Last week I finally saw The Iron Lady, the new movie about the life of Margaret Thatcher. Although Meryl Streep (nominated this morning for a Best Actress Oscar) was a triumph, the film was somewhat disappointing; a New York Times reviewer said it spent more time portraying Thatcher as “a widow and half-abandoned mother” than the political trailblazer she was.

There’s enough there for another blog post, but today I’ve been thinking about the movie’s title. The Soviets were the first to dub Thatcher the “iron lady” for …