The Great Gatsby

The Great Gatsby, he could afford to

I'd like to know if "he could afford to" in the following excerpt from the chapter Seven of The Great Gatsby means "he could allow himself to" or rather "he succeeded in", "managed to":

“You don’t understand,” said Gatsby, with a touch of panic. “You’re not going to take care of her any more.”

“I’m not?” Tom opened his eyes wide and laughed. He could afford to control himself now. “Why’s that?”

Thank you.

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"he could allow himself to" Tom is trying to control himself over his heated exchange with Gatsby.