Michael Bloomberg was unfazed by news of Princess Diana’s tragic death, telling a friend in the immediate aftermath of her 1997 passing that it was “just one life” and the world would go on just the same.
Michael Bloomberg’s cold, heartless remarks, reported by the Washington Free Beacon for the first time, came during a 1999 interview with his alma mater, Johns Hopkins University.
Recalling his comments to a grieving friend who told him “life will never be the same again,” Bloomberg remarked, “Well, never the same again for Princess Diana, but everyone else went on.”
The former New York City mayor and current Democratic presidential candidate also recalled his reaction to the 1963 assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Both tragedies triggered widespread mourning, but not from Bloomberg, who considered the media coverage and emotional outpouring overblown and the events themselves relatively inconsequential. The Kennedy assassination has proven to be one of the most memorable events in modern history, with 95 percent of adults remembering exactly where they were when they heard the news, according to the Pew Research Center.
“It was like Princess Diana, in that everybody thought the world had changed, and the papers were full of it,” Bloomberg said of the Kennedy assassination, “but a week later people go back to their own work, their own lives, and there was nothing changed, no matter what anybody says.”
The billionaire businessman made the remarks in the course of an interview for an oral history project conducted by the historian Mame Warren. During the course of the 30-minute interview, Bloomberg recalled that his life on campus went on uninterrupted after Kennedy was shot on November 22, 1963—aside from the fact that his fraternity, Phi Kappa Psi, wasn’t getting back a deposit it put down for an appearance by singer James Brown.
“I remember in November I had planned a big fraternity dance in the gym, and we had spent all our budget hiring James Brown and the Flames to play, and then Kennedy got shot and we canceled the dance and couldn’t get our deposit back,” Bloomberg said. “Never got the deposit back.”
Kennedy, he added, “was not popular,” and is remembered positively today only because he was assassinated. “There were stories that he wouldn’t even get the Democratic nomination, much less get reelected,” Bloomberg said. “How quickly we forget.”
Bloomberg recalled that he was in the Hamptons the day Princess Diana died when a friend called him to the television to watch the news unfold and told him, “Nothing will ever be the same again, Princess Diana has died in a crash.”
“You know, it’s just one life,” Bloomberg recalled saying. “There’s a lot of people that died today.”
Why the sympathy Mike?
After Kobe Bryant, Kobe’s 13-year-old daughter, and 7 other people tragically lost their lives when Bryant’s helicopter crashed, Bloomberg sent out his, now we know, disingenuous condolence tweet.
The only thing that’s changed between then and now is Bloomberg’s running for President.
We are watching the news out of California with heavy hearts and thinking of the Bryants and all the families who are devastated by this terrible tragedy.
— Mike Bloomberg (@MikeBloomberg) January 27, 2020