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More on ‘Coruscating Intelligence’


Reader Joe writes:

Re: “Note to Erin Aubry Kaplan: Nine-dollar words such as coruscating are more impressive when you spell them correctly.”

This calls to mind a JFK quote, from Ben Bradlee’s hagiography, if I’m not mistaken.  Some of the New Frontiersmen were starting to believe their own press, and one in particular relished some journalist’s description of the Kennedy brain trust as “coruscatingly brilliant.”  The new president snorted and said, “They keep forgetting that a few thousand votes the other way and they’d all be coruscatingly stupid.” 

It’s been widely noted around National Review that once a conservative is dead (or neutered) the liberals start suddenly remembering how great it was when there were such decent, honorable, intelligent, visionary men on the Right — remember how those old Reagan-haters suddenly found it convenient to use the Gipper as a cudgel against George W. Bush. We should resist indulging in similar habits, but imagining JFK in a room with Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi puts things in perspective. Obama has a little of JFK’s style — he should look into JFK’s tax program, too.


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