$ by default tends to clash with other libraries. CakePHP of course has code to deal with this, only is not publicly mentioned how to do it. I spent around 5 hours to discover how, and here it goes drum roll
When you look at the code using firebug, you would now see the jQueryObject changed to
$j. I’ve suggested a section to the book for this and I’ve also modified some of the documents for stuff that I found helpful.