Fighting Inflation

Ever wish you could whisper in the president's ear? Give him advice on issues plaguing the nation? Well, here's your chance to tell the world what you would do if you were president of the United States. Twice weekly, we'll ask our readers a question about an issue facing the nation and post your responses here.

Today's topic:

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke is promising that the central bank will remain vigilant in fighting inflation. The comments sent shock waves through financial markets hoping the Fed was about to call a cease-fire on interest rate increases. Instead, Bernanke's comments are likely to mean further increases in borrowing costs for consumers on their home and auto loans and credit card debt and for small businesses trying to raise money at their local bank. Read more.

If you were president, what steps would you take to prevent inflation?

Click on the links in the box on the right to read recent stories on this topic, then e-mail us at Check back during the day to read more responses from FOX Fans and to see if yours was posted.

Check out what FOX Fans are saying:

"I don't believe interest rates should be raised again as a curb tool for inflation. The Fed should know that the cost of energy (crude oil, natural gas) is what is driving up core costs. If they continue to raise rates, I believe it will cause an over correction (knee-jerk reaction) and could send us into a recession through driving the markets down, and decreasing consumer borrowing and spending." — Tom (Texas)

"How about abolishing the Federal Reserve and the paper money system once and for all?" — Jason (Canada)

"The lack of raw materials including brass, copper, steel and oil is the reason inflation is soaring. Everybody know how oil affects us, but the high cost of metal is mostly ignored. We are in a global crises as China is buying all the metal around the world. It pushes many finished goods prices higher. Consumer product costs are being forced higher daily. The president needs to convince the Fed. chairman not to raise short term interest rates as the inflation is global situation and not related to the cost of short term borrowing rates. Also, the dormant copper and ore mines need to be reopened to ease the shortage in Asia. Last, oil fields still need to be producing crude oil. Oil prices push up costs on consumer products." — Richard

"I would raise taxes to eliminate the national debt. The dollar would become insanely powerful." — Alvin (Greenville, NC)

"I would replace the Federal Reserve chairman and beg Greenspan to come back." — David (Port Ludlow, WA)

"Normally price caps are bad economic news. I would however place a $1.75 per gallon price cap on regular unleaded gas. More money would stay in the pockets of hard working Americans and businesses. Spread the wealth based on what you can do and not who has the oil. Making a profit is one thing the gas companies are commiting rape." — Rob

"The best way to slow inflation is to curb run away government spending and balance the budget. Our representatives are only in office to keep office. Republicans and Democrats should join forces and vote all of our representatives out in the upcoming primary elections. Spare no one for any reason." — Daniel (Tulsa, OK)

"If I were president, I would ask myself why the United States spent $27.457 billion on foreign aid in 2005. To fight inflation, I would stop ALL foreign aid for 1 year. Redirect that $27 billion into the U.S. population. With a population of 295 million it roughly works out to around $92 million per person. Who would care about inflation when each person just pocketed 92 million dollars?" — Chris (Indiana)

”I would cut the federal budget immediately to reduce the money supply, followed quickly with the elimination of all taxes on interest earned in simple savings accounts. Hopefully this would further reduce the money supply and lower the inflation rate.” — Tom (St. Louis, MI)

”I would have a meeting of all the major business CEO's and ask them to try to limit any price increases on products and services. Then, I would use the ‘bully pulpit’ of the presidency to make similar anti-inflation speeches to the American population. One of the key responsibilities of government is to maintain a stable currency value so that people can plan for their economic future. Any time government lowers the value of the currency by printing unlimited amounts of money, it destroys long-term financial planning by individuals and lowers the value of the currency. Government does NOT create wealth: individuals and corporations do that.” — James (Urbandale, IA)

”If I were president, I would extend the declaration of war. Doing this should put a curb on government spending with the exception of spending on homeland security. I would demand that reforms be made to the Internal Revenue Service and Social Security. I would push for a constitutional amendment for a balanced budget with a line item veto with exception for National security. Free speech is wonderful, but responsibility comes with this freedom.” — William

”I am far from being an economy expert but I believe today's inflation fear is mostly due to the increase in prices in gasoline. So, I probably would not do much to correct it because I’d be afraid to bring the markets down, as happened several years ago.” — Eduardo (Houston, TX)

”There are many minor things the government can do to affect inflation, but in the end, they can't really control it. You can tweak interest rates (as they're doing now), alter banking laws, or change the tax code, but again, any effort to put more money in peoples' pockets will be seen by big business as an excuse to raise prices and to acquire that extra money. The only thing that will control this is promoting greater and fairer competition that will force prices back down.” — Mike (Derry, NH)

” It is well known that excessive deficit spending causes inflation. Therefore, the country has to get closer to a balanced budget. There are two alternatives: decrease the war effort, or raise taxes to pay for our military action. Since we can't get out of Iraq gracefully, the president should impose energy taxes on the consumer, to encourage conservation, and on the oil companies, to discourage excess profits. Regarding spending, it is well known that a wartime economy increases employment, and results in added tax revenues. Therefore, the president should increase the size of the military to anticipate a war effort against Iran, Syria, or North Korea. To support his doctrine of military action against supporters of terrorism, he should initiate a military draft.” — James

"The president and the Federal Reserve fail to link the rise in oil prices with the rise in inflation. Since petroleum impacts virtually everything we touch (from raw materials or the shipping that gets it to market) it is like a tax on the economy. The Federal Reserve raising interest rates in order to curtail spending and thus avoid inflation amounts to a double whammy on the economy. It doesn’t take an Ivy league-educated economist to see that the root cause of the impending economic disaster is high oil prices and to see that the trickle down effect that they have on everything else.” — Andy (New York, NY)

”The biggest problem is energy prices. Supposedly, energy prices are excluded from the equation, but in reality they are not. The higher energy prices end up increasing costs for consumer goods, which results in inflation. The status quo from economists and the Federal Reserve is that you curb inflation by increasing the interest rate. Standard economics, according to the anomaly we have been seeing in recent years, does not play out in textbook terms. For way too long, we have been lucky in the U.S., riding the low cost manufacturing wave, but even China has to pay the increased price for oil, which results in higher prices, and thus inflation. I don't think that this anomaly in economic models can be addressed by raising interest rates again.” — Dave (Houston, TX)

”I would bring the domestic exploration and development of refinery to the forefront and push Congress to act. I would expose the failure of Congress to act on this as political demagoguery at its most basic form and not in the best interest of the American people.” — Daniel

”A more efficient public sector would go a long way to reduce inflation pressures and needless government expenses that work their way into higher prices for everything. As president, I would start with the complete elimination of the departments of commerce, labor, and education.” — Douglas

”As president, I would quit trying to control inflation with interest rates. Inflation soars when the interest rates go back down.” — Russ

”As president, I'd fire Bernanke since he's doing damage to the economy. I would stop giving money to all the other nations. I would quit and work for the oil company.” — Nick (New Jersey)

”If I were president, I would do what Bush does not have the will or guts to do. That would be to raise taxes on the rich in order to soak up some of the cash that they have. Secondly, I would stop the deficit spending that is flooding our economy with cash. Bush has racked up almost $3 trillion of deficit spending in just five and a half years and it needs to stop. By taking these two steps the economy will cool a bit and with it the fear of further inflation.” — Charles

"Abolish the Federal Reserve central banking system and return to the gold standard. Problem solved." — Jason

"Absolutely nothing. The more the government gets involved in anything, the more messed up it gets!" — Sea (Westminster, CO)

"One crucial step to curb inflation is to STOP the Federal Reserve chairman from speaking haphazardly and without calculated thought about the economy. The one way to ensure inflation is to simply keep talking about it as if it is already in full swing." — Chris (Scottsdale, AZ)

"Taking money from the consumer in higher rates and giving that money to the bank does not help inflation — it makes bankers richer! Changing the tax laws to allow more funds to stay here and not go overseas would be a better way to fight inflation." — George

"We would have more money if we would tighten our borders and prohibit people from coming in and using up our resources. The illegals come across the borders, and we have refugee camps in this country and companies hiring them. The women are pregnant and our healthcare system gives them free care. Our healthcare costs would be lower if the illegals weren't coming in at all, let alone with health issues." — Kathy

"I would encourage Congress to repeal the Federal Reserve Act of 1913. It's an unconstitutional act in itself because the Constitution says that Congress is the only body that can coin money. It was then sold to America as a tool to stabilize the currency flow in America. As we all know from history, this hasn't been accomplished by the evidence of one depression and numerous recessions." — Kenny

"As president, I would put gas back at $1.65 per gallon and put fuel back at $1.60 per gallon. Also, put the interest rate back equivalent to a one-year CD paying 6 percent interest. Leave those two things alone and the economy will fix itself. I would also give Iran 30 days to stop the nuclear research and then I would tell OPEC to keep oil production at 100 percent so we can keep the price of gas at $1.65 per gallon. If OPEC's 100 percent output is not enough, them mobilize all our resources to drill more oil." — Doug

"As president, the first thing I would do is to inform the masses that they don't understand the definition of inflation. Inflation is the devaluation of a currency. Inflation is not rising prices. Rising prices are a symptom. The Federal Reserve adjusting the interest rate is a symptom control to prevent runaway inflation. The only way to truly stop inflation is to teach ethics to our lawmakers. Once that is complete, then perhaps the government will stop printing money to pay for projects they can't afford. NOTE: All governments inflate, and all parties inflate." — Jake (Virginia)

"I would fight inflation by removing its root causes. I would remove our troops from Iraq. President Bush took office with the largest potential surplus and his political agenda and faulty leadership turned it into the largest national debt. I would cap the profits of the huge oil companies. It's obvious that Bush owes his allegiance to big monopolies like oil and not to the taxpayers. The big three oil companies have profited $33.6 billion over the past three years alone and, if left unchecked, that number will continue to rise, as have prices at the pump. Furthermore, the fact that Bush would not sign the Kyoto global warming agreement was another result stemming from petrodollar pressure. I would rescind the tax cut and pay down our national debt. In reality, it only favors the richest segment of the population." — Albert (New York)

"Mr. President, please don't do anything to try and stem our most recent minor inflation 'blip.' Leave the micro-management of our economy to newspaper editors. They know best." — DJ (Virginia)

"I would focus on the one force driving inflation — energy! Let's get stability in Iraq and get Iraqi crude flooding the markets. Add a little peace in the Middle East and progress with Iran, and our price per gallon would drop by about $1.50, thus increasing consumer confidence and easing this ever-growing energy crunch. Easier said than done, of course!" — Stan (Philadelphia, PA)

"Simple: STOP raising rates every time Bernanke and his crew meet. Skip it once and see what the economy does in response. For corporations, money is getting expensive to borrow again, which in turn slows job growth. Ease up on the rate and see what happens." — Andrew

"The president's power in this area is limited to vetoing excessive spending." — Bob

"I would do nothing, or more precisely, I would make the government able to do nothing. I'd fire Bernanke and get rid of the Federal Reserve. I would also reinstitute the gold standard. The Federal Reserve has done more damage to the American economy over the years than almost any tax raise our wonderful politicians have. Time has shown over and over again that the markets work best and correct problems faster when they are left alone. I would reinstitute the gold standard because no matter what anyone tells you, the U.S. dollar is actually worthless without it. Without the gold standard, our money is just paper backed by estimates written on more paper, and we all know what government estimates are worth. Can you say, 'Zip, zilch, nada?'" — Nate (Garyville, LA)

"I'd immediately fire Bernanke. He's doing more damage to the economy than bin Laden ever could." — George

"I would let Bernanke do his job, and tell people to stop blaming people for things they have little control over." — Brent

"One thing I would try to do is change the federal budget rules that prohibit the bureaucrats from being frugal with the taxpayers' money. The budget rules are designed to force the budget to expand each year since department managers must spend every penny allocated or lose their budget for the next fiscal year. Changing the rules would allow the government to operate more like a business by getting the maximum value for every penny spent, instead of having to spend every penny." — Cullom (Albuquerque, NM)

"If I were president, I would not take any steps to fight inflation. I would leave that up to the Central Bank and hope I have the right man running it. I think once a president gets involved in economic policy you have a serious conflict of interest between elected officials and economic interdependence. This country needs to stop blaming every little thing that goes wrong on the guy in the top spot and start blaming their elected officials on the local level for not doing their jobs." — Tim (Westchester, PA)

"I would take steps to encourage Americans to save more and consume less. This would reduce demand and slow down inflation. These steps could include:
1. Increasing the amount of interest people receive from savings accounts (banks would need an incentive also), government bonds, etc.
2. Public service announcements that emphasize the importance of saving instead of borrowing.
3. Increase the sales tax a person pays when they borrow the money vs. paying with cash or the equivalent." — John (NC)

"At the current time, sky high ENERGY costs are the main components of the current inflation spike. High energy costs are now trickling down to EVERY product and service. Increasing the federal interest rate does absolutely nothing to curb energy prices. It only adds to our burden. My solution: get off your high horse and start drilling for oil in the U.S., conserve energy, increase alternative energy sources tenfold, and build at least 50 new refineries." — Rick

"I would make interest rates lower. It is a big lie to say that high interest rates control inflation. If rates are higher, businesses have to spend more money paying off the rate and less money to spend on the business. Also they would borrow less to expand their business activity. Rising interest rates to fight inflation is the biggest lie that the Federal Reserve has used for many years. I am not an economist, just a common-sensed, ordinary person. Tell me: If I make a dollar and somehow I ending up paying 50% on taxes and 15% interest, and the rest in bills, and I have to keep borrowing to pay the bills, then why work?" — Angel (VA)