Friday, April 08, 2005

GM Has Finally Had Enough of the LA Times

Automotive giant General Motors has announced they're pulling all advertising from the Los Angeles Times, due to "...strongly voiced objections from our dealers in California about factual errors and misrepresentations in The Times editorial coverage." Translated, that means that David Shaw's vaunted "four experienced Times editors" failed to adequately mitigate auto critic Dan Neil's vicious (and largely gratuitous) attack on GM top management during a review of the Pontiac G6.
At the moment the news broke, I had written two words of a review of the Pontiac G6: "Dump Lutz [General Motors North America Chairman Robert Lutz]."
Then Neil rips into GM CEO Rick Wagoner. The actual automotive review - what Neil is ostensibly paid to do - doesn't start until the seventeenth or eighteenth paragraph. Duh. No Wonder GM flew into a snit and pulled their advertising. Now all and sundry will be whining about "censorship". Piffle, GM is allowed to spend their advertising dollars as they choose, and if they had chosen to continue spending money on a paper whose reviewer obviously hated them, then the GM management would deserve to be cashiered.

But, Neil's most unforgivable act, as far as The Dread Pundit Bluto is concerned, lies in this paragraph:
Honestly, it takes some sort of perverse genius to make the Grand Am, the car the Pontiac G6 replaces, look like a showroom winner, but the G6 is selling at about half the volume of the unloved and unlovely Grand Am, which dates to the 1980s.
How dare you slander the Grand Am, you weasel? Neil, your taste is all in your mouth. The Grand Am, since about '92, has been one of the best looking cars on the American street - nice handling, dependable, and great in the snow. I mourned the totaling of the '93 Grand Am that I had passed on to my son like a death in the family (my grief was mitigated to some degree by my earlier acquisition of a new Grand Prix).

Via Captain's Quarters.