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Camino LS6

The worst journalistic effort I have ever read

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From the San Francisco Journal's website sfgate.com

The last muscle car

Sexy as a swollen porn star on meth, twice as useless

By Mark Morford, SF Gate Columnist

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Have you seen this thing? This sexy macho bloated Hot Wheels fantasia dreamgasm of a car-like drunken child's funbot crayon sketch?

No? Because it appears to be a vehicle that at least some across the Big Autosphere are still secretly praying, despite the sudden overthrow of -- despite the deadly ultimatum for -- General Motors, might yet prove to be a savior.

Indeed, it's a car some hope will maybe, just maybe sell like crazy and restore a tiny bit of faith in big, thick, meaty, rather inane American cars that have no real place in the new millennium, but which for some reason they keep building anyway, presumably because aging frat boys you should never, ever date think they're totally wickedcool and will therefore be willing to shell out 35 grand to own, unless they won't.

Am I talking about the ugly-as-a-giant-vacuum-cleaner Chevy Volt? Am I aiming this admittedly overheated verbiage at the ruddy, useless Impala? No, I am not.

I am talking about the brand new, leering, pseudo-masculine 2010 Chevrolet Camaro.

What's that you say? You had no idea that Chevy was resurrecting this rolling mullet from the mausoleum of the '70s because, even after sucking up billions in bailout money, GM still doesn't really have a single fresh and forward-thinking idea, and hence the best they can do is scrape the barrel of macho nostalgia in a desperate attempt to cater to male Boomers who drink too much light beer and think Maxim is the height of masculinity and are still debating which Van Halen vocalist totally ruled?

Well, they did. And it's here. And they don't. And it's David Lee Roth (of course). And it's worth noting because, well, this wild new Camaro will very likely be the last you will ever hear of U.S. automakers vying to be a kickass, world-dominating force in automotive inspiration. It is most certainly the last gasp of that overblown, yet much-beloved myth, affectionately known as the American muscle car.

Is it time? Can we finally just say it outright, even as we risk invoking the wrath of every true-blooded American gearhead from here to 1965? Oh hell, let's just do it: Good riddance.

Yes, this is just a little bit sad. This is a moment to pause in fond remembrance. You could say it's the end of an era, but of course it's an era that should've ended about 25 years ago. Oh well.

Do not misunderstand. Muscle cars and their pony car brethren -- all those Challengers, Road Runners, Mustangs, Novas, Trans Ams, Chevelles, GTOs et al -- have a hallowed and well-deserved place in American automotive lore. Nothing, not even the full-sized SUV, exemplified the lopsided American posture better. Power over finesse, weight over grace, peel-out ability over handling, go hard over stop quick, sword over pen, meat over vegetable, trade school over college, violent death over aging gracefully.

Forget for a moment that they were, by and large, dangerous, horribly built vehicles with dreadful chassis and zero engineering integrity. Doesn't matter. They were fast. They were wide. They had huge back seats perfect for impregnating various small-town teen cheerleaders. They got eight miles to the gallon and about nine to the quart of oil. They were cool. Sort of.

Not anymore.

Behold this weird new Camaro. It is, in sum, exactly the wrong car at exactly the wrong time with exactly the wrong attitude attached to exactly the wrong hopeless hope for a return to a rather crude automotive golden era that never really existed in the first place.

Why does this car exist at all? No one seems quite sure. But it is, if you spend a moment in the various car blogs, all flavors of a dumb, guilty pleasure, hotly discussed and awaited like a giant extra-large triple-cheese quadruple-meat pizza, ever since GM introduced it as a crazy concept car back in one of those years Before All Hope Died.

Early reviews? Somewhere between lukewarm and "Holy crap, this thing sucks far, far more than it should, especially the cramped, stifling interior. And the handling. And the brakes. And the build quality." Which is, as far as America cars go, about par for the course.

But what about that mean-ass exterior? All the retro car dudes just love the new Camaro's snarling looks, which lie somewhere between a cool flaming dragon your high school stoner friend used to sketch on his Pee-Chee folders, and what a Vegas stripper plays whilst dancing around a pole. Upshot: It's just like the Corvette; another car for 10-year-old boys trapped in 45-year-old bodies.

What, too harsh? Too negative? Not really. It's mostly a criticism borne of frustration. I truly am (or rather, was) hoping for something brilliant and inspiring to come from all that American talent. I was honestly hoping one of these companies would come up with a new idea to save all those jobs (Ford is close), to resurrect the industry and prove we can be nimble and viable and revolutionary.

(Does it sound like I could be talking about my very own media/newspaper biz? The coincidence is not accidental. Similar infuriating problems plague both worlds, with solutions equally elusive).

So maybe what the 2010 Camaro really is, is a fitting death knell, a kitschy cool car that takes American automobile full circle even as it circles the drain. It's the final sign that it's time to look beyond Big Auto for any sort of true revolution or evolution, toward individuals, entrepreneurs, startups, inventors and aging hippie rock stars to solve it all for us.

Wait, what? Why sure. Have a glance, if you will, over at crusty ol' Neil Young, who loves his cars big and his grunge anthems bigger. Neil has already successfully converted his massive, two-ton '59 Lincoln Continental into a biodiesel/electric hybrid hellbeast of the future. His company is called LincVolt, and it's aiming for nothing less than the automotive X-Prize. Who says the future has to be all tiny and wimpy and Prius-y?

Or you could check in with someone like Shai Agassi, the 40-year-old Israeli entrepreneur and CEO of Better Place, a very, very well-funded startup that aims to create a definitive, international "smart" network of electric car charging/battery swapping stations, an elegant meta-grid based around some hugely forward-thinking, Earth-friendly principles. Could it work? Damn right it could. It's already underway.

Of course, if hot, futuristic car design is all you seek, if you really want inspiration and new ideas in automotive design, you skip right past American cars and look to the same place we've always looked: Europe.

Here, for but one small example, is some odd French industrial/energy conglomerate called Bolloré, who hooked in with Italian design gods Pininfarina to leapfrog right over the traditional car manufacturers and, well, create the damn revolution themselves.

Their invention: the B0, AKA the Bluecar, a tiny, gorgeous, all-electric thing that looks like a Ferrari smashed into a Smart car at the Apple Store.

The Bluecar was originally designed as a concept car, to showcase Bolloré's fuel-cell technology. But the thing came out so well, they decided to manufacture it themselves. And so they are. You can pre-order one right now.

Oh, not in the U.S., of course. We almost never get cars like this. Or more accurately, we almost never get ideas like this. What do we get? We get the Volt. We get the Camaro. We get buried.

But hey, at least we look sort of cool doing it, right

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San Francis...enough of that article to know that I do not car to read any more of that tripe.

This guy is an Import humper and an Anti-America San Fransiscan just like the lot of them...enough said.

I will never spend a dime in that city/state (and not just because of the Crappy article that the guy wrote about the Camaro) just because of how they treated our armed services in that city as well as that Idiot Pelosi running our country into the ground!

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WOW :blink: This is so poorly uninformed written piece of junk that my mind truly draws a blank. :blink:

Now that my mind has returned some of it's ability to think, I realize this guy must luv his Asain auto or Euro Trash cars so much that he is one of many stupid journalist that not only cannot think for himself, but really does not understand auto's, quality or anything to do with the auto industry.

Sad Sad Sad, May he wither and disappear from society so we are no longer stunk up by his stupidity. :fryingpan:

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I found this on chirpthird, this was my response over there:

Unreal.

I've never seen such an unholy mix of arrogance and ignorance.

What's his usual beat, the fashion industry?

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Hey All,

I suggest you whip Mark by Emailing him your feedback:

mmorford@sfgate.com

Here was my email to him:

Mark,

Have you ever really bothered to learn something, anything about the auto industry? I have never read the worst written article bashing a company with nothing more than hearsay, lies, ignorance all for the sake of your own personal agenda.

If this is what the SF Chronicle is wanting for journalistic stories based on Zero Fact, then you no wonder our newspapers are dying.

Try the following:

1) Research the actual auto before bashing it and state REAL facts instead of assumptions.

2) Research the market again stating facts and not assumptions.

3) Show the facts of a fair comparison of apple to apples rather than a wild eye dream of an auto that might or might not ever really hit the road on a drastically different power train versus a coming to market auto with efficiency and world class quality in build that will drive sales for the company.

4) Based on the way you wrote your story, it would appear you are possibly a Prius or Civic hybrid driver that can only think everyone should drive like you, be like you, and think like you.

Reality check, not everyone can fit into these hybrid / electric coffins. Not everyone wants to drive that type of auto. If you DID any research, you would find that the pollution to create these so called battery packs is greater than driving a fuel efficient Camero for 10 years.

Prius or Civic Hybrid might make you feel good until you look at the large amount of CO2 put into the air during production of the battery pack, More than what 4 normal auto’s produce in 5 years.

Get some research before you write a story that has no facts.

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I would rather email to the newspaper about what a wonderful job the editors did to hire a first grader.

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Meth bloated pornstar??

Since when does meth bloat you? sorry... oh the outrage! how dare he not like the Camaro.

and since when is a porn star useless??

:neenerneener:

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I don't agree with the guy, but if you put yourself in his shoes, I can understand where he is coming from. If you think about it, the muscle car IS an anachronism in this day and age, what with the environment on everyone's mind, and the economy slapping our wrists because of greed, and excess.

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I couldn't finish reading it. It sounds like it was written by a guy who has been neutered, and rides a segway to work everyday. Or he lives in his moms basement and he's mad because he had to drive a Yugo to high school.

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A well thought out, logical, fact-based criticism of Camaro would have been at least a legitimate opinion to center an editorial around.

This was none of that.

It was a pure attack piece composed of baseless accusations, inaccurate hyperbole, and vitriol.

The author is a stain on his profession.

And the piece is a stunningly irresponsible example of journalistic misconduct.

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If you check up the dude on Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mark_Morford ...

... and read his other articles you'll just see he's a blowhard, paid to be a douchebag. Who gives a $h! what this moron thinks. Obviously his crowd are generally liberal left leaning, so this article is just preaching to the choir.

If he was an actual auto journalist, or someone who had a duty to provide proper journalistic integrity, then I'd be concerned, but this is a screed column, published for $h!s n' giggles, and nothing more.

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This guy's opinion is worth squat, which sums up nicely his ability to write an accurate, factual, unbiased article.

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I found this on chirpthird, this was my response over there:

Unreal.

I've never seen such an unholy mix of arrogance and ignorance.

What's his usual beat, the fashion industry?

That's because you're just a 10 year old trapped in a 45 year old body ... :P

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I read it yesterday...he probably worships the Prius.

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That's because you're just a 10 year old trapped in a 45 year old body ... :P

Riiiiight, that must be it. :rolleyes:

Hard to believe he actually says such a thing in the piece.

This guy is a real prize.

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Even a Prius seems to aggressive for him.

Maybe..here is the Pininfarina BO, the 'Bluecar' electric car he was rhapsodizing about toward the end of the article:

Bluecar

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People like this should be banned from writing articles and should be forced to ride the bus.

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Maybe..here is the Pininfarina BO, the 'Bluecar' electric car he was rhapsodizing about toward the end of the article:

Bluecar

That, and the SMART, remind me of those little toys I had as a kid, where you put a penny in the slot in the back, and wind it up, then when it goes forward it does a wheelie. I'm sure if someone converted a SMART to RWD and had someone stand on the rear bumper they could get it to do a wheelie too.

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That, and the SMART, remind me of those little toys I had as a kid, where you put a penny in the slot in the back, and wind it up, then when it goes forward it does a wheelie. I'm sure if someone converted a SMART to RWD and had someone stand on the rear bumper they could get it to do a wheelie too.

The SMART is RWD, and rear engined! Just like a 911! Sort of.

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This is the biggest piece of sh*t article about any car I have read in a long time. The author clearly beliefs he is better than everyone and that American's should not be able to select what they drive. I hope you get your a$$ run over by some red-neck in a Silverado, you smug, Prius driving bitch.

Edited by gm4life
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If we broaden the definition of journalist to include those who can spell then I would be inclined to agree with the title of this thread.

because, even after sucking up billions in bailout money, GM still doesn't really have a single fresh and forward-thinking idea, and hence the best they can do is scrape the barrel of macho nostalgia in a desperate attempt to cater to male Boomers who drink too much light beer and think Maxim is the height of masculinity and are still debating which Van Halen vocalist totally ruled?

The above is just wrong and goes to show you can write even if you don't know about what you are writing.

This is the "journalistic" equivalent of "Look everyone, I made a doody. Come look." :rolleyes:

Edited by FloydHendershot
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The SMART is RWD, and rear engined! Just like a 911! Sort of.

That just shows you how little I care about that car. I see SMART and I look the other way. But now that you mention it, I remember reading about that when they first started selling them here.

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If we broaden the definition of journalist to include those who can spell then I would be inclined to agree with the title of this thread.

The above is just wrong and goes to show you can write even if you don't know about what you are writing.

This is the "journalistic" equivalent of "Look everyone, I made a doody. Come look." :rolleyes:

:lol:

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