THE RAVING LUNACY
On the last Orsam Day, the Major made another one of his trademark posts about the diary which was nothing more than yet another compilation of daft points made by others which he's picked up over the years - mainly Feldman but also other random nutters - and which seem to attract and beguile him.
The points were so bad that even an ardent diary defender, Steven Owl, described one of them as 'raving lunacy', although that didn't seem to trouble the mad Major one bit.
I did comment briefly about this post on Orsam Day but it really does bear closer examination, as do the responses to it by other sheepish diary defenders, because it is all so delightfully mad.
What the Major's post did reveal is that he obviously hasn't bothered to read my response to his 'Society's Pillar'. It will be recalled that, when he published his daft document on 16 March 2019, he expressly asked for a rebuttal from me, saying that he wanted to incorporate my response into his own document.
Well I responded in great detail in Pillar of Sand on 28 July 2019 and he's never responded to that at all but it's very troubling to discover that he can't possibly even have read it. Had he done so, he would have known that some of the points he is still making in support of the diary have been thoroughly debunked.
Here are the top ten raving lunacy points from the Major's post.
RAVING LUNACY 1
If we take the point which even other diary defenders think is raving lunacy - the Major's claim that a load of the names of Maybrick's relatives can be found in the Goulston Street Graffiti - we find the Major defending it in #8488 when he says:
'Why is the so-called 'B' in 'Blamed' misshapen? It's almost as though it needed to be that way'.
But the 'B' in 'Blamed' is NOT misshapen! As I demonstrated in Pillar of Sand, it's just the way that Sir Charles Warren wrote the letter 'B'.
The Major seems to think the transcript of the graffiti by Sir Charles was an exact copy, almost like a photograph. But when you realize that this is not the case, and the 'B' was the way Sir Charles wrote his letter 'B' - as I demonstrated visually - it becomes obvious that the letter 'B' cannot possibly be incorporating Florence's initials, as the Major, in his raving lunacy, seems to believe.
And you don't get the name 'Edwin' out of 'blamed for nothing' as the Major claims. It's just not there.
But seeing names or initials in the graffiti which aren't there isn't the only element of raving lunacy in the Major's posts.
RAVING LUNACY 2
Incredibly the Major still seems to see significance in the fact that the first two letters of James' first name and the last two make 'Jack' as in:
What possible significance can there be in this random selection?
After all, why hasn't he taken the first two letters of the first name and the first two letters of the last name to make 'Jama'?
What's so special about the first two letters of a name and the last two of a surname?
The answer is nothing.
From someone called Simon Maybrick you would get 'Sick', from someone called Diana Maybrick you would get 'Dick', while from a Colin Maybrick you would get 'Cock', but would that have any meaning?
From Michael Maybrick you get 'Mick' but so what? Did the diary author call his brother 'Mick' for a laugh? No, he did not. Yet we are supposed to think that he called himself 'Jack' due to the first two letters of his first name and the last two of his surname without once mentioning it in the diary.
For Thomas Maybrick, if you take the first two of the first name and last three of the surname you get 'Thick'. But so what?
As I pointed out in Society's Pillar, with Richard Hopper you can find 'Ripper' in there if you want.
All the Major has done is set his own rules as to which letters to choose in order to come up with something he likes. It is pretty much the very definition of madness.
RAVING LUNACY 3
In his post (#8462), the Major told us:
'James Maybrick’s visage was published for all to see in the Telegraph on Oct 6, 1888. You just couldn’t make it up, could you?'
This is another fully debunked claim.
The only thing you can't make up is that the Major keeps repeating it.
As I've already demonstrated in Pillar of Sand, the TWO artist sketches published in the Daily Telegraph on 6 October 1888, neither of which, in fact, contained James Maybrick's visage, were created by an artist from published descriptions of the murderer by various witnesses (albeit that it isn't even known if those witnesses saw the murderer). In other words, the artist had no more information available to him regarding the murderer's face than would be known today, in 2022, if a modern sketch artist attempted to create a portrait of the killer. The only real similarity between one of the Telegraph sketches and Maybrick is that in one of them (the one said to have been the least accurate) the killer is portrayed with a moustache. That's basically it.
RAVING LUNACY 4
The question asked here is the question of a madman.
'On October 10 1888, James Maybrick wrote a postcard to the Liverpool Echo in which he was adamant that ‘Jack the Ripper’ had not committed some given crime in Dublin. How on earth did the writer know this if he or she were not Jack the Ripper himself?'
In the first place, the writer of the 10 October 1888 postcard was NOT responding to anything to do with any crimes in Dublin. In the 9 October 1888 edition of the Liverpool Echo, there was mention of the Dublin authorities having received a letter from the Ripper saying he was going to be in Dublin that week. It didn't mention any crimes having been committed in Dublin. But this can't have been the letter being referred to in the postcard because the postcard was said by the Liverpool Echo of 10 October 1888 to have been 'addressed to the Liverpool Echo office yesterday' (i.e. 9 October 1888) and it referred to 'letters' published in the Echo 'yesterday' (i.e. 8 October 1888).
In the second place, in the highly unlikely event of the real Jack the Ripper having written to the Liverpool Echo prior to the 10 October postcard claiming to have committed a crime in Dublin or somewhere else, why would the writer of the 10 October postcard have cared whether the real Ripper had, in fact, committed a crime in Dublin or anywhere else, or had actually written to the newspaper? The postcard was a complete lie, written anonymously, so it simply didn't matter. It certainly wasn't uncommon for writers of fake 'Jack the Ripper' letters to deny that the other letters received by the press and police were genuine but none of them could possibly have known whether that was the case or not.
The Major continues with this non sequitur:
'The postcard was signed ‘Diego Laurenz (Genuine)’. James Maybrick was putting down his mark again, hiding in plain sight.'
How was James Maybrick putting down his mark by signing the postcard 'Diego Laurenz'? The Major doesn't explain it in his post and we know that there is no connection.
RAVING LUNACY 5
It was particularly surprising that Stephen Owl didn't describe the next paragraph of the Major's post as raving lunacy, although I suspect that, like the rest of us, he didn't have a fucking clue what the Major was talking about:
'So many Jack the Ripper letters flooded the Metropolitan Police after they published the September 25 version of the ‘Dear Boss’ saga (the second, as it happens, in the series). Many of them contained absolutely meaningless statements such as ‘I am in Poplar today’, ‘my hand in practice’, ‘delightful mourning’, ‘once tackled goodnight’ and other obscure lines. None of this made any sense until SC Davies came along and showed us that these were derived from a simple Maybrick matrix. Hiding in plain sight.'
This is a reference to a book by one S.C. Davies called 'Time Reveals All: The Funny Little Games of Jack the Ripper' not mentioned in the Major's Society's Pillar and thus not debunked by me but, from a single example provided by the Major in #7184 of the Incontrovertible thread, in which the expression 'I am 35' is supposed to be 'James', you can already see how crazy it is.
RAVING LUNACY 6
'James Maybrick sent at least a couple of rhymes to the Central News, and one of these contained the line ‘as time will show’ and another ‘I’m society’s pillar’. Astonishing. Maybrick placed his family motto – more or less literally – into this rhyme and then in the very next line revealed that his name had something to do with pillars. Impossible to have deciphered at the time, of course, as Maybrick was never a suspect, but easy to understand now in the light of Maybrick’s confession in his scrapbook. Hiding in plain sight.'
Unfortunately for the Major, there never was a letter sent to the Central News, or anywhere else, containing the lines 'as time will show' and 'I'm society's pillar'. This rhyme was a modern invention of Donald McCormick.
Entirely appropriate that the Major is fooled by yet another fake.
RAVING LUNACY 7
'James Maybrick sent a letter to the authorities on September 29, 1888, and he signed it ‘Jack the Ripper’. The letter came from Liverpool and it was received before the infamous nom de plume was known. He didn’t add the year, sadly, but it’s not difficult to imagine which year he sent it.'
This is another non-existent letter that no one has ever seen (other than one journalist who must have been writing from memory more than 40 years later). The letter, as it was described by the journalist in 1927, was not dated 1888, nor was it even dated 'September'. There is literally no reason to think it was dated 29 September 1888 and it clearly was not. It's all an invention.
'Michael Maybrick gave brother James a valid reason to be in London and Gustavus Witt gave him a valid reason to be in or near Whitechapel. His relationship with Sarah Robertson many years earlier had even furnished him with a working knowledge of the locus of his ‘campaign’. No hoaxer could reasonably expect such remarkable largesse from a universe of random chances.'
'Yes, the scrapbook itself exists, it is hard evidence, and it has never – despite many mendacious or just plain ignorant claims to the contrary – been proven a hoax!'
'Although Ike and I may not agree on the cryptic origins of the GSG [LORD ORSAM COMMENT: 'may not agree' LOL!], I would not describe his belief as raving lunacy. After all, we have no proof to the contrary. He is entitled to that conclusion.'
'Well at least if it is raving lunacy, Ike, it's the kind that doesn't really hurt anyone.'
'Real raving lunacy in my book is insisting Trump won the election; believing the pandemic is a hoax; claiming that vaccination is at best ineffective and at worst killing more people than the virus; arguing that Brexit was a really good idea; denying the effects of climate change. I'm sure there's another one but I'm not putin my finger on it.'
'Letters on Kelly's [wall] were then raised around the end of 1992 by Martin Fido as part of his analysis of the case for Shirley Harrison, and more or less the same time by Paul Begg on behalf of Paul Feldman's research. These letters were the iconic 'F' and 'M'.'
'the hoaxer has to be the first person to ever notice those letters from which seed he or she backward engineers a story to F'lorence M'aybrick and thence to James Maybrick and then gets the kind of luck which wins lotteries in successive draws when Maybrick works on every level.'
'Countless posters testify that the letters 'F' and 'M' are clear on Kelly's wall'
Victor - 'Letters on Kelly's wall that may or may not be there' (#120).Sam Flynn - 'It's not even proof of an "F" and an "M" on the wall, Tom' (#124).Ben - 'Trouble is, the image you're looking at isn't just an M....The "F" is worse than useless because it wholly lacks a base, making it look more like a crude "c" if anything...you only get "M" and "F" if you mentally blot out anything that isn't M-ish or F-ish' (#140).Billy Bulger - 'Regarding the Florence Maybrick initials in Dorset Street, I have tried but cannot see them amidst the carnage left by the Ripper' (#154).John Omlor - '"Faith" is the operative word here. This is about faith. That is why there is no point in discussing things rationally with people like Tom. When you run into "faith" -- especially faith in things like imagined letters in a photograph -- all hope for any productive analysis vanishes' (#176).Sam Flynn (again) - 'It's one thing to see something similar to an "FM" shape on the wall - which I can - but it's quite another to say that it's a deliberately written pair of initials' (#225).Ben (again) - 'I don't accept for a moment that I'm seeing letters. I'm seeing a pattern, part of which includes something vaguely resembling an M-shape. If there was a squiggly, spiralling line from ceiling to floor, the chances are strong that part of it would have an S-shape, but it isn't an "S" in isolation. It's part of a larger pattern than includes something looking like an "S". The "F" I don't see at all' (#231).c.d. - 'I do see an F and an M but I think that is only because I was looking for it. I don't think that I would have seen it otherwise. I think to consider them initials is pushing it' (#241).Graham - 'THERE AIN'T NO "FM" ON THAT FRIGGIN' WALL' (#349).Christine - 'Sorry, but I can't see the letters. Most people on this site can't see the letters.' (#354).Chris - 'comparison with the better-quality reproduction shows that these letters simply are not there in the original.' (#356).Brenda - 'Who are all these people seeing initials on the wall? I've been on this site quite a few years now, and never met "lots" of people that see initials' (#475).babybird67 - 'i've never been able to see the letters either' (#476).The Good Michael - 'I'd say it looks like a 'w'. If it's a letter, then it could be a 'w'.' (#508).Victor (again) - 'a pair of initials that are vague and a matter of opinion' (#511).John Hacker - 'People see what they want to see. (Like "FM" for example)' (#565).Bridewell - 'If those letters exist - and I am yet to find them' (#964).Pcdunn - 'I see "H B" -- not "M F"... But maybe that's just me. Seriously, it's just visual matrixing...I suppose I can see a "M", but do not see the "F".' (#1423 & #1424).c.d. (again) - 'Well are they actually there? People see a human face on Mars but close up imagery reveals that it is just a rock formation. It is misleading to say that they are in fact initials. It would be much more accurate to say that they appear to be initials' (#1615).c.d. (again) - 'You are describing the phenomenon known as pareidolia' (#1623).John Wheat - 'The FM if it even exists' (#1634.)MsWeatherwax - 'I'm afraid that I can't see anything resembling the letters 'F' or 'M' anywhere in that picture' (#1655).GUT - 'Nor can I' (#1656).Geddy2112 - 'I don't see it and never have' (#1673).Abby Normal - 'yup. people only see what they want to see' (#1674).Harry D - 'Oh, the pareidolia from a grainy black and white photograph that shows the initials of Maybrick's wife' (#2111).
Simon Wood - 'Today you're doing exactly the same thing I did, pointing out the existence of something which isn't there' (#7261)
'It is interesting that - when the hoax debate moves away from Mike Barrett as master hoaxer - it suddenly goes crashingly quiet around here.'
'if ‘freshly picked carrots’ was never recorded until 1947, I’m not about to buy into the certainty of others that ‘bumbling buffoon’ and ‘spread mayhem’ (inter alia) could not have similarly been short-changed in the written history.'