly from Halse's notebook?

Finally, we can note that the Error Bitha is up to his old tricks in saying:

'Before the ‘double event’, the police had arrested John Pizer, a Jew with the nickname ‘Leather Apron’ based on a leather apron found at the crime scene of Annie Chapman’s murder.'

The nickname of 'Leather Apron' was not, of course, based on a leather apron found at the scene of Annie Chapman's murder. That was a pure coincidence.  It's another schoolboy error from the Bitha.

WHO WAS JAMES MAYBRICK?

Let me remind you that in his 'Damned Diary Defenders!' article, the Bitha said in respect of the diary:

'So do I truly believe that James Maybrick wrote this document? Not 100%'

That was when he was pretending not to be a diary defender.

But what do we find in his article 'Who was James Maybrick?' here?  This: 

‘Sir Jim, as he enjoyed calling himself, was a complicated character...'

There is literally zero evidence other than the diary that James Maybrick enjoyed calling himself 'Sir Jim'.

In other words, while denying that he 100% believes the diary to be genuine, when writing about James Maybrick, he relies 100% on the diary for his source material.

It's diary defending at its finest!

He tells us that Maybrick was 'Consumed with jealousy, rage and bitterness', something which seems to come more from the diary than from the known information about the man's life. 

And this is the article in which the Bitha writes of his opponents:

'They cite several challenges with the book, such as its provenance, the ink used, handwriting style, and alleged historical inaccuracies. The funny thing is, none of those things has been conclusively proven either way. That means tantalisingly; the scrapbook could well be genuine.' 

As I've commented before, the historical inaccuracies including the anachronisms HAVE been conclusively proven meaning that the diary cannot possibly be genuine. 

While I appreciate that this nonsense is all puff for his book of fiction, it's time for the Bitha to wake up and smell the coffee.

LORD ORSAM
14 May 2022