It's funny you say, "there is no free lunch" when nobody asked for anything for free. The point being made was that, objectively speaking, many of the younger employees DO work harder, DO work smarter and get stonewalled by insecure middle and upper management...while they utilize nepotism, and social capital to trump quantitatively measurable productivity.
Notice how the people who say things like, "there is no free lunch" try to change the narrative, from pointing out obvious slackers who have ALLOWES themselves to get too settled into their cushioned positions, to younger people wanting free promotion, equity and compensation. Instead of acknowledging that, yeah, maybe people at AIG, especially those who are most afraid of losing their jobs and being found out as a bunch of lazy, bare-minimim valuing, incompetents, they shift the blame to young people using straw man and red-herring arguements and fallacies.
That statement (below), alone, proves the whole point being made about stonewalling talented and analytical employees at the cost of lazy, older, employees with stale skills and even more stale leadership ability