I'm happy to see TV/film/stage scribe Aaron Sorkin make it onto Alex Pareene's hack list. Here's the opener:
Aaron Sorkin is why people hate liberals. He's a smug, condescending know-it-all who isn't as smart as he thinks he is. His feints toward open-mindedness are transparently phony, he mistakes his opinion for common sense, and he's preachy. Sorkin has spent years fueling the delusional self-regard of well-educated liberals. He might be more responsible than anyone else for the anti-democratic "everyone would agree with us if they weren't all so stupid" attitude of the contemporary progressive movement. And age is not improving him.
More moments worth quoting:
• "His characters always say exactly, precisely what they mean, at all times. There's no subtext, no irony, nothing ever left unspoken in his dialogue. His characters don't even get to be sarcastic without someone asking them if they're being sarcastic. Everyone alternates between speechifying, quipping and dumbly setting up other people's quips. It's exhausting."
• "Sorkin fit the broad details of Mark Zuckerberg's life and Facebook's founding into the only sort of story he is interested in and able to tell. It's well and good to say Sorkin's sole responsibility is to entertain, but I think an obnoxious little Sorkin analogue character would probably look askance at some Hollywood screenwriter who took such liberties with the truth in the service of disposable entertainment. (On the other hand, the moral responsibilities of an artist dealing with real-world material is maybe the sort of question too thorny for Sorkin's paper-thin characters to dispense with in a quick Act 3 speech.)"
• "'He humiliated congressional candidates on my network,' she says at Sam Waterston, as if that were a thing someone who owned a cable news network would be mad about."
• "A dumb girl (dumb girls are this show's primary villains) asks what makes America the greatest country in the world, which is the sort of question asked only by Sean Hannity, and Daniels says that it's not: not just because of our poor infant mortality rate but also (and much more importantly) because as a society we no longer revere 'great men.' This is the same idiotic nostalgia that inspires your typical David Brooks column."