Bryan Caplan  

There's No Such Thing as a Free Vegan Lunch

Hide this from Robin Hanson... Works in Practice, Just Not in...

Who says there's no such thing as a free lunch? At least in downtown D.C., they're not hard to find. Just go to a reception at a think tank and chow down. But this is not without its hazards, as one guy learned at my Cato talk:

As I wait, what seemed like years in the long buffet style line, I discovered that lunch translated over to heavily-packed animal flesh sandwiches + chips! So I wait for the next tray. More slaughter sandwiches! “Excuse me, are there any vegan options?” I ask the help. “Not sure let me check” Five minutes past.[sic] “Here you are”. A cucumber wrap LOADED with cheese. “I’m sorry, anything without cheese” I begged. “Just pick it off, that’s all we have!” Only at the CATO Institute.
Hmm, does this mean that if I become a vegan, I can count on a free lunch wherever I go, as long as I avoid the Cato Institute?

I've long worried that free lunches at libertarian events send the wrong message. But it's worse than I realized. Not only do free lunches undermine the message that "There's no such things as a free lunch"; they even make people forget the far more basic lesson that "Beggars can't be choosers."

Comments and Sharing

COMMENTS (6 to date)
Scott Scheule writes:

I often get Vegan meals at Cato--but that's because I'm not a silly hippie.

sourcreamus writes:

Whining about a free lunch!? I can not be the only person making judgements about this person's politics based on this post.
BTW, Caplan's answer was much better than this guy says it was.

Felix writes:

Say, I'll be in DC next week. Where and when, precisely, can a tourist get these free lunches, there in the center of the free lunch universe?!?

FC writes:

Mmm, slaughter sandwiches...

Unit writes:


your Cato Talk is quite possibly your best interview ever (so far).

Jeremy writes:

The vegan who wrote this post walked into the forum well after Caplan had spoke, only caught part of Keeter's discussion, and spent most of the time he was there trying to check his email (even though he couldn't connect to a network).

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