TTAC was one of the first sources to call BS on Globe and Mail journo-hack Peter Cheney’s ridiculous justification for his son’s press-car incident, but as the week went on, more and more outlets picked up on the obvious fact that Porsches don’t jump out of garages on their own. There’s this thing called a “clutch interlock switch”. Mr. Cheney likely figured that, since he doesn’t know much about cars, that the public would know even less. Oops!
The decent thing to do in these circumstances would be to simply apologize to one’s readers and then to return to the whirlwind lifestyle of far-flung press events, free $180,000 cars, and hilariously low performance standards which is synonymous with “automotive journalism”. It would have been quickly forgotten. The man who was responsible for approving Cheney’s original Porsche loaner flat-out told me, “I’ll give him another one.” Of course he will! Porsche, and everybody else in the business, is perfectly prepared to turn a blind eye to Cheney’s misdeeds past, present, and future. I was recently contacted by an anonymous Canadian source who told me that “Cheney’s kid drives press cars all the time, and everybody knows it.” So what? We’re on the gravy train now! Let’s keep it rolling!
Mr. Cheney, of course, can’t just let that happen. He’s apparently done enough “real” journalism in his life to know that there needs to be a culprit behind this incident, and he’s self-deluded enough to somehow miss the fact that his own spoiled son is to blame. As a result, we’ve been treated to another story, in which Cheney, um, finds the real killers. “Now,” he hilariously writes, “I was searching for answers, sifting through the debris like an air crash investigator.”
The accident had been a spectacular one. The car was a 2010 Porsche Turbo, one of the fastest-accelerating cars in the world. In a distance of just a few feet, it had gained enough kinetic energy to blow apart a 15-foot-wide garage door that had been reinforced with extra steel reinforcement ribs.
Yes, only a Porsche Turbo could accomplish this. If you dropped the clutch on a Toyota Yaris, it would just bounce off the door.
Under intense questioning, Cheney’s son claimed to have no knowledge of the incident. The trauma of bashing up someone else’s car and receiving a free driving school as compensation had wiped it from his PTSD-shaken mind. But this did not stop the Air Crash Investigator Of His Own Garage from determining that
Although he didn’t realize it, he had just cocked a 500-hp. weapon. There were safety mechanisms, but he had slipped past them all without realizing it.
Something’s being cocked here, I’ll tell you. A little more introspection under his swelling cherry tree finally leads Cheney to the true culprit.
As I analyzed the crash, I realized that it was about more than mechanics. It was about a generational shift… he went a click too far. The engine roared into life, filling the cinder-block garage with a sound that could be described as a cross between an enraged jungle cat and a giant vacuum cleaner.
When the cat finally breaks out of its cage, chaos ensues, as always happens when genetic experiments of this nature escape. On The Island Of Dr. Cheney, a jungle-cat/Dyson hybrid is too powerful to be controlled by anyone. Add in the fact that children of Little Lord Cheney’s generation are, like, totally not into driving stick-shifts and stuff, man… well, you know whose fault this is. It’s society’s fault.
“Some,” Cheney moans about the Globe and Mail‘s readers, “vilified me as an irresponsible parent, and a fool.” I would say that’s hitting the nail right on the head. To this, and to everybody who points out that Cheney flat-out lied in the pages of a major newspaper about Porsche’s clutch interlock, he states that,
the car did have that safety feature. But in the face of teenage over-exuberance and some bad luck, it meant nothing.
I’ll suggest that instead, it’s Mr. Cheney’s professional integrity, to say nothing of the Globe and Mail’s reputation, that “mean nothing”.