I had always heard that Jimmy Carter was the smartest recent president IQ-wise. It never made much sense to me, but heck, you can't always tell from afar. His intelligence was even put forward as part of the reason he was ineffective as a president - a lack of trust of others, and unwillingness to delegate, because he worried they wouldn't do it as well as he would.
He had been a nuclear engineer on a submarine in the navy, they said. Well, that certainly sounds like someone with more than an average number of gray cells. So I guess that's it then. All that nuclear stuff is complicated, and engineering is a difficult field. Case closed, right?
I always thought it unusual that he wasn't more pro-nuclear power, being in the field and all, but I figured maybe he knew something I should be aware of. Or something.
Last week I learned what Paul Harvey would say is "The rest. Of the story." It's that nuclear engineer part. The word engineer is kinda funny in English. A train has an engineer, and it's a decent job, but no one thinks of them as - snicker - real engineers.
Jimmy Carter was that kind of engineer. He was in charge of driving the submarine. After being the engineer of a non-nuclear submarine, he took a course so he could drive nuclear subs.