Arlo Guthrie Says TANSTAAFL
By David Henderson
New York Times interviewer: You’re giving a free evening concert in New York this Thursday, July 30, at Battery Park.
Arlo Guthrie: Free to the public. It doesn’t mean I’m doing it for free.
In almost every economics course I teach, I start with “The 10 Pillars of Economic Wisdom.” (If you go to the link, be aware that I’ve updated Pillar 5. It now reads, “Information is valuable and costly, and inherently decentralized.) Pillar 1 is TANSTAAFL (There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch.) In the above snippet from the NYT interview, Arlo Guthrie reminds us of that. The whole (short) interview is worth reading.
Interestingly, Arlo is politically very different from his father Woody. Check out the following song, with the lyrics here, for Woody’s pretty nasty attack on Charles Lindbergh, Herbert Hoover, and John L. Lewis, among others, all skeptics or opponents of the U.S. entering World War II before Peal Harbor. Guthrie pere hits below the belt, accusing Lindbergh of colluding with the Japanese government, even though he favored America’s war with Japan after the bombing of Pearl Harbor.