Bruce Robinson’s book They All Love Jack is a vitriolic attack on the nineteenth centry establishment. Reading this, I saw parallels with the modern corporate world. Robinson describes a vast conspiracy and cover up directed by freemasons at the heart of government to protect Jack the Ripper, frame an innocent woman with the connivance of her defence lawyer and jail a journalist who complained about rich criminals walking free. Let’s compare this with a, naturally, fictitious company.
Instead of Queen Victoria read a CEO oblivious to the welfare of staff but keen to acquire perks for his family. Instead of politicians gripped in a masonic conspiracy substitute a network of managers promoted above their abilities and sustained by a collaborative culture of nepotism. For the defence lawyer, Sir Charles Russell, imagine a team leader obliged to put the interests of the managers above those of his staff. And for the journalist, poor Ernest Parkes, think about honest employees penalised for daring to challenge injustice in the workplace.
On the basis of known evidence I can’t support Robinson’s contention that Michael Maybrick was Jack the Ripper but as companies present their half-yearly results, I’m sure they won’t let facts get in the way of a good story.
Paul Williams is a writer best known for his study of the Jack the Ripper suspects