On the 18th of September 2016, the Volkswagen emissions cheating scandal - commonly called 'dieselgate' - will turn one year old. To celebrate, those filthy, polluting bastards at Volkswagen and Audi in Australia have come out publicly like a pair of petulant little bitches, with a deeply narcissistic temper tantrum.
I just love a good corporate temper tantrum, don't you?
Skip straight down to the Volkswagen and Audi Oz petulance personified temper tantrum >> or get caught up on the dieselgate back-story next (immediately below).
The VW dieselgate fairytale so far...
Once upon a time in the early 21st Century, senior engineering and management criminals at Adolf Hitler’s former car company decided it would be a nice idea to pump up the profits and kill people prematurely by cheating the emissions performance of their two-litre diesel engines, which they fitted with a poison gas-emitting deceit device.
This deceit device was quite advanced, and several university educations at Bosch (see this
breaking news >>) and Volkswagen were required to design it covertly to emit up to 40 times more poison gas than that which was allowed by regulations. The regulators were very, very lazy and the deceit device was very, very clever. So Volkswagen’s criminal technocrats patted themselves on their backs, and got set to take over the world.
But unfortunately they got caught with their pants down, holding their reproductive organs, one very sad, public day, about a year ago. And as we all know, that’s quite undignified.
So undignified that it caused the Volkswagen big boss at the time, industrial rockstar Martin Winterkorn, to bail out, and although he forgot his parachute as he departed the plane, and although he plummeted almost 30,000 feet to the ground below, metaphorically, he landed on his wallet.
And he lived happily ever after. The end.
More on Martin Winterkorn >>
So the moral to the story is: If you’re going to cheat, be really, really rich … or just don’t get caught.
Oxides of nitrogen - the poison gasses in question - are toxic chemicals. A peer-reviewed study in the journal: Environmental Research Letters >>, estimates 59 premature deaths in the US alone. The same study found 130 additional deaths would be prevented by making the cheating vehicles comply with emissions laws by the end of 2016. Good luck with that.
Learn more about oxides of nitrogen in Australia >>
About half a million vehicles in the US are affected - that’s about four-and-a-half per cent of the total globally. Official global death toll estimates are unavailable. So if we pro-rate those deaths, multiply by 22, for a ballpark estimate, for 11 million cars, that’s 1300 prematurely dead people. One thousand, three hundred. (Or 4158 if they don’t fix their f^ck-up by the end of the year.)
Four thousand plus: That’s more deaths than those Saudi Al Qaeda assholes killed 15 years ago in New York. Imagine if Boko Haram, Al-Shabaab or Hamas killed 4000 people - westerners - tomorrow. How indignant would you feel about that?
Why is this any different? Those lives matter too. Surely your life is not worth less outrage if you are killed by a carmaker instead of a terrorist? See my full report on the dieselgate scandal in 2015 >>
Genuine contrition? Huh?
Former Volkswagen US Boss Michael Horn (at the lavish US Passat launch, symbolically enough in New York City in 2015) said:
"So let's be clear about this:
"Our company was dishonest. With the EPA. And the California Air Resources Board. And with all of you. And in my German words, we have totally screwed up."
And then, bizarrely enough, he said (I think in English this time):
"Thank you very much for coming. Enjoy the evening. Up next is Lenny Kravitz!"
Jesus Christ, and all the other sons of fake friggin’ gods. If only narcissism and sociopathy were Olympic sports. That’s gold. If there was ever a car company that should be touchy about gassing people to death (Adolf, we appear to have done it again…) These knobs just do not understand humility or contrition. Sorry I murdered your parents. In my German words I have totally screwed up. But thank you very much for coming, enjoy the rest of the day, and up next: Lenny Kravitz.
It hardly qualifies as a reasonable expression of remorse, in my opinion.
Basically, Volkswagen prioritised their profit over your health - which makes them, in my view, off-the-chart sociopathic, narcissistic, murdering motherf^ckers. An organisation worthy of your extreme opprobium. Just 12 months down the track, they are acting with absolutely no remorse at seemingly every turn.
Of course, putting the Humpty Dumpty that is the Volkswagen Group - which includes those cocks at Audi - putting ‘Humpty VW’ back together again is of course costing a bomb globally. Billions. But here in Australia, the two brands have basically come out swinging: And this is where the story gets seriously weird.
The petulant temper tantrum In Australia
Volkswagen and Audi have both pulled out of - as in, declined to participate in - the Australia's Best Cars awards for 2016.
Here's the back-story:
Despite the dieselgate scandal, in 2015, in the media, while thinly veiled Australian advertising delivery systems like Wheels Magazine and CarAdvice continued to provide quite an enthusiastic faux-journalism fellatio-on-demand service for Volkswagen, Audi and Skoda, the national motoring organisations under the umbrella of the Australian Automobile Association - the Triple-A - disqualified the the Volkswagen Group from participating in the coveted Australia’s Best Cars awards in 2015. And fair enough.
It just goes to show how consumer-centric and impartial an organisation can be when it does not need to suck hard on car company advertising revenue to survive commercially. And this next bit is just so beautiful, not to mention interesting … because Australia’s Best Cars awards for 2016 is rolling around fast. And Volkswagen, still smarting from being disqualified last year, has decided to disqualify the Best Cars awards first. A pre-emptive strike of sorts.
Volkswagen Australia’s boss Michael Bartsch delivered a concise motherload of bullshit on behalf of Volkswagen Oz on D-day 2016, when he said that the Australia’s Best Cars awards:
“[Australia's Best Cars awards] lack validity.”
Which, in the domain of irony is in my view a case of sticking your head so far up your rectum that it pops back out your own mouth. And he did it with a straight face. I don’t know how.
A carmaker alleging the Triple-A awards - representing seven million Australians nationally “lack validity”. That’s kinda funny, not to mention intensely hypocritical, because after resounding success in the exact same awards in 2014, the year before disqualification, those cheating bastards at Volkswagen are reported to have described the Australia’s Best Cars awards as:
“The nation’s most comprehensive and independent customer-focussed vehicle testing and awards program.”
Uhhhh. Houston? Might have a problem here, because we’re talking about the same awards, you retards (the validity-lacking and yet most comprehensive, independent, and customer-focussed ones). The ones Volkswagen spent millions implicitly endorsing and promoting in advertising (like this advertisement of theirs, right).
Don’t you think there’s just something profoundly gorgeous - irresistibly attractive - about a car company shooting itself in its own dick with nothing more than its own previous statements?
Audi’s bolted-on spokesperson, Anna Burgdorf, is also reported to have confirmed that her trumped-up Volkswagen sub-brand is similarly disinclined to subject the four rings to Triple-A scrutiny this year. (A case of: 'We disqualified you first. No returns,' as we used to say as kids…) Ms Burgers is reported to have said:
“At this stage we won’t be supplying cars to the [AAA] test program [because we need clarification] that would allow fair judging of our vehicles”.
Isn’t it ironic to hear an organisation like Audi frame any post-dieselgate debate in the context of fairness? It’s almost like those four-ring retards were victimised last year, and need assurances this year before they would even consider going on a second date. In my view, children in the playground act more dignified than this.
(And, to be clear, here and generally in this report I’m talking about the companies - not big, bad Bartsch nor Ms Burgers, nor other individuals. They’re just delivering the message for corporate entities.) I’m being flippant about this because a) that’s me, and b) this is just so serious. We’re talking about criminal conspiracy, deaths in the thousands (potentially), and financial damages to millions of customers. That’s the real context. And all Volkswagen and Audi can do in Australia is act like a pair of spoiled little bitches. Incredible.
Time for critical thought
Not nearly enough people practice critical thought in our society. There’s ever more bias towards feelings and opinion - which is a worryingly regressive trend for humanity.
I’d be the first to point out that corporations are not people. But how would you judge Volkswagen and Audi if they were?
Profound self-obsession plus the apparent complete lack of remorse paints a deeply disturbing picture. If someone commits an act against a person you love - runs them down on a pedestrian crossing - whatever - you will never be friends. But you will feel differently about them - somewhat better - if you believe they did it accidentally and they’re genuinely broken up about what happened.
If the dieselgate scandal were that pedestrian crossing tragedy, Volkswagen was the driver. They planned it. And, now, they don’t give a shit someone got hurt. It’s sociopathic. Lack of remorse in this context is unconscionable. In criminal cases, lack of remorse often leads to harsher sentences, in part because there are logical grounds to suspect recidivism is more likely.
That could easily be the case here.
Playing the 'victim' card
One of the classic things narcissists do is: They play the victim card. But here’s the hot tip: When you plan to run someone down in a crossing - 11 million times - when you get caught - on camera - holding the knife - embedded in someone else’s chest - your prints are on the knife - their DNA is all over you - and you do the crime in front of a dozen supreme court judges and the Pope, all with photographic memories and stone-cold sober - you don’t get to be the victim. Because you’re a criminal.
I’d say to Mr Bartsch and Ms Burgdorf: The Triple A did not victimise you or act unfairly by disqualifying you in 2015, any more than Lance Armstrong was a victim in relation to his retrospective cycling disqualifications. It’s Oscar Pistorious: Not a victim. As apparent spokespeople for Audi and Volkswagen in Australia, I’d suggest acting like a pair of spoiled bitches who aren’t getting Pokemon Go for Christmas is absolutely not the way to play this. (Personal opinion.)
Attacking the Best Cars awards - taking the polar opposite position to that which Volkswagen adopted when it won so many Best Cars categories in 2014 - is the only thing about these awards which lacks validity. Everything else - rock solid. Volkswagen and Audi’s bullshit here is wafer-thin. Anorexic. Indefensible. Mr Bartsch, in particular - take a note.
Love is blind
Volkswagen and - to a greater degree - Audi, have another disturbingly narcissistic tendency: they need need you to love them blindly. They spend millions on this - no amount is too much. They want you to open your legs for them - and by 'legs', I mean ‘wallet’. They don’t want you to think critically about them at all. They want you to gag for it, and put out.
It’s only in this ‘gagging for it’ mental state that you could hope to tell yourself (for example) that a Q7 - the quintessential Slovakian shitbox - is good value. It’s $110,000. Twice as much as a Kia Sorento Platinum. I’m not suggesting these are equivalent SUVs. They’re not. But it's $110 grand, for Christ's sake - plus four grand for adaptive cruise, plus two grand for heated seats, plus four grand for a panoramic sunroof, plus, plus, plus. These items are all standard in the Sorento.
Only an extremely horny person - gagging - all that blood, rushing south - unable in the moment to sustain critical thought … only that person (ie: a rich, horny wanker) could think the Q7 is a reasonable proposition.
Hey, I don’t mind people spending a lazy hundred and twenty on a prestige car. Really, I don’t. But for $60 grand over the odds, I’d want the cool badge as well as more prestige features, not fewer, and the Q7 absolutely does not deliver a credible premium features set. Not standard. (And let’s not forget that the gun Audi designer actually designed the Kia.) Q7 is just one example of the critical thought folly exemplified routinely by Audi ownership.
So it’s like this: when you take the infatuation out of Audi and Volkswagen, and you think critically instead, you get a set of truly woeful value propositions wrapped up in reasonably nice cars that drive OK, until they break down and the unique underlying so-called ‘customer service’ experience comes to the fore.
In other words, you discover - painfully enough - that your love is not reciprocated; that they don’t actually give a shit about you, post-purchase.
You get all this, totally free, from a company employing tremendous resources that will not only not support you, but it will move against you without a moment’s warning, as it did against 11 million recent customers, without an ounce of remorse, and it will play the ‘victim’ card - go 100 per cent Pistorious (legless in a bathroom in Cape Town) - when anyone calls them on it. Does that sound like a good idea to you? Buying a Volkswagen? Really? An Audi?
Speaking now directly to you Volkswagen fan-boy tools and trolls: thank you sincerely for taking your time reading this report, and your inevitable indignation. Looking forward to hearing that from you in the comments. (I love the smell of troll in the morning. Smells like outrage.)
Volkswagen & Audi: They’re both an unequivocal 'don’t buy'. That's a rational assessment based on critical thought.
If you really did not like this report, console yourself that, perhaps, in my Australian words: I have totally screwed up. Thank you for reading this far. Enjoy the rest of your life.
Up next: Lenny Kravitz.