"Wouldn't it be easier to change your name to Harold Comedy?"
If America didn't exist, Harold Pinter would have to invent it. The very over playwright last made a splash with an idiotic essay in Granta, famously calling the United States a "'rogue state' of colossal military and economic might" that has "without thought, without pause for reflection, without a moment of doubt, let alone shame, confirmed that it is a fully fledged, award-winning, gold-plated monster… has effectively declared war on the world [and] knows only one language—bombs and death."
I've always wondered whether the irritating inarticulateness of Pinter's characters was a real reflection of the author or an elaborate stylistic effect. (I still think "The Lover" is a pretty funny play.) This morning, the Wall Street Journal gives him space to provide an answer, in an otherwise unenlightening debate with playwright Arnold Wesker. Pinter also pulls off a rare literary feat—reciting an anti-war poem so bad it makes Lawrence Ferlinghetti's "Speak Out" sound like Wilfred Owen by comparison.