What’s Going On And What’s Happening Next

Let’s start with this: I’m not closing this site, but I am changing it.

Let’s continue like so: Very shortly, it’s going to cost more to have been my enemy than it will to have been my friend.

What I mean by that: On July 15th I’ll be launching my Substack. If you’ve ever commented or participated on Riverside Green then I’ll be offering you a permanent discount via email. If you’re interested in that, but you’ve changed your email or you want to be certain of it, leave a blank-ish comment below and I’ll make sure you’re on the list. If you’re following me on social media but haven’t commented, shoot me a note over there to be on the list.

The folks who just want to scan my Substack for something they can use to hurt me and my family, as they’ve done on this site for the last eight years and almost constantly for the last three, will have to pay full price. Don’t worry, kids, it will still be worth it!

Click the jump to find out why I’m doing this, what you’ll find on Substack, and what you’ll find here.

There’s no time like your first time, and for me the first time was with a twenty-something sophisticate and fellow John Updike fan named Jill Geiger. She hired me at Bicycles Today when I was nineteen years old. Let me write an absurdly self-indulgent monthly column that would often run as long as 4,000 words. As an editor, she was peerless, because as John McPhee once wrote, she knew the most important word in the trade, namely: stet. (For you non-writers, that’s an editorial notation that means “Leave it alone and run it like that.”)

About two years into that wonderful gig, I wrote something that really annoyed the head honchos at GT Bicycles, which at that point was like the 800-pound gorilla of BMX. I was racing the junior pro class at the time — and badly — so they sent two monstrous AA Pros named Gary Ellis and Charles Townsend to shut me up. After a few minutes of exceptionally tense conversation, however, I kind of won them both over to my side of things. So the GT people did the next reasonable thing: they withdrew their sponsorship of the magazine, at which point I got fired.

That was in 1994, believe it or not. Long time ago. Hard to believe that basically the same thing could happen again, decades later. Maybe it didn’t. But I digress.

Since then, I’ve had good editors, bad editors, woke editors, savvy editors, and even a cowardly boss or two.

Neil McCauley: You must’ve worked some dipshit crews.

Vincent Hanna: I worked all kinds.

The whole time I’ve been under someone’s thumb, even in my own writing. This site has long been constructed with a jeweler’s eye for the fine line where “speak the truth” becomes “lose your job”. I haven’t always been right about that, by the way. The last few years have been particularly bad. When you have what is arguably the best gig in autowriting, there are people who will work night and day to take it away from you. There was no limit to their deception, their cowardice, and the repugnance of their conduct. A while ago I sent a non-industry friend to a new-car press drive, a complete unknown in the business, and he reported accidentally sitting in on a whole dinner where a dozen or so autowriters and two PR people did nothing but float ideas on how to get me out of autowriting for good. “It would be great if he lost his house and custody of his son, too,” one fellow sagely noted, and there was a general nodding of heads.

Mike Ehrmantraut: Whatever happens next, it’s not gonna go down the way you think it is.

I wish that all the stories they told about me that night were true: I’d be the greatest villain in history, instead of an aging dad with a hundred-plus broken bones and a mild knack for turning a phrase. And I’ve long wondered why so many people spend so much time hating my guts. It could be as simple as this: When you spend your life being subservient to others, it’s intensely frustrating seeing someone else refuse to do the same. It calls your own choices into question. In the same way that very few people are strong enough to do someone else an injury without inventing a reason why that person deserved what they got, very few people are strong enough not to hate someone who won’t get in line next to them.

Harrison Bergeron: Even as I stand here, crippled, hobbled, sickened – I am a greater ruler than any man who ever lived! Now watch me become what I can become!

I’ve come to realize that may no longer be any room in the autowriting game for people who won’t write and say exactly what they’re told. Under the august leadership of Robert Farago, The Truth About Cars came closest, but since then it’s always been possible for the automakers and PR people to reach their slimy tendrils into a company and work their will via connivance, compulsion, or cash. The industry is quickly moving towards “influencers” and video anyway, two areas where editorial integrity and truth essentially don’t exist. Even the people who don’t need to kneel before the automakers — outlets based on trust funds or success in other lines of business — kneel anyway, because something inside them enjoys kneeling.

This is a windmill at which I can no longer tilt. So I’m just going to do my own thing, away from the media corporations. Write what I want. Tell the truth, without reservations. Name some names and shame some shame-able behavior. Review some cars and be brutally honest. Expose some of the dumber and more lamentable aspects of the business.

Maybe I’ll make a few bucks at it. Maybe I’ll end up making the ends meet by asking people if they’d like fries with that. Doesn’t matter to me. I’ve done everything the twelve-year-old me wanted to do. And everything the sixteen-year-old me wanted to do. There’s a difference between the two, of course.

Alright, to business.

Ford Prefect, Zaphod Beeblebrox : [drunkenly toasting] To business!

From Day One, my Substack will contain more than a half million words of:

  • All the classic Avoidable Contacts (some of the bystanders call them Avoidable Content, which tickles me) from the Farago era and from before I signed away my rights, Prince-style, to VerticalScope later on;
  • All the stuff that I had to edit and remove from this site under pressure from my previous employer;
  • Articles that I felt were too hot or controversial to publish when I wrote them;
  • Other pieces that I think deserve a re-examination;
  • Various fiction pieces;
  • Maybe some of the old bike stuff. I can’t imagine it would be of interest to most readers now.

After that, I will be writing new long-form pieces on a weekly basis or more often than that, many of which will tell the stories I haven’t been able to tell until now. Topics include: automotive, music, literature, criticism, history, politics. Don’t expect a Vox-Day-style right-wing sandblast, or even a Curtis Yarvin series of intelligent insinuations. There are plenty of people working that space already and they don’t need company. While I can’t imagine that what I write will have much appeal to the ultra-Current-Year crowd, I have no interest in upsetting my left-of-center friends and readers.

Once I get started, I’ll take a look at the reader feedback and adjust appropriately.

This site will continue as well. Some of it will be blatant pandering aimed at getting people to join my Substack; I’d be foolish to throw away the advertising potential of a site that does this much traffic. But we will also have:

  • All the guest writers and posts you’ve come to know;
  • New pieces by me on non-automotive topics;
  • A few Greatest Hits from the old days;
  • Anything else that seems reasonable.

I’ll be writing a fair amount on this site between now and July 15 so please check back.

That’s it for now. I’ll close by offering my most sincere thanks to everyone who has read this site. Even the sad little people who have combed through it again and again hoping to discover a way to make me as sad and unfulfilled as they are. My readers have made it possible for me to have a life that seemed out of reach when I was a child. Writing has never been the most lucrative thing I’ve done, or could have done, with my time. But it has always been the most rewarding. I can’t wait to continue that journey with you, free from the slings and arrows of outrageous censorship. Let’s have fun.

480 Replies to “What’s Going On And What’s Happening Next”

    • Edp

      I’m in, just don’t go off the deep end.
      Love your writing, and it’s truly strongest with your stories of family and personal adventures, not politics.

      • Dennis Haakenson

        I’ve always been a lurker; I’ve never commented that I can recall. But sign me up! Having followed your writing since TTAC, I have no problem saying I’d subscribe to read you write about anything including gardening, marine biology, or 18th-century Albanian poetry.

    • westinakasanchez

      I don’t always agree with your takes on things, but I have always respected how you express your opinion and your writing. Looking forward to reading your work in the future.

  1. PaulyG

    I hope this does not mean leaving Hagerty. You have made their website top notch. And I will sign up for Substack.

  2. Michael-Scott Earle

    When I got banned from Amazon for “making more money than any other fiction writer on the store” the same thing happened with me. Personal attacks from the “also rans” who never came close to my popularity trying to do everything they could do to get me banned from all other retailers. When I started selling my books directly on my site, they emailed Shopify to try to get them to close me down. Then they did the same thing with Kickstarter when I funded a project. Their goal was to take away every possible cent I’d ever made in writing, and the possibility that I won the game fairly never crossed their loser minds.

    The crabs in the bucket never think they are their own worst enemies. They always need a villain to justify their personal failures, and they’ll stoop to the lowest of lows to eliminate you, since they would have gone back in time to kill baby Hitler.

      • C

        Hi. I have followed your writing for several years and appreciate it on many levels. This is my first comment. I would like to be a part of your substack group so i can read your articles. Thank you.

        • Johnk

          Hi. I also have followed you many years and never commented but I look forward to continuing to read your work. Thanks

    • Ronnie Schreiber

      Like Richard C. Meyers and Ethan Van Sciver have said regarding those who hate how they liberated themselves from the mainstream of comics, the goal wasn’t to make you penniless and incapable of earning a living, the goal was to get you to off yourself.

      In the same vein, like Adam Carolla has said, try to make your own pirate ship so you can’t be cancelled.

  3. LC

    Be happy to read your substack. Been one of the many lurkers that, regardless if I agree with your thoughts, enjoys your writings.
    And yes, I’m in Texas, have proudly driven a Prius, a brown Flex, numerous Coopers and minivans, and don’t own a pickup at this time. Keep up the fight.

    • -Nate

      (Paraphrased) : ‘And yes, I’m in Texas,and don’t own a pickup at this time.’.

      !! Internet sacrilege ! .

      No pickup truck in _TEXAS_ ?! .

      Say it isn’t so please .


      • LC

        Indeed, it is so. Thought I might be banned but this is such a forgiving group, I feel safe (in my little Cherokee.)


  4. Erik

    While I am newer to this group, I’ve enjoyed my time here immensely, and I’ll be happily joining the Substack side as soon as it becomes available.
    I do recall early on expressing a tinge of guilt, as I was getting so much enjoyment from your efforts here, while not having a way to contribute to its operation, and your time of course. Seems now I have a chance to, literally, put my money where my mouth is.
    Or in the words of Don Barzini, “Surely he can charge a fee for such services. After all, we are not Communists.”

  5. Chairworthiness

    Sounds wonderful. The new car business is so dreadful (and even worse, just plain uninteresting) so it’ll be fun just playing the hits, as it were. Any idea what the status is of the “Ford dealer rep seduces Droopy the Dog into taking Aerostars in exchange for a few more Super Duties” story? I thought it was a TTC piece but none of the search engines were turning up anything useful.

  6. Longtime Lurker Firsttime Poster

    Been reading since Farago TTAC, through Herr Schmidt’s bondage years, and onto here. Sign me up!

  7. link3721

    Great news Jack, I feel like you’ve been tempting us with this kind of thing for years, and you’ve finally decided it was time to let it all out.

  8. Paul Alexander

    What is Substack? I want to follow but I’m not familiar and I don’t see a link. Thanks for all of your’s and Bark’s writings. You guys also reached out to me personally when I lost my job back in 2018. I’ll forever be grateful to you two.

    – Pa

  9. Paulson

    Automotive journalism is now EV propaganda. Free speech cannot be tolerated when the purpose of an industry is eliminating the middle class.

  10. Ryan

    Can’t wait to see what you have in the pipeline.

    I don’t know what I could possibly help with, but don’t hesitate to reach out if something crosses your mind. I owe you one.

  11. Dogman1050

    I’ve been following your writings around the web for years, and have been a bit of an evangelist on your behalf to my friends. I don’t always agree with you, but your arguments are always well-considered and thought provoking. Looking forward to what comes next.

  12. Scout_Number_4

    Count me in, please. I haven’t missed many of your pieces in the last five or six years, I’m very curious to see the ones that “nearly got you fired“ and of course read your commentary about same.

  13. Samuel Morse

    The also-rans that are trying to pull you down sound like a bucket of crabs.

    Never subscribed to pay for anything on the internet since “unlimited internet from AOL” but methinks that break is over.

  14. redlineblue

    Seems like yesterday (because it was) that I sent a note to Hagerty telling them that even though/kinda because you piss me off sometimes, I’m glad and grateful to them for publishing your work.
    While I wait to subscribe to my first “substack”, do I owe Hagerty a retraction of the nice things I said about them?

  15. Chicago Robb

    Sign me up. Not covered much is that cars will have a remote kill switch come 2026 from what I read. Going to be interesting

  16. Tom Klockau

    All the best to you. I’ll continue with my Brougham-obsessive content if that’s kosher.

    All else I’ll say is this: miserable people loathe seeing happy people. They’re what my late friend Jonny Valadez called “pusscakes.”


    • jc

      If Jack’s grand new vision for this site doesn’t include your Brougham content then he might as well nuke the site from orbit. I always learn something from your work. Hopefully I’ll own a big old car nobody cares about for you to take pics of soon.

  17. Matthew H

    If the gloves are coming off at Sub I’m in!

    I met an “auto journalist” once- he hated you. I’ll have to tell you the story, but I’m sure you’ve heard better.

  18. Ryan

    I’ll see you on Substack. I’ve been a fan of your writing for years and am looking forward to reading or re-reading your earlier work.

  19. SajivW

    I do hope this doesn’t mean that you aren’t leaving Hagerty completely because you really took it to the next level. I genuinely hope they appreciate that fact.

    Also, please sign me up. All the best for what the future holds, been reading your work for something over 10 years now and will certainly stick around for a few decades more.

  20. Ian Brown

    Long time lurker on the site, best wishes with the transition to Substack. Count me in and good luck.

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      There was no “they”.

      For the record, not a single autowriter or gadly in the business ever managed to do anything to my job prospects except put me in a situation where I had to listen to an HR person for a few minutes. “They” are powerless.

  21. RichJ

    Jack, they say you get what you pay for, and I would have payed for this level of entertainment and thought provocation the whole way, so sign me up. Shame that this is where we are socially now, but it’s everywhere. I routinely have to deflect complaints and confabulation at my job on a weekly basis (sometimes more frequently), despite the fact that, if / when I am fired, there will no longer be anyone to literally save lives (were I to be your driving student, I would be the worst kind). Thin skin is in, I guess.

    So, count me in, and keep up the good work. I’ll spread the word to the good ones I know.

    By the way, hope the hagerty gig isn’t being affected by this–be a shame if I had to cancel my membership, but I’ll be damned if I support an entity that doesn’t have the spine to do what’s right instead of what the torch and pitchfork set (the common clay of the new west…) demand. Morals and ethics count to some of us still.

    Best of luck, can’t wait to see what the new site brings.

  22. TJ

    I’ve been reading you religiously and commenting infrequently under various names since the RF TTAC days.

    I guess you’ll be the one to get me to finally, formally sign up for substack

  23. dal20402

    I disagree with you early and often, and think you’re sometimes an insufferable egomaniac, but I’ve always enjoyed your writing and will pay up.

    I would enjoy the opportunity to say what I mean, but I have a career that inherently requires quite a lot of discretion and a family to support in a very-high-cost place. I’m glad for you that you’ll have the chance to do it. Maybe once I retire I’ll be able to go beyond the occasional snarky tweet.

    Best of luck.

  24. Sam

    Sign me up. Been a lurker for about 6 years now, a lot of what you write about are things I can’t bring myself to write down, but I like the mental stimulus and thought processes of the commenters here as well.

  25. John Van Stry

    I’ll be there too. I’ve had to deal with some of this behavior as well (plus I recently spent a very large sum of money in federal court taking down one of those assholes everyone loved to hate, but no one ever DOES anything about).
    I’m a fiction author, like my friend MSE (though not as successful), but again, there are always those folks trying to cut others down for those very reasons you put forth above. It’s annoying how they worm their way into positions that while not powerful or well paying, it still allows them to harass you constantly. Because I don’t kiss the robe and I’ve always spoken my mind.
    I really do hope this works for you.

  26. Christopher Roy

    I have followed you since the first TTAC post. I will pay whatever is required to keep doing so.

  27. Dan Sexton

    I have been reading and enjoying your work for many years, wouldn’t miss the substack. Please sign me up.

  28. firebert

    Count me in, please.

    I came for the cars, but stayed for the media, culture, and fiction pieces. Those have become increasingly relevant to my life as I became a father, and sole breadwinner, in the last few years. Still love the cars, though.

    I don’t work in a particularly woke workplace or industry, but I’ve still always been the type to keep my head down when it came to the heterodox. So, I admire your courage in the face of the threat of being made unemployable, and I’m rooting for the success of your substack for that reason.

    Looking forward to seeing what comes next. Onward!

  29. Will

    Sign me up too. Also, isn’t it about time to start writing those pieces that you couldn’t and name names? Figured since they took you out, let it rip. But then again, not every bridge needs to be burned. I pine for the days of starting my own thing again, I felt freer when I was an entrepreneur than at any other time in life.

  30. Frank Galvin

    Jack, I’m all in on the Substack. Can’t wait to see what is next. This reminds me of a great exchange in The Departed. Jack Nicholson as mob boss Frank Costello asks some sad sack neighborhood guy how his mother is doing. The response is “she’s on her way out.” Jack flashes his trademark grin and tells him the line that resonates, “we all are, act accordingly.” Here’s to you doing what needed to be done.

  31. XHawkeye

    Making sure my email is in your database for the Swamp to cross-reference.

    Best of luck with the new endeavor.

  32. michael marmorale

    I read the content here daily and always look forward to Jack’s pieces. The brougham stuff is great too, need more Mopars.

    I rarely comment due to a combo of being too busy or lazy to do so.

    But sign me up for the substack, then forgive me for starting a sentence with “But”.

    Great work on the content here and on Haggerty. It has been a pleasure consuming this content, it gets better every year. Can’t wait to see what the material looks like when “The gloves are off”!

  33. ScottS

    One of my dear friends told me years ago, “The best revenge is fine living.”

    Here’s to fine living! I’m looking forward to the Substack invite.


  34. Sobro

    I figured your content was about to be niggardly released like common sense on Capitol Hill so I signed up for notifications using my real email addy instead of the fake one I use for comments.

    I’m looking forward to an invitation to your Substack.

      • Dan

        I’ve been an on and off commenter here over the years. I look forward to seeing this previously unreleased work, and I’m sure I’m not alone in looking forward to finally having some mechanism to pay you for writing I’ve enjoyed so much over the years (since 2009 or a bit earlier).

        Out of curiosity, will you also be reposting the “maximum street speed explained” articles up on the substack? I was shocked to see TTAC hasn’t taken them down.

        • Jack Baruth Post author

          I could repost them… could also rewrite them to reflect 14 years’ worth of changes on the road!

          • Dan

            A more modern take on those articles might turn into “how to drain your entire EV battery in 75 minutes”.

          • jc

            Loved those articles. I was in high school when the road and track version came out and my buddies and I broke every law on the books trying to figure out what you were talking about in the article. Step 0 should have been that all of those tips work better in things that aren’t 3/4 ton trucks.

  35. Brian Horecky

    Jack, sign me up. Lets ride soon. You should swing through chicago land on your way out west this year to ride the Big Marsh park. Shoot me a text or DM if you do.

  36. Greg Zinter

    I have been a lurker since the Robert Farago TTAC rev 1.0. Always enjoyed your perspectives and writing. Please sign me up for Substack. I look forward to what is next. I also hope your gig at Hagerty continues. It is the best automotive writing since the glory days of Car and Driver.

  37. Josh Howard

    I’m in. Been waiting for this. You have my full fledged support in more than just monetary ways.

  38. RaspyPuma

    Onwards and upwards, Jack. Looking forward to the Substack.

    Hopefully things are amicable with Hagerty. If not, they’re losing the linchpin of their new media empire (and their best columnist to boot).

  39. Bill Kinnon

    I’ve been paying for a number of writers at Substack, who, though very talented, don’t come close to your gift, Jack. I look forward to reading you there.

  40. JK

    Long-time lurker here. I love your writing. Please sign me up!!! Like others, I’ll have to figure out what a substack is.

  41. John C.

    I hope you do well with Substack. What I would be worried about if I were you is that once you put your truth out there on the few subjects you hold back on the output will drop off, as happened here with Bark though I am amazed he has time for any thoughtful writing with his high power job. Your life in the country will be full of hard work to put together the spread you have in mind, probably in phases over years.. A lot of your output here were links to stories in other outlets you were paid to write on some kind of schedule. That will be less the case and I am not sure Substack does much to suggest you to new readers. A stagnant reader income stream then does less to motivate new output.

    I am also worried about letting it rip on Substack. So many alt tech socials quickly revert to the same blacklisting and shadow banning as Facebook and Twitter. See Getter, Parlor, Truth Social, Patreon , Dlive, and Telegram. Then you are still silenced and the bastards have a new list of your subscribers to target.

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      These are all valid points but I’m perfectly capable of writing 10k words a week while working 80 hours at a day job. I was EIC of Truth About Cars while I was building an oncology platform from scratch.

      Substack’s bread is buttered on the side of independent thinkers. You can get CNN’s side of it for free in every airport.

  42. Marcin Laszuk

    I am also a part of what I assume to be a sizeable group of lurkers that rarely or never comment. I’ve often felt that even when I wanted to add to the conversation, I was simply outmatched by others in the way of raw experience, personal connection to the topics that you cover, and – most importantly, I guess – ability to get my point across without spending the better part of an hour polishing the response to a level I will find acceptable; and since I do not subscribe to the “I have an opinion; therefore speak I must” line of thinking, I often lurk and take in what you and the commenters write. Still, if you see a Polish IP persistently visiting the site, reading the posts, clicking the links, and not doing much else besides, chances are it’s gonna be me.
    Given how long you’ve been teasing us with eventually spilling it all out regardless of how “problematic” it will prove to be, or what the “general consensus” on it is, I’m glad you finally gave in – even though I assume that necessitates going independent as I find it unlikely that any modern organization, media or not, will be able to stomach the level of forthrightness and unorthodoxy that you promise here, for long. Still, I believe that you have your bases pretty well covered finance-wise, and it must have been gnawing on you for long so this was probably always a matter of when, not if.
    Or am I wrong, and you plan on staying with Hagerty for the time being? Being from Eastern Europe, and having two rather pedestrian Renaults, Hagerty was not on my radar until recently so I don’t know how it fared before taking you onboard but seeing the site as it is now, I bet they would stand to lose a lot if you left them.
    I’m looking forward to reading your substack (whatever that is) and just like many of us here, I will gladly pay up for the privilege. Count me in.

    • Eric L.

      You say that as if the semi-regular commenters aren’t also spending an hour drafting and tweaking each of these comments… 🙂

      I see Substack added comments, so you don’t have an excuse for not trying the occasional comment out on there, Mr. Laszuk. Imagine how many other lurkers are tired of hearing about Detroit, Idaho, and Ohio. Simply by living in Eastern Europe, you automatically bring a novel set of life circumstances to any discussion. (Especially if John C. is involved, ha ha ha)

      • Marcin Laszuk

        Yeah, you must be right. Now that I think of it, I don’t know why I believed that everybody else has their comments thought out and ready the second Jack releases a post while it takes ages for me to write one. But anyway, thanks for the encouragement, Eric. I’ll try to be more active – here or on substack, once JB sets it up and I finally learn what the damn thing actually is – especially since I don’t really have anyone in meatspace to talk to about the topics that Jack and the commenters cover.

    • Dan

      Another longtime lurker from the other end of the earth. New Zealand in my case.

      Ended up here via Road and Track.

  43. B

    Longtime lurker, definitely disagree with a few (oh, who am I kidding, a lot) of your takes, Jack. But I cannot fault any bit of the writing, which is far better than most of what passes for such on any website these days.

    When the substack comes online, I’d love to see it.

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      The good news is that you’ll be able to put your foot in my ass on the Substack comments. I’m not too old to learn.

  44. TangoWhiskey

    I’m generally a lurker here but did comment once when the crazies wanted to cancel my High School mascot. Sure you could look it up if you wanted to. Anyways I loved reading you on R&T and more recently Hagerty. Don’t know what Substack is but good luck with it.

  45. Compaq Deskpro

    I’ve been reading since around 2012 when I realized TTAC was unusually good compared to the traditional auto media, and have never paid for anything other than an occasional banner ad, so I owe you by now.

  46. A.F.

    Jack, I would like to be present for the next leg of this amazing journey. Your writing is always thought-provoking and entertaining in equal measure.

  47. S2kChris

    I only understand about half the references, and occasionally roll my eyes at the sophomoric “look how many chicks I banged!”, but the writing is never boring. I’m sure I’ve paid more for less interesting entertainment than the SubStack will be so count me in.

  48. Jim Young

    Most interested, and have appreciated your writing since early TTAC. I think I even commented once or twice, only a fraction of the thoughts resulting from reading your work.

  49. Harry

    Count me in please. Can you post in here when the code goes out Incase it goes to spam/I am not paying attention to my email?

  50. DON with a Radical SR3

    Sign me up. Like many others, I found you on Hagerty and went to the google for more and came up with RG. Never done SubStack but will figure it out.

  51. sgeffe

    Send me an Email with instructions.

    It would be a shame if you did give Hagerty the heave-ho (or worse, vice-versa), since I thought that place had a little integrity left. And if I were to run across some 1980s time-capsule commodity-mobile to cherish, how would I insure it?! I wouldn’t wish to give a red cent to a place which would thank you for reinvigorating their presence by caving to the linguini-spined wokesters and throwing you over the side!

  52. Jeff Zahorowski

    I’ve been reading since TTAC. Thank you, Mr. Baruth, for your continued excellence and commitment to craft. Your writing shows a real dedication to the craft of writing not often seen. It would be a pleasure to support your work on Substack.

  53. MD Streeter

    There are a couple of Substack writers I have been tempted to support monetarily. You’ll be the first one I actually pony up any cash to. I’m looking forward to the transition, it seems like a pretty good (and fearless) platform. I’ll still be visiting here, too, since there will still be interesting stuff to read.

    I also love seeing this outpouring of support. There were 100 comments here before I even clicked the link in my email.

  54. MaybeI

    Long time reader, first time commenter here.

    10 years ago I finally tired of the same old same old from the car mags I had been reading since my teenage years in the 80’s. I stumbled across TTAC and this is the first thing I ever read there:

    An Open Letter To The People Who Make Decisions At Cadillac

    Dear Cadillac Decision-Making People,
    I hate you. Yes, you…

    I’ve been hooked on your writing ever since. Will definitely pay to read you and your crew on Substack.

    Best of luck!

    • dejal

      If you need a car fix, grab “Old car” magazines. They are old by the time they make it to press, 10 years from now they will still be old. Other than articles on repair or restoration there’s no need for the magazine to push the car company, but just maybe the products. Like Hot Rod Magazine will push LS engine swaps and basically SEMA attendee products. Which if that floats your boat you will need anyways. Or Collectible Automobile. Just stories, but you pay more not to see advertising other than for Collectible Automobile.

      The big 3 (not so big anymore) did great even if the stories were car ads, when cars only lasted a couple of years. Because the cars were junk you kind of had to stay in the knowledge game in case you needed to replace one. With cream puffs being anything under 200K miles these days there’s no need to stay tuned in for the latest and greatest anymore.

  55. tmkreutzer

    This is upsetting. While I cannot say that I agree with everything you write, I must say that I have always admired what you do. You are simply fearless. You talk about your personal life, your hopes, your aspirations, your problems and you put it all out there for people to pick away at. How you manage to summon up the will to keep coming back after every hit amazes me.

    And I would think that the people you have worked with over the years would leap to your defense. I wrote for TTAC without pay under Bertel. At the time I was just excited to be a part of something great, but today I realize I was being used. Within a day of Bertel’s ouster, you wrote to me, asked me to continue and offered to pay me. I’m not sure what I made in relation to other authors on the site, but it was a nice monthly addition to my income and I have always appreciated it.

    I was honored when you and Mark asked me to contribute here as well, and I was happy to do so until I ran out of steam. I wish I had been able to continue. Hoping you include me on your email. I’m looking forward to helping.

  56. Scout_Number_4

    Looking through the comments, I’m relieved to see that I’m not the not only one unfamiliar with substack.

  57. Trucky McTruckface

    Sign me up.

    Been following you since TTAC when you were writing about “The Wobble” in autojournalism and boozy, well-endowed girlfriends. Looking forward to your uncensored takes on, well, everything.

  58. Gene White

    Well, hell. The only automotive content I pay for online is Cold War Motors; guess this’ll make two things. As long as Toly Arutunoff drops into the comments once in a while.

    Looking forward to some additional mind-expansion, to be provoked, and to think hard about my owm assumptions. This’ll be good.

  59. -Nate

    I have no idea what a ‘substack’ might be but you’re a *very* gifted wordsmith, have no doubt so I hope I’mm make whatever comes next .

    Kudos for not knuckling under, I have the same issues and i don’t know jack about anything important but others seem to fear me for your mentioned reasons .

    I hope your new digs work out well and John continues to get good life coaching from you .

    ? Isn’t there some sort of magazine or forums for old guys who still fondly remember crashing their BMX bikes ? .

    I’m sure you’d be very welcome there, you always have great stories and spin a good tale .


  60. Jeff Weimer

    I’m in on the substack. You’d be the second I’d be willing to pay for after Dave Burge (Iowahawk).

    • Ronnie Schreiber

      Burge is a national treasure. I’d say that he’s funnier than any of the supposed comedians on late night tv, but that’s a very low bar to surpass.

  61. JustPassinThru

    I’d like in, as well.

    A shame it has to come to this. I thought the job with Hagerty would be a good fit.

    But it seems that Cancelling, punishing, doxxing, and, worst of all, duplicitous writing for general readers…is the way of things today. What was left of straightforward commentary on automobiles (and other things) is dying with the Boomers. The younger generation is proud to “influence” and proud to lie to perform that influencing.

  62. Patrick King

    I discovered you the day after David E. Davis, Jr. died. He had just returned to Car and Driver and written a column about his new Cadillac Escalade. He closed the piece by mentioning that he would be undergoing minor surgery. The next thing you know…

    Your reminiscences of DED were at odds with all the others I read so I sought out more of your writing and have enjoyed it to this day.

    I’ll happily follow you to Substack where I also publish an infrequent blog: https://bimmerfan739.substack.com/p/bbp

    Yours will be only the second Substack blog I pay for after Matt Taibbi’s.

    Best, PJK

  63. DaveL

    Please take my money! I’ve been enjoying your writing for many years and have always been willing to support you. Looking forward.

  64. sciuccs

    I have been aware of you since the mid-00’s, when I was (mainly lurking) on VWVortex. At that time, their Car Lounge forum moved quickly, and was full of posters of all ages. Whenever I had any downtime at work, I would check it out, and the day would fly by.

    At some point, Vortex started an online car magazine (Motive?) that had generated a lot of buzz. I recall many posters wanting to write for Motive. Once launched, many of the mouth breathers on Vortex praised Motive for its laid back style, and writing that was similar to “how people talk”

    Not long after that online magazine came about, you started a thread in which you took an editor’s pen to one of Motive’s articles. It was brutal, it was bold.

    It was hysterical!

    The shitshow that followed in that thread was epic. To date, that thread remains one of the most memorable things I have ever read on the internet. Ruffled feathers of Motive staff aside, solid points were made about adhering to standards, and not letting the great writing and editing that existed in print magazines slip away simply because the articles now appear on a computer screen.

    You have stayed true to that point, and have since generated an enormous amount of high quality content that I have truly loved reading over the past 15+ years. I still have car ADD (now of the non-VW variety,) but only own two watches, have no kids, and haven’t rode a bicycle since the day before my 16th birthday. Doesn’t matter. I always enjoy your articles that aren’t car-related. Please count me in for your new venture on Substack.

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      That thread made Eddie Alterman my permanent enemy. For years he chopped away at my Hearst/R&T gigs as a result.

      • sciuccs

        No kidding? Another layer is peeled off of the onion. Vortex sure didn’t want to receive any feedback about Motive that was less than positive, but that is extreme!

  65. Adam 12

    I don’t sign up for anything that requires a subscription….until now. There needs to be an exception to every rule correct?

    Now to figure out what a sub-stack is.

    One request. Can you get Crab Spirits content on the new address? Maybe have a seance or two to raise the dead stories? Along with your writing was always the bright spot on TTAC.

    Oh and do not reveal the author. That would be like taking the mask off the Lone Ranger and making him wear Foster Grants.

  66. Matt

    I’ve been reading you since “Maximum Street Speed Explained” on TTAC and I’m looking forward to continuing reading you on Substack. Please send me the link. Are you going to continue the “Critics Respond” posts? I particularly enjoy those and there have been a couple points you’ve made recently that I’ve wanted to, well, criticize.

  67. JWB

    Put me down for two boxes of Thin Mints.
    Wait, where am I?
    To you and the writing crew at Hagerty: Please continue.

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      I’ll continue, and they’ll continue, but never the twain shall meet. I’m no longer shining shoes for insurance executives.

      • CJinSD

        I was concerned that Hagerty seemed to employ ever more of the people I’d bailed on Car and Driver and Automobile Magazine to get away from.

      • Dirty Dingus McGee

        Hate to hear that. Reckon my money will be going to Grundy in the near future.

        Like others, I have no clue what a Substack is or how it works.

        But send me the invite and I’ll likely give it a shot.

      • Ark-med

        I would hate to not get to read Ethan Gaines’s columns on the occasion that he posts. Since you brought him to Hagerty, I hope they don’t defenestrate him due to the association.

      • ScottS

        Well, damn. I’m sure we will get the gory details after July 15th. If history is any guide, this event portends the ultimate crash of the Hagerty automotive journo empire. I WAS concerned when Randy Pobst showed in Jason Cammisa’s recent video.

      • Carmine

        “You’ve been gone a long time Billy….maybe nobody went upstate and told you…..I don’t shine shoes no more….”

      • Andrew Kochanowski

        I met you and Sam Smith at Grattan a couple years ago. We chatted about Hagerty, you were excited and it seemed like a better platform than R & T. But it seemed to stagnate awfully quickly. And the articles grew…longer. That aside, one hopes in Substack form you’ll continue on EVs and Chinese automotive outsourcing, but maybe not morph into Pete DeLorenzo….

        PS does Substack support photos? Freed from corporate form, you would also be freed from the awful photography that permeates the genre.

  68. Eric L.

    I feel vindicated that so many commenters braved leaving the Land of Lurkers just to state “Hey, I’ve been reading you for free for years, and that kind of makes me uncomfortable…” That fits me to a tee. Do you know how much money I’ve fed bands such as Brookyln’s Anamanaguchi or Cincinnati’s The Seedy Seeds? Grossly overpaying for all kinds of knick knacks just to say “Thanks for making weird music. Please keep making more of it.” Your writing’s not as niche as Gameboy chip tunes layered under drums and guitars, but equally deserving of some kind of remuneration.

    But it also makes one think, reading of the hatred poured out at you and Mr. Michael-Scott Earle who immediately replied. What is wrong with me that I have never drawn the eye of Sauron? 🤔

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      There does seem to be a stronger than average sense of moral obligation among my readers. What does that say about me? Maybe it’s just that I attract decent, forgiving readers regardless of my own failings.

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      Yeah if only I could make millions of dollars lecturing people about why they need to set their country on fire!

  69. Gally Threepwood

    I’m another longtime lurker who’s emphatically interested. I’ve enjoyed and profited by the content here ever since I discovered it (circa ~2018).

  70. Wes


    I’ve thoroughly enjoyed reading your writing over the years going back to the TTAC days. It’s brought me countless hours of joy for which I will always be grateful. I can’t wait to read your substack, please sign me up.

  71. JNels

    I’ll try substack. I’ve probably read almost everything you’ve written since Farrago-era TTAC and I appreciate your intelligent and humorous approach on a whole range of topics from cars to geopolitical tensions to economics. My response to your most-excellent writing can be laughing out load to days-long contemplation on a previously held viewpoint. No other writer since Patrick Bedard or Peter Egan has done that for me, so for that, I’ll gladly subscribe.

  72. John in San Diego

    You have come here to chew bubble gum and kick ass, and you are all out of bubble gum. Please add me to your invite list.

  73. Michael W

    I’m in! If it weren’t such a sad and damning indictment of the current state of our society, it’d be funny observing the rage that gets directed at a genuine, forthright person these days. As if it’s the ultimate in crime think to espouse an opinion other than what the collective has deemed appropriate.

  74. trippster08

    I’ve been following you since the TTAC days, mostly as a lurker, but have maybe made a comment or two. Over the years, I have tried not to miss any of your eloquent, often hilarious, usually educational, and, admittedly, sometimes frustrating, writing. I will gladly support your new venture on substack.

  75. C

    I’ll be there! I have been reading you since the end of Farago, while I might not always agree I’ll always think.

  76. yossarian

    i can be really dense. i’ve been reading you since the ttac days and i never read anything that i thought was that offensive. i mean you savaged a few people but i never saw you take out a car the way farago did with the subaru vagina. but then again, i’ve lost at least one job by unknowingly offending a thin skinned back stabbing co-worker. my solution: work the overnight shift where they expect you to be a crank. it goes without saying that i’ll subscribe. seems to me that substack is the right place for you.

    • Ronnie Schreiber

      i’ve lost at least one job by unknowingly offending a thin skinned back stabbing co-worker.

      Anyone who thinks red flag laws regarding firearms won’t be abused is delusional.

  77. CJ

    I don’t think I’ve ever commented but I’ve followed you and your brother since way back at TTAC. I’m in!

  78. Andrew Kochanowski

    Great move to Substack, it’s the obvious choice at this point for you even if Elon takes over Twitter– 280 characters ain’t nearly enough when you get going. I think you’ll make out just fine financially. Heterodoxy sells there.

    Like others, curious about Hagerty, I guess we’ll see how it plays out.

  79. A

    Joining the chorus of the longtime, freeloading readers. Have been resisting joining Substack for a while to try to avoid getting a “death by a thousand paper cuts” to my bank account, but it appears the tipping point has been reached.

    Thanks for all the entertaining and insightful articles over the years.

    • gtem

      I’d been resisting signing up for any recurring podcast/substack/etc type subscriptions for the same reason and at least in part out of my “proud luddite” nature, but last year finally gave in and signed up for a $5/mo podcast (and have zero regrets), and now will gladly dip my feet into this substack thing, knowing full well the quality of content that I’ll be receiving. Jack is dragging me into CURRENT YEAR tech kicking and screaming!

  80. Paul M. Jones

    Hi — have been reading you for several years now; especially enjoy the social/technology/parenting work. Think I have commented once or twice. Would love to keep up on Substack too. Thanks for everything!

    • JMcG

      Strange, I’ve been commenting as JMcG for years now. I didn’t know two people could have the same username. I hope no one gets us mixed up.

  81. Acd

    I’ve been a fan since the TTAC/Farago days and came in somewhere around ordering and then getting the paint to spec green S5 and have gotten many hours of enjoyment from your writing over the years.

    For the life of me I don’t understand silencing people and keeping them from expressing their ideas, I understand ignoring things or people but what’s the point of shutting people up? I don’t particularly like the WaPo or the NYT so the solution is to not read them, not to keep them from publishing.

    There is no doubt that your Substack will become a destination publication just like everywhere else you have had a hand in creating. Sign me up.

  82. bjarnetv

    It was about time!
    I don’t comment all that much any more, but i have been reading all your stuff since the early days of TTAC so sign me up!

    99% of Car blogs has gotten borderline unreadable the last couple of years, so i was hoping you would try to shake things up again one day – hopefully this time you will stick the landing and influence a new generation of writers to do some independent thinking and not just go down the safe and comfortable route of mommybloggers and sad press release copy pasters.

  83. Jonathan Howlett

    Good luck, Jack. I’ll be adding Baruth to my substack subscription list alongside Taibbi and Greenwald. I like their model. You’ll fit right in. Hopefully it’ll allow you to maintain your land baron status.

  84. Cdotson

    I find your ideas intriguing and would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

    I’ve commented off and on before, read you since at least the Maximum Street Speed series (loved it). Just wanted to be sure to make the cut

  85. hank chinaski

    I’ll sign up but under a (poorly disguised) alt, and more than happy to do so. There is a non-zero possibility of Substack going converged at some point, and linking payment with anything less than somethign like Monero makes it pretty easy to hurl the bad thinkers into the void, and some of my comments here would be enough under the right circumstances.
    That said, I can’t imagine that jerks with enough free time to hound you over these years wouldn’t kick in a few bucks to screenshot content to keep making trouble for you and yours.

  86. Airquotes

    Hi Jack, I’ve been reading for years. I’m glad you’ll be able to write what you want and will eagerly sign up for your Substack. Have you ever thought about doing a podcast as well?

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      I have a face for radio and a voice for silent film, so probably not… but if I could get someone with a Barry White baritone to balance me out I’d try it!

  87. Stray Child

    I have greatly valued what you have written on this site, despite all the constraints you have had to observe; so I eagerly await seeing what you write given free rein. I will certainly check out your substack.

  88. Burgersandbeer

    It’s unfortunate that you have to spend any thought fighting this crowd.

    I’ve only left a handful of comments, but I don’t miss many posts. Count me in for the substack.

  89. Sammy B

    Yet another longtime lurker. I may have commented once, but can’t recall. Probably not. I’ve always loved your writing back to the TTAC days and even though don’t share some of your views, I appreciate hearing them (and thinking about them). Never any fun to just be in an echo chamber.

  90. Gene B

    Sign me up!
    It’s like in the last days of communism, people knew they were bring told lies and flocked to truth tellers.
    It’s just more complicated in our times, as the “corporate line” of lies and PR Speak permeates virtually all fields, making it necessary to find the truth tellers for every single topic, be it politics, medicine, cars, oil industry, Russia, etc. We all see the rot. It’s a sign it won’t last long.

    Substack is the current place for truth tellers until it’s necessary to find the next outlet. For now it’s a great, though – even with a small following it can be financially lucrative. Some fantastic Vaccine truth tellers there like Steve Kirsch and Bob Malone. It’s also a great strategy for the borg – keeping the truth behind a paywall virtually guarantees a niche audience, but it allows us to LIVE!


    One of the more fascinating articles I came across, and a good example of substack writing:

    • CJinSD

      Imagine if we had a legitimate media. The people performing experiments on entire populations would be hiding in South America instead of being as smug as they are renumerated.

    • Ronnie Schreiber

      I don’t know if it matters to his credibility, but the author of that piece didn’t exactly end up in prison for stealing a loaf of bread. He’s a convicted pedophile who groomed a 13 year old girl he was hired to tutor. He plead guilty to sexually abusing a minor, soliciting a minor to produce child pornography and third-degree sex offense (statutory sex contact with a minor short of actual rape).

      I mean he might be credible on the science but in general he’s not a source that I’d cite.

      • Gene

        How much great art and writing was done by scoundrels? The question remains…is what the author states true?

  91. Rob

    I subscribed to R&T for two years just because of you, I bet I get more use / enjoyment from a Substack sub. Add me to the list please.


    • Bryan Kaywood

      I grew up about 45 minutes from 2002 Hogback Road and used to drive over and cruise the lot in hopes of getting a glimpse of something cool/interesting. Wanted to be an automotive journalist or John Buffum. Saved every R&T and C&D in bankers boxes. Wore a black armband when Mr Egan retired, now I follow you.
      Needless to say, sign me up

    • dejal

      Same. Magazine even with Jack wasn’t anywhere near it’s glory days in the 70s and 80s. Too much of a “Life Style” magazine.

  92. Mike

    A shame about H, I really enjoyed the content over there. I’d been contemplating joining the Driver’s Club; with your departure the odds of that happening now approach 0. Budgetary-wise that frees up Substack funds…

    Also glad I never moved my classic insurance away from Grundy. I’ve had them for 20 years now and absolutely no complaints.

    • sgeffe

      Hopefully Sajeev and Klockau move away from the formerly decent old-car insurance company as well.

      Looking forward to hearing what impelled you to the separation, to paraphrase the Declaration Of Independence. I can’t see how a gig like Substack could sustain your various pursuits—hopefully there’s some sort of IT thing quietly happening, unless I’m COMPLETELY off-base, or have my head shoved somewhere!

  93. Jim

    Mixed emotions about this, as I woke up one day and no longer had any interest in cars. I keep coming here for the non-automotive content, so I hope there is plenty of that on the new platform.

    I’m guessing $5/month, or $50 per year? Works for Taibbi.

  94. Ian Johnson

    It has been a good time following you as a lurker over the many years. I’ve always enjoyed your writing and story telling about cars and life and your love of Frank Herbert is icing on the cake. I am in and best of luck moving forward.

  95. Hop

    Long time reader, always wished I could support this site directly (in a more meaningful way than disabling UBlock), so count me in. Full access to the back catalog is a draw for me especially; I regularly revisit past articles to draw inspiration.

  96. swiss

    I’m a long-time lurker, first-time commenter. I appreciate your content, and that of your contributors. I’m looking forward to re-reading your back catalog and your new, unfiltered content on the substack.

  97. Joe in Bow

    Please count me in, Jack. You and Mr. Up In The Valley are the online writers I most enjoy. I wish you much success.

  98. The Zarf

    This is my asking to be added to the list if you are in fact creating a Substack subscriber list. A while back you answered a question about what radio ear plugs you used and they were great!

  99. Ronnie Schreiber

    As much as you hate video, I still think you should do some kind of podcast or livestream. It can’t be any worse than working for someone else. You already have an audience of both fans and haters. Grow your brand. Monetize the hate. The revenue from livestream SuperChats can be very significant, as the folks covering the Depp/Heard trial have proven. Your Substack and your podcast channel (whether YouTube, Rumble, or both) can exist synergistically.

    • Eric L.

      Didn’t you see that video–that I can no longer find–with him and Sajeev Mehta pimping some Hagerty thing? You should never be forced to hear writers speak. I couldn’t stop laughing at their accents for minutes. MINUTES. Baruth has the voice of a tenor born in Charlotte and raised in Cleveland (HOW THOUGH) and Sajeev has a Texas drawl? What a pair. The issue with us computer types is that, upon hearing our voice, you immediately go, “Hmm… You a programmer, boy?”

      • Jack Baruth Post author

        Ahem I’m a tenor born in NYC and raised in Columbus! I can sing some baritone parts however. About twenty years ago I started speaking a little higher to improve my job prospects, it’s a long story.

        • Eric L.

          Exactly: This is why your voice is so confusing. It doesn’t sound like any of the places you’ve actually lived. Maybe your genetic programming has an off by 1e3 mile error. Speaking in a higher register to get jobs… so do you lower it to get women? That raises so many questions I don’t want answers to.

  100. Sean

    This makes so much sense. Please sign me up, too.

    The Substack model has healthier incentives for writer/reader/platform. Naturally leads to higher-quality writing, even if it pushes everyone a little further into their own thought corners. They’re VC-funded, so I’m curious to see how those standards evolve vs. the need for growth.

    Looking forward to reading you over there. And really looking forward to see what happens when Baruth writing is fed into the content recommendation engine.

    You might break it!

  101. Birju

    Sign me up Jack. May have commented under a different email but I think I’ve used my first name here before asking about delicious tacos.
    Also totally random but what happened to bigtruckseries?

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      I truly don’t understand what happened to him. I haven’t heard from him in years.

      • dejal

        I mentioned him in a post a couple of weeks ago. He still has his Youtube channel. It’s pathetic. Sometimes now it’s down to “I bought a Best Buy Insignia Air Fryer, here’s my review” level videos. TDS did him in.

  102. Ben

    Hi. Please sign me up. Read you on TTAC, R&T, Popular Mechanics, and other places on the net. Look forward to what you have to say. Always appreciate your thoughts on topics. Best regards.

  103. Don W Curton

    Just chiming in with my email and blank comment. I’ve commented before, but it’s been a while and wanted to be included.

  104. SS

    In all these years reading your (well, both of yours’) prose across all the different platforms, never have commented here (frankly, I never comment just about anywhere). Thank you for continuing to be a source of information and references and ideas (and allowing us suburban boobs to live vicariously through your exhausting activities).

    Like many of the readers here, I am unfamiliar with substack but will look it up.

  105. GatorStan

    As with many others, been a reader since the RF years at TTAC. Fun fact; Frank Williams was my squadron commander–a lifetime ago–when I was on active duty. Hopefully, you and Brother Bark are going to tag-team Substack.

    • gtem

      What in God’s name is going on in that photo for the NYT article…. never mind, best to not even ask.

  106. OneWhoKnows

    Please sign me up. As another of the non-commenting silent majority(?), I’ve enjoyed your writing since you arrived at TTAC. Your voice hearkens back to the glory days of the quality writing at C&D.

    Re-Reading your dissection of the Peloton xmas commercial & comment threads alone would be worth the price of admission.

    No-habla Substack (yet), but I’ll follow you there.

  107. Jeff Calhoun

    I have thoughts about commenting on RG nearly every time I tune in but I’m not sure if I ever have. It’s intimidating to add anything elevating to the musings of our modern day LJK Setright. Anyway herewith my grovel for a bit of discount on the Substack.

  108. Pete C

    Please sign me up! Long time silent avid consumer of your writing and ideas. Following this blog since finding your writing on TTAC. Seems like eons ago with how the world has shifted, and I like THIS world better.

  109. dejal

    Why does it always end up with grown ass adults acting like a High School Mean Girls Clique? n this case, retrenching of the auto writing industry and it’s turned into the Hunger Games?

  110. Crancast

    All these new, never commented before’s are certainly endearing, but who’s the mole and who’s looking for a discount worried they now end up as a title character in a not so flattering episode …

    Call it a failing, but I do not pay for content. My very few forays into the walled gardens have become monotonous and the audience turns into rabid fans shouting down any dissenting viewpoint. When choosing to pay for the privilege, not many will continue to do so over a longer haul only to have their viewpoints discarded while battling the fanboy mob.

    And yet … I will give substack a try, because if any community is going to survive the ills of the walled garden, it is this group here. But I will say, I am betting against the user community and commenting to survive, which has nothing to do with Jack excelling on substack or anywhere else (which he will, you useless troll f’s).

    GLWTA for what target is first on deck, I’m expecting a good one!

  111. Crancast

    On the topic of Hagerty. Enjoyed #153. The P1 reminds me more of limited supply shoes, cards, NFT’s, watches, etc for the hipsters. Since #100, #130, and #150, I kept thinking there is a Reece Bobby in Applebees moment not too far off in the distance. Hagerty being Reece Bobby without the happy ending and getting shredded by the cougar (the trolls they enable).

    Kudos to you Jack for building an absolute juggernaut at Hagerty Media from quite literally NOTHING with one of the worst IT groups ever (went a year plus without his hyperlinked name taking you to his pieces and having John listed).

  112. Craig

    I’d like to learn more about signing up! Gotta consider more in the made in the USA bike series! 😉

  113. Greg Broswell

    First time commenter because I try to emulate Proverbs 17:28. I’ve been a long time reader but developed my man crush on you with your post “Because That Is According To My Principles”. Knowing nothing about the subjects of technology and fashion I admit that they are frequently over my head but I appreciate the exposure and education. I will gladly monetize and join Jack “John Galt” Baruth despite my lack of intellect and skills. Godspeed

  114. goose

    Reading about hostile, unscrupulous, plotting automotive journalists reminded me of this clip from Ford V Ferrari, starting at 2:30 or so:

    “But deep down, who they hate even more are guys like you: because you’re not like them; because you don’t think like them, and because you’re different.”


    I hope that youtube embed worked

    To Business! I raise a pan-galactic gargle blaster to your exploits

  115. UGAJim

    very long time fan and reader but I’ve been a lurker, and definitely want to be included……please send me the info. Thanks!

  116. chris soleim

    Please me add my name to the list as well. I don’t comment here a lot (I will take at least partial credit for setting you on the path to a gas Super Duty however), but I read every post and I’ll continue to do so at the new place.

  117. APL

    I have been following your writing for many years. The content is good but the writing itself is why I tend to wander to your corners of the internet when I have the time.
    I am sorry to hear that you are in a change cycle that it appears you may not have initiated. The next thing will be better.
    On to other important things, you have often referred to your Updike fascination. I wonder, have you ever read “U and I” by Nicholson Baker? I would be interested in your thoughts if you have.
    Keep up the great work. I look forward to watching from the stands (happy to pay for my ticket) as you continue on your path.

  118. Chris Bruce

    Will you play a role in Substack rolling out its prototype “Magazine Mode” allowing editorial supervision of sub-contributors’ written, photographic, video, and audio content?

    Kind of like what you did at R&T and Hagerty but they can’t take it away from you?

    Looking forward to the Beta release of “Blaggardey”

    Whatever you do, sign me up, thanks.

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      At thus point I’ll try anything once. Like Edison, when it comes to autowriting I’ve just tried 10,000 things that didn’t work.

  119. Roamer

    The mental picture of the collective reaction of the auto writing press alone makes this worth the cost of admission.

  120. JF

    Count me in for sub stack. Like many longtime reader, very occasional commenter and all this just makes me realize I need to respond more and maybe actually share my own writings, which I’ve wanted to do, before the whole cancel thing comes for us all.

    Excited to see where this wild story takes us all next, Jack. Especially as someone with similar hobbies, and views but a tad younger.

  121. John Lock

    Do you think you could delve into “dead internet theory” in which around 2017 AI, bots and algorithms basically took over the internet? Kinda similar how before iPhones the internet was full of useful and easily found information and now it’s all curated content (often from private label rights). It was easy to find forums related to the topics you were searching with endless threads discussing solutions largely from well meaning and intelligent people.

    Or perhaps discuss the theory that the reason that NPCs are proliferating isn’t just due to an education system dominated by leftist/communists types but rather due to the lack of soils. That there a finite numbers of souls and we’ve exceeded the max many times over. Why there are so many people that have no inner monologue.

    There are more of these conspiracy theories that make me really ponder the world we are in. Longing for the past world that we are told existed but probably was built on lies…..

    How do we struggle against the establishment that seeks to institute “kind authoritarian government”. When our leaders say the truth that the constitution is just a piece of paper and all they need is enough people to agree with them (which our pillars of civilization consciously or unconsciously are advancing).

    But then all of history is struggle and our rare golden age is rare. Ramble, rattle mumbles….

    PS Nate, no one here “fears” you, sorry to burst your bubble

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      These are all outstanding topics although the souls idea verges on quantum physics and/or theology.

      • Compaq Deskpro

        Do you think quantum physics is BS? I’ve read into it while I’m not qualified to understand it, they seem to be making up stuff and naming random reactions. Quantum computing needs significant energy put into keeping the machine cooled to absolute zero, all so you can get random results. What’s the point of this? Random number generators? Security? I wouldn’t mind a post explaining what the hell they’re talking about, at least think their talking about.

  122. Daniel J

    I think Substack or Locals is the best way moving forward for many writers/podcasters/influencers. The fundamental problem I see with this sort of engagement is that I feel most will be talking in an echo chamber, and that there won’t be many trolls who are willing to pay to….troll. This means that engagement over those who disagree will be low.

    I frankly admit that I do read several folks substack(Matt Taibbi, Bari Weiss, Greenwald…), but I’m cheap, so I only read what is available for “free”.

    I also have a legit fear that one day the feds will somehow “know” who or what I’m subscribed and paying for, and weaponize that against me.

    I wish you the best of luck moving forward.

  123. Tony Grace

    I never have commented, but have always enjoyed your work and since discovering Riverside Green a couple years ago, been a religious follower of the posts made here. Please sign me up, I am looking forward to more!

  124. Gregory J

    I’ve been reading your material religiously since TTAC and SpeedSportLife – I’ve never commented but we corresponded over a cycling jersey once. I refer to you as ‘my favorite auto writer’ to anyone who will listen – reading your work is always an absolute pleasure – thank you!

  125. Philip Kopesdy

    Count me in. Been enjoying your writing for ~10 years since someone pointed me to TTAC. Great to see you moving to Substack (btw what does it say about the current state of our world when so much insightful content has to go underground like that?)

  126. carrya1911

    There were a lot fewer vindictive cunts in the world when there was a realistic expectation that behaving like a vindictive, obstreperous cunt would result in getting punched in the face. I’m eager to see the stuff you couldn’t print before.

  127. David English

    Congrats. Lurking since 2017. I feel some sadness for the passing of classical journalism, but maybe the time has come. Many great writers are moving to alternate venues. I first got on substack because of Ted Gioia. See ya over there.

  128. RPD

    Add another lurker to the list. Best of luck with the new venture. I appreciate the critical thinking on this site, and look forward to the new one.

  129. someofthoserocks

    I’ve read nearly every piece of your writing since Steve Sailer wrote:

    “Anyway, this is just an excuse to bring up the name of Jack Baruth who is a really good car writer.”

    You are a lot more than a really good car writer and I look forward to the substack.

  130. Thomas

    Well it’s been close to 15 years of reading your great work, so no sense in stopping now. Sign me up and let’s do this!

  131. jpdfr

    Jack, long time fan of your writing.
    Looking forward to seeing what your next chapter looks like!

    Sign me up!

  132. P.E.N

    Discovered you on R&T. Found you over at TTAC. Followed you to Hagerty. Then found Riverside Green.

    Very happy to read your excellent work.

    Please sign me up for your substack.

  133. Mark Russell

    Long time lurker since the TTAC days. I’m in on Substack and look forward to the new content.

  134. G Jetson

    Damn, I feel like I missed the initial rush to respond on the 22nd.

    On the other hand, it is a nice walk down memory lane at this time to see so many positive comments from pseudonyms (and names) I recall from all the various locations of Jack’s writing over the years — Ronnie, gtem, Nate, Klockau, kreutzer, CJinSD, John C, sgeffe, Dingus, and so on. A motley crew if ever was one.

    I keep coming back for more and would like to continue too.

    Thanks, Jack, for including me (and us all) on your adventures, travails, and life in general. As seen above in the number and content of comments, you are highly appreciated.

  135. Dale

    Didn’t care what a Substack is, or how it works until now. Looking forward to seeing your next step in writing.

  136. Brian

    Can’t wait to read through all the old pieces now that they’ll be in one place! I’ve followed you since the TTAC days, subscribing to Road & Track, buying your Never stop Driving book and even insuring my truck through Hagerty Insurance. Really enjoy the magazine, by the way.

  137. Cgjeep

    Been a huge fan since TTAC. Have read everything you posted here but never commented. My first car was a Quantum as well. Not to get all “Stan” on you. Please include me on the discount list.

  138. Brawndo

    Been following your writing since Farago-TTAC (I still have a t-shirt featuring some old Mercedes you were racing at some point). I already subscribe to one substack and follow a couple of other cancelled/unpopular writers there so this shouldn’t be a big change for me. It’s sad we’re all funneling down into our various pigeonholes but I suppose this is the way of the world.

    One vote here for putting up your BMX writing from the 90s. I can’t promise I’m super-interested, but the internet these days is lacking in interesting rabbit holes filled with arcane information. For someone out there that kind of information will fill in the blanks of their curiosity, or stoke their nostalgia.

  139. deskLAVguy

    Please sign me up. And greeting from the ‘Texas of Canada’! I will happily pay to read your work. I get much more out of it than from the awful current year versions of Car Magazine and C and D.

  140. BC

    Sign me up as well. Have been reading since the TTAC days, then to R&T, now at Hagerty (even have a crankshaft-through-the-skull t-shirt). Looking forward to the Substack…

  141. Damfino

    I’m not sure if I’ve ever commented before and under what name, but I can’t wait to read your Substack.

  142. bluebarchetta

    Guess it’s time for me to come off the hip and pay for your work, Jack. (I did buy the Never Stop Driving book, so I guess that counts.) Sign me up.

  143. Jake

    I have no idea what a substack is…. But I like cars and bikes. I like your writing and humor. Let’s do a new thing.

  144. Larry

    Looking forward to the Substack and finally a chance to give back for all of the value you have provided over these many years.

  145. Adam Cawley

    Please add me too the list. I always love your writing and don’t mind paying for it if that allows you to do more of it. Thanks!

  146. Jeff T

    Jack, sign me up. Been reading your work for 12+ years uninterrupted and would like to continue. Also interested in the old bike articles!

  147. Aleksei

    Long time listener, first time caller. Sign me up for the substack, will be my first subscription for one, but it will be well worth it. I have to mention, that I really appreciate your take on our glorious EV future and your commitment on calling it out for the shameless eco-hippie propaganda that it is.I also like to read Autoextremist, but when he goes on about EVs, it gets boring right quick.

    Keep up the great writing!

    • dejal

      Wow, I haven’t thought of the Autoextremist in years. Used to be bookmarked, I can’t remember why I walked away.

      • Ryan

        Because it’s become basically “Old Man Yells at Cloud.” There’s only so many times that you bloviate about about “True Believers” caught amongst the “Swirling Maelstrom” before it gets old.

        And that’s the High-Octane Truth for this week.

  148. seinfeld-bassline

    over a half decade ago, i wrote you an email (which you answered thoughtfully in an ask jack column and remains a cherished memory of mine) in which i said verbatim “I will follow your writing wherever you go, even if it is just writing lewd comments on a Playboy article from 2005” and that is no less true now than it was then. please sign me up for the substack. all the best.

  149. Tillman

    After following you since the golden days of TTAC without every posting, I’m doing so now to get in on this.

  150. Jason Price

    I’m in. Sign me up. And if you’re going to be in Utah, please let me know, as I would like to shake your hand.

  151. VTNoah

    Excelsior Jack. I will be happy to sign up and pay for you substack. Both you and Bark are solid humans that I disagree with often and heartily but very much enjoy hearing and considering your points of view. I look forward to the new page.

      • Ronnie Schreiber

        Isn’t going through security scans with metal in your body fun?

        The other day going to see Dead & Co with my (adult) kids at Pine Knob, the metal in my left knee triggered the metal detector, which was probably a good thing as it distracted them from the “Cutter Card” that I carry all the time and had put in the basket with my phone and other pocket items. The Cutter Card is a very cool bit of swag I picked up at the SAE world congress (which always has the best swag for techies). It’s a folding knife with a 3″ stainless steel blade that stores in what appears to be a credit card case.

        Also, why do venues ban “recording devices” when a iPhone can do professional grade video?

  152. Kevin Flynn

    Long-time reader*, seldom-seen commenter. You live a life that is in an absurd quantity of ways almost exactly 1 SD ahead of mine – IQ, dedication, formative-parenting, deep background in both IT and The Arts ™, career / financial / hobby success, age, commitment to fatherhood, joi de vivre (or ‘higher speed on the hedonic treadmill’ if you feel especially cynical), socioeconomic status of gadfly targets, music participation, drama magnitude and quantity, spousal hobby overlap, patience with fools, making long-form content entertaining, refusal to go gently even toward a middlingly-long evening, and (even begrudging) respect of your peers.

    Oh, right.

    And The Spark.

    I won’t cheapen it by calling it just an art, because it’s also a craft, and “all it takes is all you got”, and it never doesn’t require the work.

    Sludgo is an optimist with a heartbreaking, achingly enviable gift for finding the positive. He is the better angel that is far from my nature.

    Tacos is a nihilist who, when not ourobourousing [choke on that, spellchecker] either hilariously deconstructs or lays out our fears in that baby-X/proto-Millenial way. He is perhaps the best of the worst of me.

    You, sir, are a realist even as a fantasist. You don’t flinch, you don’t pull punches (+1 SD on tact and timing…), and you acknowledge yourself as simultaneously your own best friend and worst enemy. There is NOTHING in all your writings to date that has not brought thoughtful reflection, new connections, deep emotions or simply joy at the ways you mash 26 letters around.

    All my life I’ve permitted copyright restrictions and analog/digital marketing to affect me precisely as much as the buzz of a fly – which is a diplomatic way of condensing pieces of a worldview marked at those extremes by Bill Hicks, RMS, and Jean Lafitte – but yet I am unexpectedly willing to penny-for-your-thoughts rather than continue without them while knowing that raw and polished alike, meaty, satisfying truths and fiction-from-truths are steadily incrementing.

    So yes, I will like, share with fellow souls where found, and subscribe to your mIRC OnlyFans. Just please continue to keep-alive your sense of humor in nonfiction a little more keenly than Eliezer Yudkowsky.

    Also if you happen to have read this far and in regards to your current situations, a couple apropos quotes from the British Bulldog who also never got to stop making the impossible happen, personally or professionally.

    “”When one writes things on paper to decide or explain large questions affecting action there is mental stress. But all this bites much deeper when you see and feel it on the spot. […] In these great matters failing to gain one’s way is no escape from the responsibility for an inferior solution.”

    “We may all pass our own conduct and our own judgements under a searching review. It is not given to human beings to foresee or predict to any large extent the unfolding course of events. In one phase men seem to have been right, in another they seem to have been wrong. Then again, a few years later, when the perspective of time has lengthened, all stands in a different setting. There is a new proportion. There is another scale of values. […] What is the worth of all this? The only guide to a man is his conscience; the only shield to his memory is the rectitude and sincerity of his actions. It is very imprudent to walk through life without this shield, because we are so often mocked by the failure of our hopes and the upsetting of our calculations; but with this shield, however the Fates may play, we march always in the ranks of honour.”

    May you gain the long-tail income stream you have so consistently fucking EARNED.

    *Enough so to have a driveshaft-through-the-skull shirt from both runs and pass along some transgressive ideas of very fast left turns in a pickle to the next generation(s).

      • Kevin Flynn

        It would be a singular honor. Also a welcome relief to my coworkers should the searing Cohesive Strategic Thinking of Low-Filter Sauron divert its obscure and terrible typing in another direction.

        HMU if you like. Life so far has been really quite unusually (-1SD…) Interesting, I exist as my most authentic self in the written word, fictional or not, and can switch from 5k words/day of email to 250k words of collaborative creative writing (albeit in a couple months) at the drop of a time clock.

  153. KoR

    Been a reader for long enough that I have gone through a few different handles on here, read and eventually abandoned a few different pubications, and have seen your particular brand of writing evolve. Also have seen you grow ever-more politcally active in ways that I can’t quite keep up with. I’m an absolute non-entity so my opinion means little, but as another commenter posted on here, the stories you write — fictional, real, somehwere in between — tend to be your best work. Good enough that I would pay for the privilege of reading it, certainly.

    So long as the substack doesn’t devolve into a version of TPUSA but with more allusions to Faulkner and Steely Dan, I’m in.

  154. Ed Kowalik

    Started reading your articles at TTAC and found this site when you moved onto greener pastures. Registered to say sign me up!

  155. Doug

    Hope it works out. I look forward to reading some of the stories you were holding back because of potential controversy.

  156. Another dude in Seattle

    Paying for content? Online? In this day and age? Sign me on up!
    Having never contributed to any discussion, feel free to charge the enemy price. Bastions of great writing need support, and your well designed presentations of your thinking are all too rare. Thanks for all you’ve written, I’m looking forward to what’s next.

  157. Manbridge

    Being the lyrical sort, certain songs always come to mind at times like this….

    The kids couldn’t hurt Jack
    They tried and tried and tried
    They dropped things on his back
    And lied and lied and lied and lied and lied

    But they couldn’t stop Jack, or the waters lapping
    And they couldn’t prevent Jack from feeling happy

  158. Manbridge

    And from 1967….. (above is from 1968)

    Every day in the week I’m in a different city
    If I stay too long people try to pull me down
    They talk about me like a dog
    Talkin’ about the clothes I wear
    But they don’t realize they’re the ones who’s square

    And that’s why
    You can’t hold me down
    I don’t want to be down
    I gotta move

    Stone free do what I please
    Stone free to ride the breeze
    Stone free I can’t stay
    I got to got to got to get away

  159. Will E

    I pay for 3 authors on Locals.com. They run $5 to $7 per month. At any price less than $10/mo, I’m in.

    The funny thing is, I would never spend $10/mo for any mainstream journalism site. I’m willing to accept some blame in the downfall of media. Maybe if more people (including myself) were willing to subscribe, then the mags wouldn’t be so beholden to the advertisers. It’s just been a long time since I’ve had that “must see TV” feeling.

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      Everyone who has commented here is going to pay less than ten bucks a month, I guarantee it.

      Truthfully, the magazines have been advertiser-focused rather than subscription-focused since the days of Tom McCahill. The bread has always been buttered on that side. It’s nothing you did or did not do. That’s my opinion anyway.

      • SajivW

        Magazines pandering to advertisers is a universal issue. I’ve written for the entire population of local car magazines in my country (there have only ever been three, of which only the most Motor Trend-like one survives) and have been at the receiving end of advertisers’ wrath for telling the truth more than once.

        Jack, I assume something similar eventually happened at the insurance company as well? That’s really a shame because it was becoming quite a great destination, with so many interesting voices.

        Oh well, looking forward to the Substack.

    • sgeffe

      I’m the same way with our local newspaper, or ANY newspaper! The Toledo Blade, my local, is only good for wrapping fish anyway, and as someone born and raised in the Detroit area, I always liked to keep up with the Detroit News and Free Press, until they paywalled most of their content worth viewing, and the Blade starts asking to reach into your wallet after about four articles per day in their app, and you can’t even access their Web site! (They’ll probably start to make people pay to read the obituaries!)

      Five bucks a month is fine. Ten and up (like the Blade at $12.99)?! Not so much! If they would get that through their thick skins, they’d make more $$$ on volume!

  160. Tristan Yates

    Please sign me if it is not too late – I’ve commented a couple times but it was a few years ago. I’ve been reading your work since the TTAC days. Thanks, and good luck with the new substack.

  161. TheNorwegian

    I believe I have commented once or twice on this website a few years ago, although not too frequently. Your content has always been enjoyable, and I have been an avid reader since I first stumbled across one of your Lincoln Town Car articles in 2012.
    Unless it’s too late – please sign me up!

  162. GW

    I’m another longtime reader coming out of the shadows to say sign me up too.

    Your writing has always been entertaining and thought provoking. Can’t wait to see the unfiltered Jack.

  163. Stephen L

    Love your content, more of a lurker but rarely commenter. As the son of an English teacher and a newspaper editor I appreciate your prose and wit and the way you make me challenge my inherent beliefs. Sign me up!

  164. pny

    Been reading you for over ten years from Australia Jack. I’d be keen to be signed up too to be able to keep enjoying it. Cheers.

  165. David Cordier


    The pleasure I get from reading your articles is exceeded only by the pleasure I and my team mates have had on the 3-4 occasions you joined our Neon endurance racing team; formerly known as “Los Cerdes Voladores,” and now simply “NUCKINFUTZ.”

    As you know, I’m an old man… one of those who is now more commonly referred to as a “senior citizen.” My senior status seems to be accelerating at faster pace than you could ever hope your Radical could achieve. Despite all that I am not yet retired… just tired… but still pushing forward.

    All of this leads to a few questions that I need to ask.
    (1) Will your Substack publication be offering an AARP discount?
    (2) How about an AAA discount?
    (3) Well then, does that leave me to rely on my AA discount?
    Yes! (For those of you who do not know, in this case “AA”
    refers to Autonuts Anonymous.)

    Whatever the price, I should be able to scrape up the needed funds even it that means I need to give up my $9.95/month burial insurance. So, you can count on me as a definite maybe. Looking forward to my next Avoidable Contact.


  166. Caratacos

    Found you through TTAG/Farago when I was ~14, been “keeping tabs” ever since. I trust in your case the substack will not be a grift (RIP Saloforum…).

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      I hope to have a much lower price per word than the average Substacker, that’s for sure

  167. Phil Manhard

    Not lurking any longer. Signed up, will be very interested in the Substack expansion of some of the finest, most entertaining writing on the Internet. Forward!

  168. sn29

    Longtime lurker here who would like to continue to read your stuff on Substack. Will need instructions.

  169. Idaneck

    Will there be a swimsuit edition of Vodka McBigBra and a few other lovelies of the past 20 years? If so, I’d consider.

    As a side, thanks for getting me to consider buying more American-made items. Unlike John C, I’m not a fan of the chinesium 😛

  170. JRorty

    First time commenter here, but one who has been enjoying your work for a while. I think it all began with me stumbling on an article of yours about a Cutlass and I’ve been appreciative of the good humor, good knowledge and good values you’ve been sharing with readers ever since. Look forward to reading you on Substack.

  171. Ronnie Schreiber

    Almost 500 people saying they’d pony up $5-$10 a month with no social media or other promotion other than this post. I doubt $30-$60K/yr will cover your nut but it’s not a bad foundation.

  172. Ian Miller

    Please sign me up. I’m a reader not a commenter. I want to support you in this endeavor and I can’t wait to read the formerly edited, canceled, banned writings. Thank you.

  173. Terry

    Always enjoy your articles, although not necessarily agree with all your views. Please count me in.

  174. fvfvsix

    Tagged for the update – and to say that after having read your work for nearly the past decade and a half, you are one of the best to ever do it.

  175. Black Saabath

    They say that life’s a carousel
    Spinning fast, you’ve got to ride it well
    The world is full of kings and queens
    Who blind your eyes and steal your dreams


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