Remembering Charles Krauthammer, a man who shaped the views of a generation of conservatives


“I used to think Trump was an 11-year-old, an undeveloped schoolyard bully. I was off by about 10 years,” Krauthammer wrote in August 2016. “His needs are more primitive, an infantile hunger for approval and praise, a craving that can never be satisfied.”

“This is beyond narcissism,” the Fox News commentator concluded. And he should know. Unlike many of us who play pop psychiatrist on news shows and in newspaper columns, Krauthammer knew what he was talking about, having graduated from Harvard Medical School in 1975. This, despite being paralyzed by a diving accident in his first year. After graduation, Krauthammer became a psychiatrist and eventually contributed to the pioneering “Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders” in 1980. Still not content, the quadriplegic psychiatrist decided he wanted to become a political columnist. Krauthammer began writing for the Washington Post in 1985 and won the Pulitzer Prize a mere two years later.

Image: Charles Krauthammer
Charles Krauthammer in 1985 in Washington, DC.Ray Lustig / The Washington Post via Getty Images

I first became aware of Charles’ beautiful mind when I read a commencement address he delivered to McGill University, his undergraduate alma mater. His words had such an impact that I can still recall where I was when I read it, although nearly a quarter century has since elapsed. His words should serve as guidance to all slogging through our current political morass.

“Don’t lose your head,” he noted. “I’m speaking here of intellectual fashion, of the alarming regularity with which the chattering classes, that herd of independent minds, are swept away by the periodic enthusiasms that wash over the culture.“

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