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Who Should Run the Fed?

Regarding the opinion-page column "Private Interests Should Not Make Public Policy," Sept. 27: Restricting monetary policy decisionmaking solely to appointed officials sounds good in theory; in practice it would be folly.The primary dilemma arises over goals. Elected officials worry more about jobs than they do about inflation. Bankers, on the other hand, worry more about inflation than they do about jobs. Unless appointed officials are given clear mandates by law that their main job is to fight inflation, it is likely that they will follow the path of least resistance - by expanding the money supply. Have we not discovered that poor people empowered by owning their own homes will take better care of the neighborhood? Similarly, bankers who have a personal stake in fighting inflation will be far more effective at this task than political appointees. Jonathan B. Wight, Richmond, Va. Department of Economics, Univ. of Richmond

The legacy of Reaganomics In the article "A Participant Looks at the Pros and Cons of Reaganomics," Oct. 8, the author seems to minimize or omit some very important cons. In particular, he makes no reference to the large-scale shifting of wealth from the poorer people (and from future generations) to the wealthier people, nor the disheartening upsurge of greed among the wealthy. Where he thinks the Reaganomics legacy is fascinating, I find it appalling and revolting. Edward J. Porto, Evanston, Ill.

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International aid for republics I find myself in complete agreement with the opinion-page column "How Best to Aid the Republics," Oct. 1. The Soviet republics must be aided if they are to have a chance at survival, but why should the US, one of the world's largest debtors, lead the way in providing aid? Why shouldn't the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank take the reins as financial overseers of the reconstructing republics? This would have the benefit of avoiding actions that might be interpreted as US intervention and of including other Western countries. This much is needed, since no one country can take on this program alone. Ryan Keaton, Florence, Ala.