Video: The Budget Chef

No, this isn’t Julia Child — it’s Nick Gillespie from Reason TV, offering kitchen advice on what to do with pork over the next ten years.  How do you trim a budget in order to ensure that dinner doesn’t come buried in debt gravy?  Cut the fat and leave the meat, and watch as the pork gravy stops flowing:

Using only a big piece of pork, a large knife, and a small knife, the budget chef shows how to balance the federal budget by 2020.

As a special treat, he does it without raising taxes from the current Bush-era rates!

It seems like a complicated preparation at first, but it’s so simple that almost any elected official should be able to pull it off like a pro!

Domestic and foreign investors will love this, and it will also help create a stable environment conducive to long-term, sustainable economic growth.

Between 2011 and 2020, the Congressional Budget Office estimates that total federal outlays – for defense, agriculture subsidies, Medicare, Social Security, you name it – will total a whopping $42.1 trillion (in 2010 dollars). To bring outlays down to revenue, we need to cut a total of $1.3 trillion in total expenditures over the next 10 years.

That sounds like a really tall order until you realize that it cutting just 3.6 percent a year for each of the next 10 years. To put it in dollar terms, it means cutting about $130 billion a year from budgets that will average over $4 trillion. That’s not so hard now, is it? By making small, systematic cuts to a federal budget that is larded up with more fat than an Ponderosa buffet, we can balance the budget without even nicking essential services.

I’ve never seen anyone cook in a leather jacket before. It’s worth a watch just to see Nick in a white chef’s hat.

The point is well taken, though, and Reason TV actually avoids juicing it up. We don’t need new revenue streams to solve the problem of deficit spending; we need to curtail spending after a massive increase over the past three years (38% growth in annual budgets) and decade (around 55% growth). The simplest recipes are often the best.

Update: Kevin Williamson says that trimming $1.3 trillion in ten years will help, but it’s not enough to solve the problem.  (h/t: Dustin Siggins)