“I think I would have done very well, as a writer, in the forties,” [Sorkin] says. “I think the last time America was a great country was then, or not long after. It was before Vietnam, before Watergate.”
Coates thought Sorkin, in the interview, was insensitive to victims of segregation and “gender repression” back in the ’40s. He scolded Sorkin for extolling a great era that never existed, and for expressing “attendant notions that the internet [has] ruined everything.”
What a crock. In the interview, Sorkin betrayed a nostalgic streak and apparent insecurities about the quality of his work. But I’m still trying to figure out what it is about him and his new HBO show, The Newsroom, that so deeply offended Coates and the many Sorkin non-fans who posted comments on Coates’ site.
They all seemed to miss the main points Sorkin made in the first episode of his new show, especially in the initial rant about America’s decline, delivered by Jeff Daniels, playing (at least in this scene) a latter-day Howard Beale.