Wednesday, April 10, 2013

A "Delightful" Dinner with The Iron Lady

In 1995, I had the distinct pleasure and honor to dine with the longest-serving and, dare I say, most impactful British Prime Minister of the 20th century.

I'm not talking about dining in the same building mind you. I'm talking about dining at the same table.

The conversation was fun, at times deep, and even went so far as to push me back in my chair a bit with the candor she displayed regarding her "replacement." Those comments were of course, private.

At the time, believe it or not, getting Atlas Shrugged made into a movie was at the top of my priority list. There were other things on that list too but, as you can imagine, Atlas was pretty high up there. As a result, the upcoming film managed to make its way into the conversation with a fair amount of fervor.

And, she was into it.

Before the night ended, rolling the dice, I told Mrs. Thatcher that I would be honored to have her attend the Atlas Shrugged Movie Premiere. In my mind, I would fly her in on a private jet, put her up in the finest hotel, the whole nine. It would be be epic.

I'll never forget her response.

With her famously unique cadence and delivery, responding in the way only she could - as if each syllable had its own period attached - she looked at me and ardently said, "I would be delighted."

It would be 15+ years before the night of the World Premiere of Atlas Shrugged Part I would arrive and, unfortunately, a few years too late. Mrs. Thatcher had already stopped traveling and had to decline.

Oh, but what a glorious moment it would have been.

In 1995, I had the distinct pleasure and honor to dine with the longest-serving, most impactful, British Prime Minister of the 20th century - who, not surprisingly, also happened to be quite the fan of Atlas Shrugged.

Margaret Thatcher was an inspiration, a political power house, and bigger than life. I'm pleased to have made her acquaintance and perhaps more pleased to have discussed with her Atlas Shrugged.

I was... delighted.

From left to right: Joan Carter, Margaret Thatcher, and John Aglialoro


  1. What a wonderful story. I did not realize that she was an Ayn Rand fan but I am not surprised. She left us with her words of wisdom and cultural changes that could only be accomplished by rational thinking, vision and great leadership. We will all miss her.

  2. Hi John. Nice to join your Blog and follow your thoughts on Ayn Rand and Atlas Shrugged. Ironic is it not how two women, in a millenium of male chauvinism, or dominate male thinking, so dominated thought and politics. It certainly proves the power - and indelible influence - of the individual verses the many. Keep up the great work. Steve Eggleston

  3. Mr Eggman, I can't help but think that neither of the women concerned would share your views. I think the chauvinism they were more worried about was that of the altruists rather than that of the male. They would no more appreciate a female altruist than they would revel in a fellow female capitalist. To them both, a person's philosophy was infinitely more important than their gender - as it should always be.

    It is only in these sad days that we allow issues of gender to get in the way of the far more important issues.

    1. To NickyBics,
      Very well said, I truly like your commentary from April 11 and 12.