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  • 雷蒙特卡佛生平与他的作品

    2011-8-21

    Raymond Carver, surely the most influential writer of American short stories in the second half of the 20th century, makes an early appearance in Carol Sklenicka’s exhaustive and sometimes exhausting biography as a 3- or 4-year-old on a leash. “Well, of course I had to keep him on a leash,” his mother, Ella Carver, said much later — and seemingly without irony.

    Maryann Burk Carver and Raymond Carver in 1972.

    当然,雷蒙特.卡佛是20世纪下半叶是最有影响力的美国短篇小说家, 早期出现在卡罗尔斯科伦利卡的详尽有时又穷尽的自传里, 自传里卡佛是一个套着狗链的3-4孩童。“哦,当然我不得不把他套在狗链上,”他母亲,爱勒-卡佛,在她晚年时候说—语气好像不带讽刺意味。

    1972年玛洋-伯克-卡佛和雷蒙德-卡佛。

     

    Mrs. Carver might have had the right idea. Like the perplexed lower-middle-class juicers who populate his stories, Carver never seemed to know where he was or why he was there. I was constantly reminded of a passage in Peter Straub’s “Ghost Story”: “The man just drove, distracted by this endless soap opera of America’s bottom dogs.”

    卡佛先生可能有过好的思想。就像困惑的中下层的酒鬼在编造故事一样,卡佛似乎从来不知道他身处何处,为何会在那里。彼得-斯德伯的“鬼故事”里有段话经常提醒我,“一个正常驾驶的男人,由于美国底层小人物胡编瞎造的无穷无尽的肥皂剧影响而偏离航向。

    Born in Oregon in 1938, Carver soon moved with his family to Yakima, Wash. In 1956, the Car­vers relocated to Chester, Calif. A year later, Carver and a couple of friends were carousing[Michael1]  in Mexico. After that the moves accelerated: Paradise, Calif.; Chico, Calif.; Iowa City, Sacramento, Palo Alto, Tel Aviv, San Jose, Santa Cruz, Cupertino, Humboldt County . . . and that takes us up only to 1977, the year Carver took his last drink.

    卡佛1938年出生在奥尔良,不久随家庭搬到了华盛顿的雅克玛。1956年卡佛一家再次搬到了加利佛尼亚的切斯特。一年后,卡佛和几个朋友在墨西哥酗酒狂欢。之后,很快又去了很多地方,加州的帕拉代斯,芝加哥,又加州,爱荷华城,萨克垃曼多,帕拉阿耳托,德尔阿维维,圣何塞,桑特克鲁兹,库柏提诺,洪保德郡一直到1977年,那年卡佛最后一次喝酒。

    Through most of those early years of restless travel, he dragged his two children and his long-suffering wife, Maryann, the mostly unsung heroine of Sklenicka’s tale, behind him like tin cans tied to the bumper of a jalopy[Michael2]  that no car dealer in his right mind would take in trade. It’s no wonder that his friends nicknamed him Running Dog. Or that when his mother took him into downtown Yakima, she kept him on a leash.

    在早年不断的旅行中,他带着他的两个孩子和他那长期受苦的妻子,玛丽雅恩。玛丽雅恩在卡罗尔斯科伦利卡的故事中是一个没有受到称颂的女主人公。她在卡佛身后就像一个依靠在破旧不堪的车上缓冲垫上的锡盒一样,没有哪一个清醒的汽车经销商会拿来做交易。这也难怪,卡佛的朋友戏称他为“流浪狗”。要不然母亲把他带到雅克玛城中心去时,把他套在狗链上。

    As brilliant and talented as he was, Ray Carver was also the destructive, ­everything-in-the-pot kind of drinker who hits bottom, then starts burrowing deeper. Longtime A.A.’s know that drunks like Carver are master practitioners of the geographical cure, refusing to recognize that if you put an out-of-control boozer on a plane in California, an out-of-control boozer is going to get off in Chicago. Or Iowa. Or Mexico.

    -卡佛尽管很有出色且有天赋,但也是个祸害他人的家伙,经常喝得酩酊大醉,栽倒在地上开始挖洞。时间一久,禁酒协会知道像卡佛这样的醉鬼是掌握了地理疗法,并拒绝同意在加州的飞机上不受管制的酗酒者,不受管制的酗酒者在芝加哥,爱荷华,或墨西哥州就得下机。

    And until mid-1977, Raymond Carver was out of control. While teaching at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, he and John Cheever became drinking buddies. “He and I did nothing but drink,” Carver said of the fall semester of 1973. “I don’t think either of us ever took the covers off our typewriters.” Because Cheever had no car, Carver provided transportation on their twice-weekly booze runs. They liked to arrive at the liquor store just as the clerk was unlocking for the day. Cheever noted in his journal that Carver was “a very kind man.” He was also an irresponsible boozehound who habitually ran out on the check in restaurants, even though he must have known it was the waitress who had to pay the bill for such dine-and-dash customers. His wife, after all, often waited tables to support him.

    1977年中期雷蒙德-卡佛失去控制,在爱荷华的作家研习会里教书时,他和约翰-坼佛成了经常在一起喝酒的朋友。卡佛在1973年秋说过,“他和约翰在一起就是喝酒,我认为我们俩都不会打开我们打字机的盖子的”。由于坼佛没有车,卡佛会在他们两周一次的聚会喝酒中送他一程。他们喜欢在店员一天中一开门营汪就到达酒馆。坼佛在他的日记中说:卡佛是个“很善良的人”。但同时也是个不负责任的酗酒者,经常习惯跑出去到饭店的柜台去用支票付帐,即使他知道女招待一定会要求顾客对这促消费付现。毕竟,他的妻子经常会在桌旁替他解围。

    It was Maryann Burk Carver who won the bread in those early years while Ray drank, fished, went to school and began writing the stories that a generation of critics and teachers would miscategorize as “minimalism” or “dirty realism.” Writing talent often runs on its own clean circuit (as the Library of America’s “Raymond Carver: Collected Stories” attests), but writers whose works shine with insight and mystery are often prosaic monsters at home.

    在雷蒙德早年酗酒时,钓鱼时,去学校开始写他的小说时,是玛丽雅恩来挣钱养家的。而他写的小说,被一代评论家,老师误归为“最低纲领”或是“肮脏现实主义”。他定作的才华可以在自己干净的思路中畅游(这在美国图书馆中的“雷蒙德-卡佛:故事集”中可以考证)但作者的作品依然闪耀着深刻的洞察力,神秘主义色彩,通常有我们所熟悉的怪物。

    Maryann Burk met the love of her life — or her nemesis; Carver appears to have been both — in 1955, while working the counter of a Spudnut Shop in Union Gap, Wash. She was 14. When she and Carver married in 1957, she was two months shy of her 17th birthday and pregnant. Before turning 18, she discovered she was pregnant again. For the next quarter-century she supported Ray as a cocktail waitress, a restaurant hostess, an encyclopedia saleswoman and a teacher. Early in the marriage she packed fruit for two weeks in order to buy him his first typewriter.

    玛丽雅恩-伯克遇上了她一生的爱人或者说是她的苦难根源;而卡佛似乎就是二者。1955年,玛丽雅恩14岁,当时在华盛顿的联盟沟壑的斯布当那商店里做售货员。她和卡佛在1957年结婚,当时离她17岁生日还有两个月的时间,玛丽雅恩怀孕了。接着在不到18岁时,她发现自己又怀孕了。为了养活卡佛,接下来的二十五年时她做过女调酒师,饭店的女老板,大百科全书的女销售员,教师。在结婚早期,为了给卡佛买第一台打字机,她做包装水果的工作做了两周。

    She was beautiful; he was hulking, possessive and sometimes violent. In Car­ver’s view, his own infidelities did not excuse hers. After Maryann indulged in “a tipsy[Michael3]  flirtation” at a dinner party in 1975 — by which time Carver’s alcoholism had reached the full-blown stage — he hit her upside the head with a wine bottle, severing an artery[Michael4]  near her ear and almost killing her. “He needed ‘an illusion of freedom,’ ” Sklenicka writes, “but could not bear the thought of her with another man.” It is one of the few points in her admirable biography where Sklenicka shows real sympathy for the woman who supported Carver and seems to have never stopped loving him.

    玛丽雅恩很美丽,而卡佛却很粗俗,占有欲还很强,有时还很暴力。用卡佛的观点来讲,他自己不忠,还不求得妻子的原谅。1975年,在一个晏会上玛丽雅恩陷入了酒后遭到调戏的事件后,那时,卡佛酗酒已达到了顶峰状态,他用酒瓶打了玛丽的头部,割断了耳旁的一根动脉,差点杀了她。卡罗尔斯科伦利卡写到:“他(卡佛)需要一种虚幻的自由,但却脑子里却容不下她与另一个男人在一起。” 卡罗尔斯科伦利卡在她那本受人称赞的自传里有一点表现了对支持卡佛的那个女人的真正同情,似乎那个女人从没停止爱过他。

    Although Sklenicka exhibits something like awe for Carver the writer, and clearly understands the warping influence alcohol had on his life, she is almost nonjudgmental when it comes to Carver the nasty drunk and ungrateful (not to mention sometimes dangerous) husband. She quotes the novelist Diane Smith (“Letters From Yellowstone”) as saying, “That was a bad generation of men,” and pretty much leaves it at that. When she quotes Maryann calling herself a “literary Cinderella, living in exile for the good of Car­ver’s career,” the first Mrs. Carver comes across as just another whining ex-wife rather than as the stalwart[Michael5]  she undoubtedly was. Ray and Maryann were married for 25 years, and it was during those years that Carver wrote the bulk of his work. His time with the poet Tess Gallagher, the only other significant woman in his life, was less than half that.

    Nevertheless, it was Gallagher who reaped the personal benefits of Carver’s sobriety (he took his last drink a year before they fell in love) and the financial ones as well. During the divorce proceedings, Maryann’s lawyer said — this both haunts me and to some degree taints my enjoyment of Carver’s stories — that without a decent court settlement, Maryann Burk Carver’s post-divorce life would be “like a bag of doorknobs that wouldn’t open any doors.”

    虽然卡罗尔斯科伦利卡展示了对卡佛这位作家的某种敬畏,但明显,她也理解酒精对卡佛一生扭曲的影响,但是对于卡佛那令人厌恶的酗酒个性,无情无义(不用提,有时还是危险的)的丈夫的人品没有做任何评判。他引用了黛安-史密斯的说法(“来自黄石的信”)那是“隋落的一代”,对此也就是这么点了。当他用玛丽雅恩称自己是一个为了卡佛的职业过着颠沛流离的生活“文学灰姑娘”。第一个卡佛夫人遇到了另一个哀怨的前妻,而非她毫无法疑问是坚毅的。卡佛与玛丽雅恩结婚25年了,就在这期间,卡佛写了大量的作品。一生与诗人戴斯-盖拉格河,唯一个他生命中最重要的女人,仅次于他的妻子。

    然而,盖拉格河收获了卡佛清醒时创造的个人利益(在他们相爱之前,这是他最后一次酗酒)以及他的经济利益。在离婚期间,玛丽雅恩的律师说---由于一个体面的法庭调解,玛丽雅恩-伯格卡佛离婚后的生活可能会像一包门把手一样不可能打开任何一扇门。

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    Maryann’s response was, “Ray says he’ll send money every month, and I believe him.” Carver carried through on that promise, although not without a good deal of grousing. But when he died in 1988, the woman who had provided his financial foundation discovered that she had been cut out of sharing the continuing financial rewards of Carver’s popular short-story collections. Carver’s savings alone totaled almost $215,000 at the time of his death; Maryann got about $10,000. Carver’s mother got even less: at age 78, she was living in public housing in Sacramento and eking out a living [Michael6] as a “grandmother aide” in an elementary school. Sklenicka doesn’t call this shabby treatment, but I am happy to do it for her.

    玛丽雅恩的回答是:“卡佛说:“他会每月送钱给她”;因此我我相信他。”虽然也是牢骚满腹,但卡佛最终还是对现了承诺。但是卡佛在1988年死时,那个曾经给他提供过经济帮助的女人发现她已经不能继续分享卡佛流行小说集里所获得的经济报酬了。卡佛临死时的存款共有21.5万美元。玛丽雅恩分得了1万美元。卡佛的母亲分得的更少:78岁的年岁了,卡佛的母亲仍然住在萨克拉曼多的兼租房里,靠着祖母在小学的薪水的帮衬才得以免强过活。卡罗尔斯科伦利卡没有称这种状况为不公平的待遇,但很高兴为她这么做。

     

    It’s as a chronicle of Carver’s growth as a writer that Sklenicka’s book is invaluable, particularly after his career path crossed that of the editor Gordon Lish, the self-styled “Captain Fiction.” Any readers who doubt Lish’s baleful influence on the stories in “What We Talk About When We Talk About Love” are apt to think differently after reading Sklenicka’s eye-opening account of this difficult and ultimately poisonous relationship. Those still not convinced can read the corresponding stories in “Beginners,” now available in the sublimely portable and long-overdue “Raymond Carver: Collected Stories.”

    按卡佛成长为作家的时间顺序来记事,卡罗尔斯科伦利卡的这部书是无价之宝,尤其是他的职业路线穿插了编辑戈登-利雪的自编的“船长小说”思维路线之后。在读了卡罗尔斯科伦利卡对卡佛一生遇到的困难和其最后负面的人际关系所做的富有启发性的阐释后, 任何读者怀疑利雪在:《论爱时我们在谈什么》这部作品里有任何恶意的影响都可能是出于不同考虑。那些持怀疑论的人能够在“初学者”中看到的事件,现在都是唾手可得,包括那姗姗来迟的雷蒙德卡佛的“小说故事集”。

    In 1972, Lish changed the title of Car­ver’s second Esquire story — which he edited heavily — from “Are These Actual Miles?” (interesting and mysterious) to “What Is It?” (boring). When Carver, wild to be published in a major slick, decided to accept the changes, Maryann accused him “of being a whore, of selling out to the establishment.” John Gardner had once told Carver that line-editing was not negotiable. Carver may have accepted that — most writers willing to submit to the editing process do — but Lishs changes were wide and deep. Car­ver argued that “a major magazine publication was worth the compromise.” Lish, who tried unsuccessfully to edit Leonard Gardner (who would go on to write “Fat City”) with a similarly heavy hand, got his way with Carver. It was a harbinger.[Michael7] 

    1972rh ,利雪更改了卡佛的第二部《绅士》小说的名称-他已经过大量的编辑—从《这是实际距离吗》(事故有趣而又充满神秘感)到《它是什么》(故事很沉闷)在卡佛准备通过一个的颇有门路的大商人出版时,决定接受修改。玛丽雅恩骂他“是个把自己卖给了公司的娼妓”。约翰-加德纳曾经告诉他,内容的编辑是没的商量的。卡佛可能会接受这一点。多数作家都愿意屈服于这一编辑过程。但是利雪的修改涉及面太大,内容太深。而卡佛辩解到:“一家大的杂志出版商,是值得做出让步的。”利雪并没能成功地用类似重度笔法编辑里奥那多-加德纳的作品,(加德纳得以继续写《肥城》)但却在卡佛的作品里找到了这种手法。这可能是个征兆。

    Was Gordon Lish a good editor? Undoubtedly. Curtis Johnson, a textbook editor who introduced Lish to Carver, claims that Lish had “infallible taste in fiction.” But, as Maryann feared, he was — in Ray Carver’s case, at least — much better at discovery than development. And with Carver, he got what he wanted. Perhaps he sensed an essential weakness at Carver’s core (“people-pleasing” is what recovering alcoholics call it). Perhaps it was the strangely elitist view he seems to have held of Carver’s writing, branding the characters “grossly inept” and speaking of “their blatant illiteracies, of which Carver himself was unaware.” This did not stop him from taking credit for Car­ver’s success; Lish is said to have bragged that Car­ver was “his creature,” and what appears on the back jacket of “Will You Please Be Quiet, Please?”(1976), Car­ver’s first book of stories, is not Raymond Car­ver’s photograph but Gordon Lish’s name.

    那弋凳利雪倒底是不是个好的编辑呢?毫无疑问,是个好编辑。他是被一位教科书编辑,弋帝丝-约翰逊介绍给卡佛认识的,并声称利雪对小说有确实可信的品位。但玛丽雅恩很担心,就卡佛自己来看,比起创作小说,利雪更长于发现小说。与卡佛在一起,利雪学到了他想要的东西。也许在卡佛作品的核心当中,他意识到了一个重要的缺点(要“取悦于人们”就必须恢复到酗酒的状态中来)。或许这就是出色的天才们奇怪之处。似乎利雪已抓住了卡佛的作品精神,宣传人物的不称职,讲述他们的那些俗丽的无知,但是这一点卡佛自己并没有意识到。但这并没有阻止他承认卡佛的成功。据说利雪曾吹嘘是“他的物件”,在《对不起,你能够字静下来吗》这本书的封面套纸的背面上出现。这本书是卡佛的第一部小说,在封面套纸的背面没有雷蒙德-卡佛的相片,却有弋凳利雪的名字。

    Sklenicka’s account of the changes in Carver’s third book of stories, “What We Talk About When We Talk About Love” (1981), is meticulous and heartbreaking. There were, she says, three versions: A, B and C. Version A was the manuscrīpt Car­ver submitted. It was titled “So Much Water So Close to Home.” B was the manuscrīpt Lish initially sent back. He changed the name of the story “Beginners” to “What We Talk About When We Talk About Love,” and that became the new title of the book. Although Carver was disturbed by this, he nonetheless signed a binding (and unagented) contract in 1980. Soon after, Version C — the version most readers know — arrived on Carver’s desk. The differences between B and C “astounded” him. “He had urged Lish to take a pencil to the stories,” Skle­nicka writes. “He had not expected . . . a meat cleaver.” Unsure of himself, Carver was only three years into sobriety after two decades of heavy drinking; his correspondence with Lish over the wholesale changes to his work alternated between groveling (“you are a wonder, a genius”) and outright begging for a return to Version B. It did no good. According to Tess Gallagher, Lish refused by telephone to restore the earlier version, and if Carver understood nothing else, he understood that Lish held the “power of publication access.”

    在对卡佛的第三部小说,1981年出版的《论爱时我们谈些什么》1981年出版的解释是分外谨慎,而又让人觉得沉闷。她说,那儿有ABC三个版本,A是卡佛递交的手稿,曾冠名《多水近家》B是利雪发回来的初稿,他把这部小说的名字《初学者》改名为《论爱时我们谈些什么》这又变成了一部新署名的小说。虽然不断受到这些干扰,但卡佛还是在1980年签下了约束性的合同《非代理》。不久后,C版本,也就是多数读者所熟悉的出现在卡佛的桌上。B版本与C版本的差异让他太为吃惊,他忙催促利雪对这部进行编辑。卡罗尔斯科伦利卡写到:“他并不期望能有一把割肉的刀。由于缺乏自信,卡佛在酗了二十年的酒后,清醒了三年。在对关于批发商更改他作品的事情上,他给利雪写信中一会儿卑躬屈节(计好他说:你真是个天才),一会儿直率地请求他采用B版本。但这无济于事,据苔丝格兰格合所说,利雪打电话拒绝采用早期的那年版本,但是不是卡佛什么都不知情呢,他知道利雪握有出版通道的权利。

    This Hobson’s choice is the beating heart of “Raymond Carver: A Writer’s Life.” Any writer might wonder what he’d do in such a case. Certainly I did; in 1973, when my first novel was accepted for publication, I was in similar straits: young, endlessly drunk, trying to support a wife and two children, writing at night, hoping for a break. The break came, but until reading Sklenicka’s book, I thought it was the $2,500 advance Doubleday paid for “Carrie.” Now I realize it may have been not winding up with Gordon Lish as my editor.

    Courtesy Maryann Burke Carver

    霍布森的选择是让卡佛作家生活颇为紧张的。 任何作家都想知道在这种怀况下他会如何怎么做。当然我也是;1973年我的首部小说获准出版,人也有相似的苦恼:年轻,无休止的酗酒,要努力养活妻子,供养两个孩子,晚上写作,需要休息一下。休息时,还是在读卡罗尔斯科伦利卡的书,我认为为了《卡丽》这本书,我要提前两天付给她2500美元。现在也意识到不要与我的编辑戈敦-利雪关系闹得紧张。

    彬彬有礼的玛丽伯格卡佛

    Raymond and Maryann Burke Carver and their two children on Rhodes in 1968.

    1968年雷蒙特-卡佛与玛丽雅恩-伯格-卡佛和他们的两个孩子在罗德岛

    One needs only to scan the stories in “Beginners” and the ones in “What We Talk About” to see the most obvious change: the prose in “Beginners” consists of dense blocks of narration broken up by bursts of dialogue; in “What We Talk About,” there is so much white space that some of the stories (“After the Denim,” for instance) look almost like chapters in a James Patterson novel. In many cases, the man who didn’t allow editors to change his own work gutted Carver’s, and on this subject Sklenicka voices an indignation she is either unwilling or unable to muster on Maryann’s behalf, calling Lish’s editing of Carver “a usurpation.” He imposed his own style on Carver’s stories, and the so-called minimalism with which Carver is credited was actually Lish’s deal. “Gordon . . . came to think that he knew everything,” Curtis Johnson says. “It became pernicious.”

    只在浏览一下《初学者》和《我们谈什么》里面的故事情节就会发现明显的变化:《初学者》有大量长篇累牍的叙述,而且不时地穿插有大量的对话;《我们谈什么》有太多苍白的空间,当中有故事情节(如:追随邓丽姆)像詹姆斯-皮特森小说里面的章节内容。在很多情况下,那人是不充许编辑更改卡佛构思的作品的,并且就这个主题上而言,卡罗尔斯科伦利卡表求示愤慨,但是他既不愿意也不能代表玛丽雅恩称利雪对卡佛作品的编辑是为“篡改”。利雪把自己的风格强加在卡佛的作品上,这就是卡佛称之为所谓的艺术最低纲领,实际上与利雪的一场交易。“戈凳……也开始认为他了解了这些”,柯蒂斯-约翰逊说:性质已变得极为恶劣了。

    Sklenicka analyzes many of the ­changes, but the wise reader will turn to the “Collected Stories” and see them for him- or herself. Two of the most dismaying examples are “If It Please You” (“After the Denim” in “What We Talk About”) and “A Small, Good Thing” (“The Bath” in “What We Talk About”).

    卡罗尔斯科伦利卡分析了许多故事情节上的变化,但是明智的读者将会去读《故事集》,会以他们自己的判断去理解。两个最令人失望的例子是“《如果他让你高兴》(在《我们谈什么》中的“追随邓丽姆”)和《小小好东西》(《我们谈什么》中的冼澡。

    In “If It Please You,” James and Edith Packer, a getting-on-in-years couple, arrive at the local bingo hall to discover their regular places have been taken by a young hippie couple. Worse, James observes the young man cheating (although he doesn’t win; his girlfriend does). During the course of the evening, Edith whispers to her husband that she’s “spotting.” Later, back at home, she tells him the bleeding is serious, and she’ll have to go to the doctor the following day. In bed, James struggles to pray (a survival skill both James and his creator acquired in daily A.A. meetings), first hesitantly, then “beginning to mutter words aloud and to pray in earnest. . . . He prayed for Edith, that she would be all right.” The prayers don’t bring relief until he adds the hippie couple to his meditations, casting aside his former bitter feelings. The story ends on a note of hard-won hope: “ ‘If it please you,’ he said in the new prayers for all of them, the living and the dead.” In the Lish-edited version, there are no prayers and hence no epiphany — only a worried and resentful husband who wants to tell the irritating hippies what happens “after the denim[Michael8] ,”[Michael9]  after the games. It’s a total rewrite, and it’s a cheat.

    在《如果它让你高兴》中詹姆斯和埃迪帕克,一对几年都相处溶洽的夫妇抵达了当地的的酒吧,发现他们曾经的位置已被一对嬉皮士夫妇占据了。更糟糕的是,詹姆斯看了那个年轻人在撒谎(尽管他并没有赢,但他的女朋友赢了)。在那个夜晚,埃迪斯小声对他丈夫说了她的发现。后来回到家后,她告诉丈夫说流血非常严重,必须第二天去看医生。在床上,詹姆斯努力去祈祷(詹姆斯和他的创作者在A.A.开会中学到了生存技能),一开始还有点犹豫,慢慢地,开始小声地说出祈祷的话,并认真地祈祷起来。他为埃迪斯祈祷,所以埃迪斯就会好起来。祈祷者并没有放松下来,直到让那对嬉皮士夫妇进入他的思维中,并把以前痛苦的感觉弃之一边。这个故事以一句努力赢得希望的话结尾。那是他在为所有人祈祷中说:“或生或死,如果它让你高兴。”而在利雪的修改的版本中,并没有祈祷,因此也就没有领悟了,—只有又是提心掉胆又是气愤的丈夫想要告诉那个愤怒的嬉皮士发生什么事, 游戏结束后,“追随邓丽姆”。这样做完全是改写吗,简直是对原作的欺骗。

    The contrast between “The Bath” (Lish-edited) and “A Small, Good Thing” (Ray Carver unplugged[Michael10] ) is even less palatable. On her son’s birthday, Scotty’s mother orders a birthday cake that will never be eaten. The boy is struck by a car on his way home from school and winds up in a coma.[Michael11]  In both stories, the baker makes dunning calls to the mother and her husband while their son lies near death in the hospital. Lish’s baker is a sinister figure, symbolic of death’s inevitability. We last hear from him on the phone, still wanting to be paid. In Carver’s version, the couple — who are actually characters instead of shadows — go to see the baker, who apologizes for his unintended cruelty when he understands the situation. He gives the bereaved parents coffee and hot rolls. The three of them take this communion together and talk until morning. “Eating is a small, good thing in a time like this,” the baker says. This version has a satisfying symmetry that the stripped-down Lish version lacks, but it has something more important: it has heart.

    利雪编辑的《洗澡》与雷蒙特卡佛更正的《小小好东西》之间的对比甚至也让人觉得不甚满意。在斯科特儿子的生日那天,他母亲给孙子定了一个蛋糕,但永远不会有人吃了。因为那个孩子在上学回家的路上被汽车给撞了,并已吓得昏迷过去了。在上面两部作品中,当斯科特的儿子躺在医院快死的时,面包师给她的母亲和丈夫打了电话去催促了。利雪版本中的面包师是个恶人,也是死亡必然性的像征。最后一次在电话中听到他讲话,仍然还要对方会那个蛋糕的钱。而在卡佛的版本中,而去看那个面包师的那对夫妇,实际上是主要人物角色,而非影射人物,而那个面包师在明白事情的原由后,也为他的无心的冒失道了歉;并且还为那对丧子的夫妇端来了咖啡和热的卷饼。三人一起交谈到第二天早晨。那位面包师说:“吃得不多的东西,但像这样的时光却非常好。”这个版本有一种令人满意的匀称美,那是利雪蹩脚的版本所没有的美,更重要的是:卡佛版本能触动人的心灵深处。

    Lish was able . . . to make a snowman out of a snowdrift” is what Sklenicka says about his version of Carver’s stories, but that’s not much of a metaphor. She does better when talking about Lish’s changes to a passage in “They’re Not Your Husband” (in “Will You Please Be Quiet, Please?”), pointing out that the Lish version is “meaner, coarser and somewhat diminishing to both characters.” Carver himself says it best. When the narrator of “The Fling” finally faces up to the fact that he has no love or comfort to give his father, he says of himself, “I was all smooth surface with nothing inside except emptiness.” Ultimately, that’s what is wrong with the Ray Carver stories as Lish presented them to the world, and what makes both the Sklenicka biography and the “Collected Stories” such a welcome and necessary corrective.

    “利雪能够…..在雪堆里堆起雪人”,这就是卡罗尔斯科伦利卡对卡佛故事情节特点的说明,但这不称不上是比喻。在谈到利雪对《他们不是你们的丈夫》(《可以安静下来吗》)里的片章进行的修改中,卡罗尔斯科伦利卡做的比较好,并指出利雪的版本“更加低劣,粗糙并有损人物的形象。”但卡佛自己说它不错。在《飞》的叙述者最终面对的一个事实是,他没有爱和安慰给予他的父亲,并对自己说:“我内心平静的很,几乎是空空如也。”从根本来讲,在利雪把这些故事呈现给大家时,这也是卡佛自己的错误,但这让卡罗尔斯科伦利卡的自传和《故事集》如此受欢迎,并对卡佛的作品做了必要纠正。



  • 中东地区新闻

    2010-10-25

    A bribery case in Israel

    以色列的贿赂案

    A former leader under a shadow丑闻当中的以色列前领导

    A prominent Israeli politician, Ehud Olmert, is accused of dishonesty 著名的以色列政治家,厄斛德-欧蒙特被控欺诈。

     

    Apr 22nd 2010 | JERUSALEM | From The Economist print edition

     

    THE distinctiveness of Israel’s latest corruption scandal is that it almost literally hits you in the eye. Many Jerusalemites feel affronted each time they look up at the Holyland Project, a string of four high-rise buildings tearing through the skyline on the western hilltops edging the city. Five more towers are to rise up under plans inexplicably approved by the municipal and district authorities.

    以色列最近一起的腐败丑闻,其特殊性就在于其表述过于引人注意。很多耶路撒冷人每次看到城边西山上的一排四栋高耸入云的大厦(被称之为圣地工程),就感觉蒙羞。另外还有五座市政厅和区政府审批的大厦在这个圣地工程计划当中也将拔地而起,不过这项审批有很多地方是难以解释的。

     

    Inexplicably, that is, unless the wheels were illicitly oiled by the developers. A state’s witness says bribes were indeed paid, to the tune of millions of shekels 谢尔克货币). He claims that the two mayors who preceded the present incumbent were both on the take: Uri Lupolianski (2003-08) and before him Ehud Olmert (1993-2003), who has also been accused of continuing to help the developers when he moved on to become minister of commerce. Both men fiercely deny any wrongdoing.

    要不是开发商从中活动运作,怎么会令人不解。一位重要证人表示,事实上这个工程支付几百万元的贿赂,并声称负责这项工程的两位市长都接受了贿赂,他们分别是在2003年到2008年任市长的尤瑞-洛普兰恩斯基,他的前任市长厄斛德-欧蒙特,他在1993年到2003年担任市长。厄斛德还被指控在升任商务部部长后,还在继续帮助开发商。但这两位都强烈反对有任何不当行为。

     

    Mr Olmert later became prime minister (2006-09) until forced to stand down amid separate allegations of financial impropriety, for which he is now standing trial. But those proceedings have been suspended for a month while prosecution and defence grapple with the latest allegations.

    厄斛德先生后在2006年到2009年其间担任总理,直到卷入几起经济纠纷案的,才被近离任。现在他还在疲于应付这几起案件。而在最近几起控告中被起诉之前,他曾因为前几起案子停职了一个月。

     

    Mr Lupolianski, an ultra-Orthodox leader honoured by the state for creating a now-huge philanthropic trust that lends medical equipment, was arrested on April 14th. Most of his alleged bribe money—a good 2m shekels ($537,000), according to the key witness—is said to have gone on medical equipment. If eventually charged, he may well contend that the cash was for donations to the charity, not bribes for himself. The police say the law makes no such distinction. Anyway, they say, some donations went to his political campaigns.

    洛普兰恩斯基先生,是一位激进派东正教领导人,他在414日被捕。他曾经因创建了一家出借医疗设备的大型慈善信托机构,而受到国家的褒奖。据一位重要证人批露,指控他受贿数目约有$537,000,但是这笔钱都花在了医疗设备上。实际上,如果他被指控了,最好同意这笔钱是作为慈善机构的捐款,而不是给他个人的行贿。一位警察说,法律面前,他会一视同仁的。不管怎样,这笔捐款已花在他的政治选举中了。

     

    Politicians pocketing rich men’s largesse has long been an area of law steeped in ambivalence in Israel, as in other democracies where lax election-financing rules shade into bribery. Many prominent public figures, among them the defence minister and Labour party leader, Ehud Barak, have fended off investigations by the police and the state comptroller arising out of profligate campaigning. A son of Ariel Sharon, prime minister in 2001-06, was sent to prison for seven months after taking sole blame for his father’s flagrant overspending and other shenanigans in a party primary campaign in 2000. His rival in that race, who apparently played by the book (and lost), was Mr Olmert.

    以色列长期以来,政治家从富人手中敛财在法律上一直处于在一个两难的境地,因为在一些民主活动中,由于选举资助法律的宽松,而滋生了腐败受贿。在许多著名的社会名流当中,国防部长以及工党领袖,厄斛德-巴拉克在一系列的竞选活动当中,一直规避警察和国家审计人员的调查。前任以色列总沙龙(2001-2006)的儿子由于谴责其父在2000年党的重要选举中公然挥霍并使用了一些其它阴谋,为此获刑七个月。而在这次选举中,他的竞争对手欧蒙特却是规规矩矩的(但竞选却失败了)。

     

    Not everyone is happy with the law-enforcement agencies’ new zeal against politicians. Some say the public administration is being gummed up as officials defer decisions for fear of prompting malevolent and spurious investigations. Filing criminal complaints against a rival has become a standard political tactic. By the time the file is closed or the case thrown out, the damage is often irreversible.

    并不是人人都乐于执法机构总是满怀热情的与政治家作对。 据称,由于政府官员担心升迁受阻,恶意调查,不得不拖延某些决议,这样国家公共管理现在正每况愈下。记录竞争对手的不利投诉,已经成为一项公认的政治手段。当这些记录在案的资料藏起来了或是丢弃之后,所造成的损失是无法挽回的。

     

    But such reservations pale before the Holyland affair. “That’s why I feel so wholeheartedly behind the justice of this case,” says a veteran Jerusalem commentator. “It’s real corruption, hurting ordinary people.” That, however, is yet to be proven. “I have never taken a bribe and never been offered a bribe,” Mr Olmert assured the nation on television. The state’s key witness, Shmuel Dechner, now 73, served for years as the Holyland project’s fixer but fell out with his employers. He says he funnelled millions of dollars in bribes to elected officials and civil servants in order to expand the original plan for three modest hotels on the hillside into a massive nine-tower complex, which a judge has termed an architectural monstrosity. He meticulously recorded every transaction. But the accused may seek to weaken his evidence by arguing that he has a chip on his shoulder. The prosecution will need independent corroborationevidence if it is to nail Mr Olmert.

    但是圣地事件发生前,这些保留的文件都已失效了。耶路撒冷的一位高级评论员说,“这就是为什么我会非常关注这件案子司法背后的事情”。“这是真正的腐败,受伤害的都是普通人,然而这些腐败案却无法得到证实。”欧蒙特在电视上向全国保证:我从没行过一次贿,也没有受过一次贿。现年73岁的施姆尔-底查勒在圣地工程中做了七年的调停员,是国家的一位重要证人,曾与他的老板发生争吵。他说,曾几次挪用了几百万美元贿赂当选官员和公务员,就是为了扩大原有的工程计划,把三个位于山边的中型酒店迁进了一大片楼群中,那里有九栋大楼。在这过程中,他仔细记录了每一笔交易。可是这份控告中,他却被控别有用心,从而减弱了他的这份证词作用。所以如果要定欧蒙特的罪,起诉仍需要独立的证据。

     

    If he were eventually to go to prison, he would be his cabinet’s second member to do so. His finance minister, Avraham Hirschson, is serving five-and-a-half years for embezzling millions from the trade union he used to head. And another former minister, Shlomo Benizri, who belongs to a religious party, Shas, is serving four years behind bars—for taking bribes.

    如果被判入狱,欧蒙特将是内阁第二位获罪入狱的成员。而此前财政部长阿瓦哈姆-赫尔赤森由于从他曾任职的工会中挪用几百万公款,而获刑五年六个月,现在仍在服刑。另外一位前部长,施洛姆-本丽兹瑞是一位宗教党派的人士由于受贿也获刑四年。

  • 失落园(选段)

    2010-7-17

    Paradise Lost(失落园)选段

    He, above the rest

    In shape and gesture proudly eminent,

    Stood like a tower; his form had not yet lost

    All its original brightness; nor appeared

    Less then archangel ruined, and the excess

    Of glory obscured.

    那身形,一举一动

    都与众不同,引人注目

    矗立如松,永不倒下

    昔日辉煌,已不再现

    那天使已陨落,

    那辉煌已看不清


    Hamlet

    If thou didst ever hold me in thy heart,

    Absent thee from felicity awhile,

    And in this harsh world draw thy breath in pain,

    To tell me story

    如果你心里曾经拥有我

    此刻幸福离你一会儿

    在这万恶的世上,连呼吸都很痛苦,

    告诉我你的故事。

  • 风花雪月

    2010-7-13

  • Chrismas Trees

    2010-7-12

    Christmas Trees  

     

    A Christmas Circular Letter

     

     

    The city had withdrawn into itself          

    And left at last the country to the country;   

    When between whirls of snow not come to lie 

    And whirls of foliage not yet laid, there drove 

    A stranger to our yard, who looked the city,  

    Yet did in country fashion in that there       

    He sat and waited till he drew us out      

    A-buttoning coats to ask him who he was.     

    He proved to be the city come again         

    To look for something it had left behind       

    And could not do without and keep its Christmas. 

    He asked if I would sell my Christmas trees;     

    My woods—the young fir balsams like a place   

    Where houses all are churches and have spires. 

    I hadn’t thought of them as Christmas Trees.   

    I doubt if I was tempted for a moment         

    To sell them off their feet to go in cars         

    And leave the slope behind the house all bare, 

    Where the sun shines now no warmer than the moon. 

    I’d hate to have them know it if I was.           

    Yet more I’d hate to hold my trees except      

    As others hold theirs or refuse for them,       

    Beyond the time of profitable growth,        

    The trial by market everything must come to. 

    I dallied so much with the thought of selling.     

    Then whether from mistaken courtesy         

    And fear of seeming short of speech, or whether 

    From hope of hearing good of what was mine,   

    I said, "There aren’t enough to be worthwhile." 

    "I could soon tell how many they would cut,    

    You let me look them over."                  

     

    "You could look.                             

    But don’t expect I’m going to let you have them."   

    Pasture they spring in, some in clumps too close   

    That lop each other of boughs, but not a few      

    Quite solitary and having equal boughs          

    All round and round. The latter he nodded "Yes" to, 

    Or paused to say beneath some lovelier one,      

    With a buyer’s moderation, "That would do."       

    I thought so too, but wasn’t there to say so.        

    We climbed the pasture on the south, crossed over, 

    And came down on the north.                    

    He said, "A thousand."                         

     

    "A thousand Christmas trees!—at what apiece?"   

     

    He felt some need of softening that to me:      

    "A thousand trees would come to thirty dollars." 

     

    Then I was certain I had never meant           

    To let him have them. Never show surprise!     

    But thirty dollars seemed so small beside       

    The extent of pasture I should strip, three cents  

    (For that was all they figured out apiece),       

    Three cents so small beside the dollar friends    

    I should be writing to within the hour           

    Would pay in cities for good trees like those,     

    Regular vestry-trees whole Sunday Schools        

    Could hang enough on to pick off enough.       

    A thousand Christmas trees I didn’t know I had!   

    Worth three cents more to give away than sell,   

    As may be shown by a simple calculation.       

    Too bad I couldn’t lay one in a letter.          

    I can’t help wishing I could send you one,       

    In wishing you herewith a Merry Christmas.    


       圣诞树

     

    一封圣诞通函

     

     

       城市已缩回去了

       最终把这个国家只留给了乡村田园;

       雪花在空中一直打转而不落地

       落叶也一样一直在空中飘游

       陌人踏入我院,说曾见城市,

       那儿没有乡村的韵味

        坐在那里等着一一给我们道来

       着大衣者问,君为谁。

        他则证实城市会再回来

     找寻它曾丢下的

    它不能没有这,为的是留住它的圣诞

     他问我能否卖了我的圣诞树;

     我的那片树林满是小冷杉,它们喜欢这个地方

     我从没把它们看成是圣诞树。

     那儿的房子是教堂,还有尖顶。

     我怀疑当时是否受到了诱惑卖了它们。

    而不得不上了车里

     留下房屋后面一片光秃秃的斜坡,

      那儿的阳光也不再比月光温暖。

    我恨让他们知晓我是否会这样。

    更恨独自霸占着这些树

    别人要他们,或不要他们,

    多少时间后,长大了可以赚不少。

    每一样东西必须通过市场的考验

    如果考虑卖掉他们,那就是在玩弄。  

    这会不会是个错误的礼数

     担心似乎没说什么,

     这样是否会听到有人说我的好话呢

    我们:那不足以值这个价

    “很快我就能知道他们砍去了多少,

    你应该让我照看着。”

     

     “你可以的。”

      除非得到我的充许,否则不可以。”

    他们种出草地,好几块挨在一起

    削下了碍事大树枝,但不是很多,

    与众不同,圆形的看起来整齐多了。

    后面那棵,他点头说“不错”

    顿了一下,说下面那些有一棵更漂亮

    买家考虑了一下,“就这样了。”

    我也认同,但并没有这么说。

    爬上了南边的那块草地,穿过去,

    又下到了北边。

    他说:“一千多。”

     

    “那一片,有一千多圣诞树?”

     

    他觉得有必要对我少说点价钱

    “一千棵树,三十块。”

     

     我肯定我从不会小气让他拿走那些树

     永不会表示惊奇!

     但三十块是不是太少了点

     那片草地我还得割去,加三分

    (因为他算出了那一整片),

    对有钱的大佬来说,三分太少了

    一个小时后,我会写信的

    这么漂亮的树,到城市里一定能卖个好价钱,

    整个主日学校的礼拜堂都要那树。 

    他们一定会买很多的。

    我不知道我有没有 一千棵。

    假装简单的算了一下。

    那太糟了我不能留下一棵作纪念。

    忍不住我要送你一棵,

    表达我祝你圣诞快乐。

    Comments: This poem is with lovely humor to uncover the environment stain in the process of American urbanization. Ironically citizens crave for beauty of the countryside.  In this poem writer tells a small story, a businessman from city come to countryside to buy firs as Charismas tress to sell them to city for profit. The conversation between writer and businessman is very humor, showing great irony to city life while criticizing the exploitation to countryside resource!

    Well, I advocate that we should protect our venerable but vulnerable environment as possible as we can! 

  • 英国银行的困境

    2009-8-03

    The bankers’ dilemma

    银行家们的困境

    The UK government’s policies towards the banks are inadequate. This is not surprising because the British government and both main political parties lack firm ideological foundations. Neoliberalism has failed.  However, the circumstances the banks find themselves in are best understood through the lens of game theory; their situation is analogous to the prisoners’ dilemma. Government policy ought to be guided accordingly, with a firmer hand on bank lending.

    英国政府对银行的政策向来不到位。由于不列颠政府和其主要政党都缺少坚定的意识形态基础,所以这一点也不奇怪。新自由主义失败了,而银行发现自己所处的境地通过博弈多棱镜而很好的理解了。他们的情形类似于囚犯,都是进退两难。政府的政策方针应该用银行借贷那双有力的大手加以引导。

    Gordon Brown must feel disorientated, having milked the cash cow of the City for a decade and having confidently called the end of boom and bust. The economic successes of Britain during his years as finance chancellor (finance minister) are marginalised by its failures during his premiership. The Labour government is trapped between two ideological failures, having embraced economic liberalism that did not work; and state ownership, a policy it had rejected years ago.

    十年来在挤干了城市这只大奶牛的油水后,并且可以信心十足的说繁荣的时代已经结束了,戈登布朗一定会觉得自己是迷失了方向。作为首相他的失误已经弱化了他在担任财政大臣期间所取的经济方面成功。在接纳了并不奏效的经济自由主义和多年就已放弃的国有化的政策后,工党政府现已陷入了两种意识形态的失败之间。

    Its policies towards the banks seem to mirror this confusion. Moreover, the government is willing to place its own political survival ahead of the long-term interests of Britain. This is most obvious in the government’s policy desire to sell our stakes in the various part-nationalised banks ahead of the general election (which must be held in the next 11 months). This would be counterproductive in attempts to encourage the banking community to lend.

    他的银行政策似乎就能反应出他的这种困惑。此外政府也乐意把自己的存活政治放在英国的长期利益之前。很明显在大选(11个月后举行)之前政府的政策也是想把各种部分国有化银行的资产卖掉。试图鼓励银行借贷这可能达不到预期的目标。

    There is a glaring coordination failure in British banking at the moment. Each bank is reluctant to lend because the economic future looks gloomy. But the future looks bad in part because banks are collectively reluctant to lend. The problem looks rather like the prisoners’ dilemma whereby two inmates, who have committed the same crime, are put in separate cells without the ability to cooperate with each other.

    如今英国银行业明显面临着协调失败的问题。由于经济前景不明朗,每家银行都不愿意借贷。但是未来看起来很糟糕,部分是因为银行集体不愿意借贷。这个问题看起来就像是同处一室的囚犯因犯下同样罪刑而面临的尴尬:把他们分开关押他们就没有了相互合作的能力了。

    For each prisoner, the optimal strategy is to grass on the other, so the outcome of the game is sub-optimal for both players. In the UK, for individual banks it makes no commercial sense to lend aggressively because each bank acting in isolation cannot kick start a recovery. Collectively, however, they could make a material contribution to reducing the output gap, and relieve the pressure on fiscal policy.

    对于每一个囚犯来讲,最好的方法就是相互告密,游戏的结局就是双方都不是最满意。在英国,单个银行积极借贷是没有任何意义的,因为每个单独行动的银行是无法起动经济的复苏。然而,联合起来他们就能为降低收入差距,缓和财政政策压力做出实质的贡献。

    In the prisoners’ dilemma, the solution is for the prisoners to communicate and work out a mechanism that ensures neither grasses on each other. They would both receive a lesser sentence if this happened. The policy implication is for the government to find some credible mechanism that would lead all banks to lend aggressively.

    而对于囚犯面临的难题,解决方法是让他们沟通,然后制定出一套以确保彼此都不会告密的机制方法。这样他们分开审判后都会受到最小的判决。对于政府来讲,这个政策寓意就是找到可信的一套机制让所有银行都愿意积极借贷。

    The government could learn from the Chinese who run a large part of their stimulus package through bank lending. The Chinese government does not seem to have a problem telling its senior bankers how much and where to lend.  Lending targets and policies would obviously have to have “UK characteristics”, and these might include a much more active intervention in part-nationalised banks; and forced management changes in private banks that do not meet specified targets.

    政府就可以学习中国通过银行借贷实施了一大部分一揽子经济刺激方案的策略。而中国政府似乎并没有面临要告诉那些资深银行家们,要贷多少款要把款贷给谁的问题。 借贷目标和政策明显要具有“英国特色”,这可能就包括要对部分国有化的银行要进行积极的干预,而对那些达不到具体目标的私有银行要强制其改变管理。

    This system could be incorporated in to the current monetary policy process, led by the Bank of England’s monetary policy committee, which could calibrate the policy, and implemented by the Bank.

    这套机制可以首先通过英格兰银行货币政策委员会融入到流通货币政策当中去。委员会可以对政策进行调整,由银行具体实施。

    To individual banks, an aggressive increase in lending will feel like commercial suicide in the current economic environment.  However, a broad-based, coordinated push by all UK banks would facilitate economic conditions conducive to people repaying any loans in due course. Gross non-performing loans would probably increase but these ought to be weighed against the problems of a counter-factual economic environment, which would probably include a worse fiscal situation.

    对于单个银行来讲,在当前经济环境下大肆增加借贷感觉像是在进行商业自杀。然而,通过所有银行大范围地进行协调推进将会促进经济环境,并有助于人们及时偿还贷款。集体无作为贷款(贷款没有落实到具体项目)的现象可能会增加,但还得掂量一下当前违反现实经济环境问题的孰轻孰重,这也可能包括恶化的财政情况。

    To be fair to the government, it has made some attempts to prop up bank lending, including the development of a lending panel in November 2008. However, the statistical facts speak for themselves: banks are not lending enough. The government’s response to weak lending data now appears to be to gather the bank chiefs in a room to deliver an expression of concern, without biscuits. It is not enough.

    公平一点来讲,政府已经做了一些支持银行借贷的尝试,如在2008年的11月份成立的借贷小组。然而,统计事实却总是为它们自己利益着想:银行借贷不足。政府对于较小的借贷数据的反应似乎只是把银行的主管召集起来表示政府的关切之意,而没有具体的动作。这远远不够。

    Unfortunately, one aspect of government policy runs against the policy thrust we need to see. The chancellor has publicly stated that the part-nationalised banks ought to remain on a commercial footing.  Presumably this is for fear of them becoming government departments, and to keep them prepped for privatisation.  At times like these, we want the banks to step out of their commercial comfort zone, albeit it temporarily.

    很不幸,政府的政策方面违反了我需要看到的推进政策。而财务大臣曾公开表示,部分国有化银行应该保持其商业地位。可以想象,这是因为害怕这些银行成为政府单位,而让他们为私有化作准备。有时就像这样,我们想要银行走出他们的商业安逸地带,尽管这只是暂时的。

    Such a policy, if implemented effectively, could be enormously profitable for the taxpayer. Buying large stakes in banks during a financial crisis, which are sold when the economy recovers, is potentially very lucrative.

    这个政策如果有效地执行下去,对于纳税人是非常有利可图的。在金融危机时购买大笔银行资产,然后在经济复苏时卖出,这可能就要赚一大笔。

    Privatising the banks before the election would not only reduce the chance of bringing about a concerted lending push, it would also mean the taxpayer would miss out on any financial gains that could result.  It would be preferable all round if the government used its monopolistic powers to bring about the conditions in which financial gains were made, rather than selling at the bottom.

    在大选前把银行私有化不仅可以减少会引发协同贷款的机会,并且可以让纳税者失去任何可能的金融收益。现在大家都喜欢如果政府用自己的垄断权力可以塑造那种大家都可获取金融收益的环境,而不是价格跌到谷底的时候才卖出境地。

    The weakness in bank lending is a drag on the British economy at a time when fiscal and monetary policy are running full throttle. It is debatable whether quantitative easing will have any material impact (Japan’s experience means we should not be too hopeful). And a further net stimulus from fiscal policy would require an increase in the budget deficit, which is an unfortunate truth when the deficit is already intolerably high.  We are running low on ammunition, so it makes sense to use other weaponry.

    银行借贷的缺点是财政货币政策充分发挥作用时有时会拖延英国经济的发展。是否定量宽松会有任何实质的影响(日本的经验表明我们不应该抱有太大的希望)这是颇具争议的。财政政策的净款值可能要求增加财政赤字,当财政赤字上升到了不可忍受的高度时,这就是一个不幸的事实。

     

  • 关注央行的货币政策

    2009-8-03

    Central banks must target more than just inflation

    中央银行应该多加关注当前的通胀

                                                                         

     

    Did inflation targeting fail? Central banks have mostly escaped blame for the crisis. Do they deserve to do so?

    通胀目标失败了吗? 而对于这次危机,中央银行却想极力免受其责。那么是否值得去这么做呢?

    Just over five years ago, Ben Bernanke, now chairman of the Federal Reserve, gave a speech on the “Great Moderation” – the declining volatility of inflation and output over the previous two decades. In this he emphasised the beneficial role of improved monetary policy. Central bankers felt proud of themselves. Pride went before a fall. Today, they are struggling with the deepest recession since the 1930s, a banking system on government life-support and the danger of deflation. How can it have gone so wrong?

    就在五年前,现任联邦储备局主席的,本-伯尔朗克曾就“大稳健”发表过一次演说—“过去二十年来通胀和输出影响力的衰退”。在这次演说中他强调改善货币政策所带来的利益。而中央银行却自鸣得意,但这种得意让其走向了衰败。如今,他们不得不与自上世纪30年代最严重的经济衰退,政府支持的金融业及通缩所带来的危险作斗争。这一切怎么会搞得这么糟糕?

    This is no small matter. Over almost three decades, policymakers and academics became ever more confident that they had found, in inflation targeting, the holy grail of fiat (or man-made) money. It had been a long journey from the gold standard of the 19th century, via the restored gold-exchange standard of the 1920s, the monetary chaos of the 1930s, the Bretton Woods system of adjustable exchange rates of the 1950s and 1960s, the termination of dollar convertibility into gold in 1971, and the monetary targeting of the 1970s and 1980s.

    这决不是一件小事,在差不多过去的三十年里,在关注通胀和法定不可兑换货币发行量方面,决策者们和学术界比以前更有信心了。从19世纪的金本位制,上世纪20年代的恢复金汇兑标准,30年代的货币混乱,五六十年代的布雷顿森林体系的可调节汇率制,到1971年结束美元对黄金的可兑换性和七八年代的货币目标政策,金融业已经走过了一个漫长的旅程。

    Frederic Mishkin of Columbia University, a former governor of the Federal Reserve and strong proponent of inflation targeting, argued, in a book published in 2007, that inflation targeting is an “information-inclusive strategy for the conduct of monetary policy”.* In other words, inflation targeting allows for all relevant variables – exchange rates, stock prices, housing prices and long-term bond prices – via their impact on activity and prospective inflation. Now that we are living with the implosion of the financial system, this view is no longer plausible.

    前联邦储备局主管,哥伦比亚大学的费雷德里克-密什科作为关注通胀的强烈支持者,在他2007年出版的一本著作中认为:对于货币政策行为来说通胀目标是一个信息包容战略。换句话说,通胀目标考虑所有相关的变量---汇率,股票价格,房产价格,远期债券价格---通过这些影响市场行为,预测通胀。而现在由于处在一个闭塞的金融体系当中,这种观点不再可行。

    No less discredited is the related view, also advanced by the Fed, that it is better to deal with the aftermath of asset price bubbles than prick them in advance. Prof Mishkin wrote that “it is highly presumptuous to think that government officials, even if they are central bankers, know better than private markets what the asset prices should be”. Today, few would mind such presumption, given the costs of the financial crises that follow asset price bubbles accompanied by big expansions in private credit.

    决少信心也是其因,更何况联邦储备局起到了推波助澜的作用。而处理好资产价格泡沫所带来的后果要好过提前把这泡沫刺破。密什科在他的书中写道: 认为政府官员(即使他们是一些银行家)要比自由市场更了解资产价格的真实面目,那简直是太想当然了。如今已知伴随着私立信贷的大肆扩张,紧随金融风险成本之后的资产价格泡沫,有些人就警惕这种猜想了。

    Complacency about the Great Moderation led first to a Great Unravelling and then a Great Recession. The private sector was complacent about risk. But so, too, were policymakers.

    自得于大稳健首先会导致大揭幕,然后再到大萧条。而私营板块也会乐于看到这种风险,政策制定者们同样也会如此。

    What role then did monetary policy play? I can identify three related critiques of the central banks.

    而货币政策到底扮演了什么样的角色?我可以发现中央银行的三大相关要点。

    First, John Taylor of Stanford University, a former official in the Bush administration, argues that the Fed lost its way by keeping interest rates too low in the early 2000s and so ignoring his eponymous Taylor rule, which relates interest rates to inflation and output.** This caused the housing boom and the subsequent destructive bust (see charts).

    首先,前布什政府官员,斯坦福大学的约翰太勒认为联邦储备局早在2000年的前期就把利率保持的太低,接着又忽视了与太勒齐名的太勒法则(其把利率与通胀和产出联系在一起)的时候,就已经迷失了方向。最终导致了房地产泡沫和接下来毁灭性的经济衰退。

    Prof Taylor has an additional point: by lowering rates too far, the Fed, he argues, also caused the rates offered by other central banks to be too low, thereby generating bubbles across a large part of the world. In retrospect, for example, the autonomy of the Bank of England was much smaller than most imagined: the wider the interest rate gap vis-a-vis the US, the more “hot money” flowed in. This induced a lowering of standards for granting credit and so a credit bubble.

    太勒教授又补充了一点,说联邦储备局把利率降的太离谱,造成了中央银行所制定的利率也降低了,结果是全世界的大部分地方产生了大量的泡沫。例如,回顾过去,英格兰自立银行比绝大数人想得要小,但是与美国的利率差距越大,流入其内部的热钱就越多。这就引发了降低信贷准入的标准,并形成了信贷泡沫。

    Second, a number of critics argue that central banks ought to target asset prices because of the huge damage subsequent collapses cause. As Andrew Smithers of London-based Smithers & Co notes in a recent report (Inflation: Neither Inevitable Nor Helpful, 30 April 2009), “by allowing asset bubbles, central banks have lost control of their economies, so that the risks of both inflation and deflation have increased”.

    其二,无数的评论认为中央银行应该瞄准资产价格,因为资产价格下跌会导致巨大有损失。正如伦敦史密瑟公司的安德鲁在最近的一份报告中指出(通胀:即不是不可避免也不是有多大的帮助)中央银行充许资产泡沫就会失去对经济的控制,其后果就是通胀和通缩的风险都会增大。

    Thus, when nominal asset prices and associated credit stocks go out of line with nominal income and prices of goods and services, one of two things is likely to happen: asset prices collapse, which threatens mass bankruptcy, depression and deflation; or prices of goods and services are pushed up to the level consistent with high asset prices, in which case there is inflation. In the short term, central banks also find themselves driven towards unconventional monetary policies that have unpredictable monetary effects (see chart).

    因此如果名义资产价格以及相关信贷股票市场偏离了名义上的收入和产品及服务价格,有一件事可能会发生:资产价格的崩溃将会让很多人破产,经济衰退,通缩,产品和服务价格都会被推到与出现通胀时候的高资产价格一致水平上。简言之,央行会发现自己正被推向非传统的货币政策。而这种货币政策又会产生不可预估的货币影响。(见表)

    Finally, economists in the “Austrian” tradition argue that the mistake was to set interest rates below the “natural rate”. This, argued Friedrich Hayek, also happened in the 1920s. The result is misallocation of resources. It also generates explosive growth of unsound credit. Then, in the downturn – as the American economist, Irving Fisher, argued in his Debt-Deflation Theory of Great Depressions, published in 1933 – balance-sheet deflation will set in, greatly aggravated by falling prices and shrinking incomes.

    最后一点,奥地利传统派经济学家认为,错就错在把利率设得的低于了平均利率。弗雷德霍施海牙克认为上世界20年代曾发生过样的事。其结果就是资源的配置不当,不健全的信贷呈暴炸性的增长。那时,正如美国经济学家埃文弗歇尔在他1933年发表的《大萧条的债务通缩理论》一书中认为,在经济衰退期间,资产负俩通缩是由于价格下跌收入减少所累积成的问题。

    Whichever critique one accepts, it seems clear, in retrospect, that monetary policy was too loose. As a result, we now face two challenges: clearing up the mess and designing a new approach to monetary policy.

    无论你同意哪一种评论观点,似乎很明确的是,回顾过去,我们的货币政策太宽松。结果就是,我们现在要面临两大问题,理清当前糟糕的形式,重新制定一种新的货币政策方法。

    On the former, we have three alternatives: liquidation; inflation; or growth. A policy of liquidation would proceed via mass bankruptcy and the collapse of a large part of the existing credit. That is an insane choice. A deliberate policy of inflation would re-awaken inflationary expectations and lead, inevitably, to another recession, in order to re-establish monetary stability. This leaves us only with growth. It is essential to sustain demand and return to growth without stoking up another credit bubble. This is going to be hard. That is why we should not have fallen into the quagmire in the first place.

    前者,我们有三种选择,清算,通胀或是增长。清算政策可以通过大规模的破产以及把现存的大部分信贷拆解来推行。而对于通胀来讲,为了重新稳定货币市场,刻意的通胀政策会再次唤醒通胀预期,不可避免地会导致再次的经济衰退。这简直就是一个愚蠢的选择。而现在留给我们的就是只有选择增长。在没有引起另一声信贷泡沫稳定需求,返回到增长的轨道上去是至关重要的,但这可能比较难。这也就是为什么我们应该一开始就陷入到一个尴尬的境地。

    On the latter, the choice, in the short term, is certainly going to be “inflation targeting plus”. “Out” is likely to be the “risk management” approach of the Fed, which turned out to give an unduly asymmetric response to negative economic shocks. “In” is likely to be “leaning against the wind” whenever asset prices rise rapidly and to exceptionally high levels, along with a counter-cyclical “macro-prudential” approach to capital requirements in systemically significant financial institutions.

    后者,简单的地说,我们的选择可能是通胀附加目标,“出去”很可能就是联邦储备局的风险管理方法对负面的经济冲击没能及时的做出相应的应对措施。“进去”很可能就是在资产价格快速上升到一个非常高的层面上“顶风而行”,同时伴随着为在系统上具有重要性的金融机构的资本要求所采取的反周期的“宏观谨慎”策略。

    This unforeseen crisis is surely a disaster for monetary policy. Most of us – I was one – thought we had at last found the holy grail. Now we know it was a mirage. This may be the last chance for fiat money. If it is not made to work better than it has done, who knows what our children might decide? Perhaps, in despair, they will even embrace what I still consider to be the absurdity of gold.

    那无法预料的危机一定是货币政策灾难。包括我自己,大多数人认为我们已经找到了那个圣盘。而现在我们知道那只不过是痴心妄想。那可能就是法定不兑换纸币的最后机会。这一点是如果不能让它比以前发挥更好的作用,天知道我们的下一代会做出什么决定?或许,失望之中,他们会接受我认为是黄金荒诞的法则。

    * Monetary Policy Strategy (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2007); ** Getting Off Track (Hoover Institution, 2009)

    2007年麻省理工学院) 货币政策战略;(2009年胡佛学院)脱轨

  • 危机中世界金融博弈

    2009-8-02

    Obama’s conservatism may not prove good enough

    保守可能并不是最好的 

    “If we want things to stay as they are, things will have to change.” Thus wrote the Sicilian writer Giuseppe di Lampedusa, in The Leopard. This seems to me the guiding principle of the Obama presidency. To many Americans, he seems a flaming radical. To me, he is a pragmatic conservative, albeit one responding to extraordinary times. In his own way, Mr Obama is following the path trodden by Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

    如果要让事态恢复到它原来的样子,那么很多事情就必须得改变”. 这是作家贵丝坡·迪 ·那朴德萨在美洲豹(杂志)中写的一句话。对我来说,这似乎就是奥巴马治国的政治纲领。而对于许多美国人来说,他似乎是一个充满激情的冒进分子。而我则认为尽管在这个非常时期,但他还是一个务实的保守分子。其只不过是在走富兰克林·罗斯福当年的路线。

    Nowhere is his conservatism more obvious than in the handling of the economic crisis. What we have seen unfolding, from the president’s choice of Lawrence Summers and Tim Geithner as his principal policy advisers, to last week’s “stress tests”, is classic conservative policymaking. The aim is simply to get the show back on the road. As Mr Obama told The New York Times: “I’m absolutely committed to making sure that our financial system is stable.” Stability is a quintessentially conservative aim. Many radicals on the right and left insist that undercapitalized banks should be recapitalized right now. But Mr Obama sees this as far too risky.

    这种保守主义在应对经济危机中更是表露无疑。从选择劳伦斯·萨莫和盖特那作为总统的首席政策顾问,到上周的“强调试验”中都能看出,在政策制定中他是非常保守的,其目的就是要让这一切回到原来的轨道上去。奥巴马在接受纽约时报采访时说:他会尽力去确保美国金融业的稳定。“稳定”这完完全全是一个保守的目标。许多右派和左派的激进分子认为,资金不足的银行应该立刻对资本结构进行调整。但奥巴马认为,这风险太大。

    The results of the stress tests were a big step along the road the administration is taking. They impose enough pain to appear credible, but not enough to be disruptive. The 10 affected banks will easily raise the needed money: a total of $75bn-- Their market valuations duly soared.

    按照其政府所采取的路线,强调试验的结果就是一大举措。对那些表面上可信的银行,施加了巨大的压力,而对那些要破产的银行却施压不够。10家受影响的银行,很容易就可以筹集到所需总数为$750亿的资金, 然后这些银行的市值就马上飙升。

    Douglas Elliott of the Brookings Institution has provided a comparative analysis of how the US regulators reached their conclusions.* He contrasts their numbers with those of the International Monetary Fund, in its latest Global Financial Stability Report, and Nouriel Roubini of RGE Monitor and New York University. He also allows for the fact that the IMF and Mr Roubini look at all losses in US banking, while the tests apply to 19 institutions that hold some 70 per cent of US banking assets.

    布鲁克林研究所的道格拉斯·爱勒特对美国监管人员是如何得出这样的结论提供了一个比较性的分析。他把那些由监管人员所得出的数字与最近发表在“国际金融稳定报告”中的国际货币基金组织中数字,RGE监管中心的,罗瑞而·瑞宾尼的数据及纽约大学所得出的数据进行了对比。他赞同IMF和瑞宾尼先生认为美国银行损失的事实,而这些试验是针对持有美国70%的银行资产的19个机构的。

    Estimated losses for 2009 and 2010 by the US regulators, the IMF and Mr Roubini are $535bn, $321bn and $811bn, respectively. So regulators were noticeably more risk-aware than the IMF, albeit less so than Mr Roubini. Against these losses are set the expected earnings (after dividends) over these years, plus a provision for 2011 losses. Here the regulators estimate earnings at $363bn, against an assumed $210bn for the IMF and Mr Roubini. This means the reduction in capital is estimated at $172bn by the regulators, $111bn by the IMF and $601bn by Mr Roubini. But, after allowing for planned capital-raising and excess earnings in the first quarter of 2009, the final reduction in capital is just $62bn for the regulators and a mere $1bn for the IMF, but as much as $491bn for Mr Roubini.

    美国的政策监管分别对2009年和2010年的金融业损失做了估计,IMF和瑞宾尼先生分别是$5350亿,$3210亿和$8110亿。所以尽管IMF的损失要比瑞宾尼要少,很明显政策监管者比IMF更有风险意识。应对这些损失就是制定这几年的分红后的预期收益,并对2011年的损失做好准备。而监管者估计收益在$3630亿而不是IMF和瑞宾尼所估计的$2100亿。这就意味着,监管者估计的资本减少了$1720亿,而IMF$1110亿,瑞宾尼是$600亿。但,在2009年第一季度批准了计划筹资和过剩收益后,对于监管者最终减少了仅$620亿,而IMF$10亿,但对于瑞宾尼来说,资本确减少了$4910亿。

    There are two important numbers in the above analysis: possible losses, and the buoyancy of earnings. Yet there is a final number of no less significance: how much capital does a bank need? The answer is: how long is a piece of string? Since many of these banks are deemed too big to fail, taxpayers are risk-bearers of last resort. The capital requirement depends partly on how well the government wants to be cushioned against possible losses and partly on how well bond-holders want to be insured against the possibility that government might refuse a rescue.

    以上的分析中涉及到两个重要的数字: 可能的大笔资本损失和收益的快速增长。并且后者也具有重要意义:银行到底需要多少资金?而答案是,这个资金链到底有多长?由于许多银行由于规模太大注定要失败,最后纳税人却要最终为此买单。对于资本的需求一部分处决于政府如何减缓可能的损失,一部分处决于万一政府拒绝提供帮助,债权人利益如何很好得到保障。

    以上四个图表分别描述了从2007年的1月份到09年的5月份,美国商业银行的市场价值变化,美国投资银行的市场价值变化,以及从2000年到2009年相对于市场,美国银行500指数和从1975年到2008年美国在金融信用中,商业银行所占份额的比例走势。

    At the end of 2008, the ratio of total common equity to US banking assets was 3.7 per cent. Without the explicit and implicit insurance provided by government, it would surely have been higher. As the IMF notes, in the mid-1990s, before the leverage boom, the ratio was 6 per cent. In the 19th century, before deposit insurance, it was much higher still.

    2008年底,美国银行资产的总价值比例是3.7%。如果没有政府直接和间接提供的保障,这个比例肯定会更高。IMF的资料显示,90年代中期,在推行杠杆政策之前,这个比例是6%19世纪在有存款保险之前,这个比例还要更高。

    The conclusions are three: first, the government’s exercise is more conservative on losses than that of the IMF, albeit far less so than Mr Roubini’s; second, most of the capital to be raised will come from the earnings of a banking system able to borrow on the favourable terms arranged by the central bank and then to lend more expensively to its customers; and third, the target capital ratios – Tier 1 risk-weighted capital of 6 per cent of assets and Tier 1 common equity capital of 4 per cent – are not especially onerous.

    有三点结论:其一,对于经济的损失,政府所作所为要比IMF国际货币基金组织更要保守,但这又远不及瑞宾尼。其二, 要筹集的大部分资本主要是来自金融业的收益,而金融业能够通过中央银行开出利好的条件又能够借到资金。然后把大量地放贷给银行客户。其三,目标资本率(6%的资产一级风险资本和4%的一级共同价值资产。

    The purpose of the exercise was indeed conservative: to make it credible, though not certain, that the existing banking system and assets can survive the likely battering. This has been done well enough to satisfy the markets. But these banks will also be unable to expand their balance sheet significantly in the near future.

    这一做法确实保守了,但其目的是让人们相信现有金融机构资产能够幸免于难,尽管并不肯定这一点.。而为迎合市场的味口这已做的够好了,但短期内这些银行还是不能很详细解释其财政收支平衡表。

    The biggest question is how far this exercise will help restore the economy. Commercial banks provide only a quarter of financial sector credit in the US, down from close to 40 per cent in the mid-1970s (see chart). Much of the rest came from various forms of securitisation. Unless and until the latter markets reopen fully, private sector credit is likely to be constrained. How far that constraint is binding depends on how far highly leveraged borrowers are willing to borrow, particularly when the collateral against which they borrow has lost value. For this reason, it is the huge stimulus – the least conservative parts of the economic package – that will deliver the recovery. These are also the least upsetting to the interests of powerful lobbies, particularly in finance.

    问题是到底这一举措对于恢复经济发展有多大帮助。美国的商业银行仅提供了四分之一的财政信贷,比70年代中期下降了近40%。剩下的大部分都是由各种安全机构提供的。除非后者的市场(安全机构)重新完全开放,否则私有财务信贷很可能受到限制。而这种限制到底有多大的约束力还要处决于那些平衡借贷者愿意借多长时间,尤其是失去价值的中间借贷。就这一点来讲,经济一揽子计划的保守策略对经济发展也是具有很大的刺激作用的,这会推动经济恢复。但是这也触动了强势游说者们的利益,特别是对那些金融领域的利益相关者。

    More radical approaches – allowing more banks to default, for example – would have increased uncertainty in the short run and so undermined the return to stability Mr Obama craves. But here the president must reckon on a longer-term danger: that the rescued financial system will, in time, start to lay the foundations for another and possibly still bigger financial crisis in the years ahead.

    一些更加激进的措施,例如充许更多的银行不履行职责,短期来看也会越来越多,所以这也会不利于奥巴马政府期望经济恢复稳定思想。但是总统但心的是长期的危险:受到救助的金融系统会为几年后新一轮,可能更大的一场金融危机埋下隐患。

    Ensuring the rescue of a financial system packed even more than before with complex and “too-big-to-fail” institutions may well be the cautious response to this crisis. But it leaves the government with the even more onerous task of imposing effective regulation in future. Unhappily, the record of regulation of generously insured financial systems is extremely poor. The mobilized self-interest of highly rewarded players easily overwhelms the constraints imposed by far less well-rewarded and almost certainly less able regulators.

    确保金融系统的一揽子救助方案主要是针对那些复杂较大的金融机构,这一做法无非是对这场危机的谨慎反应。但是这给政府在未来推行有效的政策变的困难重重。不幸的是,对于政府救助金融业相关政策记录却很少。那些利益驱动的玩家们很容易就会跨越那些由非利益机构和那些非专业的政策制定者们所推行的限制性政策。

    The more the crisis unfolds, the more evident it is that incentives in the financial system were (and are) badly distorted. I sympathise with the conservative approach to crises, but not if it leaves in place the plethora of perverse incentives that created them. At the end of this, then, there will be one big test: will the number of institutions thought “too big to fail” be as large as now and, if so, how will they be controlled? If the answers are still not clear, there will need to be yet more change.

    对危机解释的越透彻,对么金融业的刺激方案误导性的就越明显。我理解对这场危机所采取的保守措施,但是并不理解是否那些措施为制定那些不正当的刺激方案留下了更多的余地。再者,推行了这个措施之后,将面临一大考验,如果那些百年大店继续保持自己在未来的强大实力,将来如何控制它们?如果答案还不明确,就需要更多改变。

  • 第二届世界佛教论谈

    2009-5-08

     第二届世界佛教论坛

    Second Session World Buddhism Forum in Lingshan Wuxi

    佛在灵山不远求

    Do not trouble to take long journey for pilgrim when facing the mountain of Buddhist

    《吉祥颂》演出结束后,十一世班禅额尔德尼·确吉杰布走上舞台,用藏语、汉语和英语祈祷世界和平。

    After the performance of Auspiciousness Ode, Bainqen Erdini Qoigyi Gyaincain, the Eleventh Panchen Lama comes to stage to pray for world peace Tibet, Chinese, and English respectively.  

    灵山胜会

    Great Gathering of Lingshan- the Mountain of Buddhist

    2009328日,江南的早晨,清凉的春雨丝丝拂面,烟波浩淼的太湖,法相庄严的大佛,掀开了灵山梵宫的神秘面纱,恭迎出席第二届世界佛教论坛的逾50个国家和地区的僧侣。

    灵山胜会,是佛教中的典故。相传,佛祖当年在古印度王舍城外的灵山说法,四众弟子,十方诸佛,众如潮,人佛如海,天感花雨,地应雷音,全球佛弟子深心向往,称之为“灵山胜会”。

     

     

    On March 28 in the morning of South of Yangze River in China, cool silky spring rain licking face, ripple vast Taihu lake under the veil of filmy fog, Buddhist Palace comes to present her mysterious face in which sacred grand Buddhist status comes into view, awaiting the Buddhists from over 50 countries and regions to attend the second session world Buddhism Forum. Gathering of Lingshan is a legend of Buddhism. Then It is said that Buddha convened Buddhists and Buddhist followers across the world on on the Lingshan outside of Wagse Castle of ancient India to impart Buddhism power to a of crowd pious Buddha disciples, which shaped a grandeur spectacular picture: the tide pious disciples surrounding a large swarm of Buddhists in flowery saffron, thunderingly loudly reading Buddhism sutras; then Lingshan became the desired place for the Buddhists to come!  

         

    这一天早晨的梵宫,确因四众弟子而生动。梵宫两侧,手捧鲜花香炉的居士们,穿着黄海青,搭着红忏衣的学僧们,组成了世俗社会罕见的仪仗队,口呼“南无本师释迦牟尼佛”,迎候中国佛教协会会长一诚法师,台湾佛光山开山宗长星云法师,香港佛教联合总会会长觉光法师,十一世班禅额尔德尼·确吉杰布,澳门佛教理事会理事长健钊法师,以及南亚国家的僧王们。

     

    The Buddhist Palace of this morning is vigorous with the Buddhist disciples gathering. Along side of the Palace, Buddhist servants holding floral censer in hand and junior monks clad in saffron consist of a uncommon honour guard, hailing in Buddha greeting Master yicheng, president of Buddhism Association of China, Xingyue Master, the first generation Master of Foguangshan of Tai wan, Jueguang Master, Chairman of Buddhism Association of Hong Kong, Bainqen Erdini Qoigyi Gyaincain, the Eleventh Panchen Lama, Managing director of Buddhism Association in Macao, and Master Monks from South Asia.   

    十分钟后,经过特警严格的安检,南方周末记者随与会者步入梵宫。沿廊厅在梵宫中穿行,环顾上下左右,与会者鲜有不瞠目结舌者。

    Ten mintutes later, after strictly checked by special security guard, the correspondent of South Weekend Paper follows participants of forum, steps into the Palace.  Walking along corridor of the Palace, most viewers are surprised by what their eyes catch.  

     

    率先留住与会者脚步的,是“世界佛教传法图”中的“初转法轮图”,讲述公元前588年,菩提树下悟道成佛的释迦牟尼,为最早跟随过他的五位侍从说法剃度,建立第一个僧团的故事。

     

    The first view that drags forum participants steps is the painting Chuzhuan Falun, of that Buddha imparts power of Buddhism in the first time---one of imparting power of Buddhism by Buddha pictures over the world--- which is a descrīption of what Buddha under Buddha Tree that succeed in meditating Buddhism imparts Buddhism power, tonsures to the five first servants and established the first monk organization.     

    从“初转法轮图”,到表现不分国家种族肤色,共沐甘霖法雨的“当代世界佛教图景”,前后12幅巨型油画,勾勒了延绵两千多年,遍及全球各地的“世界佛教传法线路图”。

    除了西方的油画壁画,廊厅中,还有表征中国传统的木雕壁画和刻漆壁画。

    《净》、《信》、《孝》、《和》巨幅木雕壁画,是梵宫木雕壁画的代表作。它们用金丝楠木,用中国传统文化中象征吉祥的图案和花纹,诠释了清净心、信仰、孝道与和谐,强调“佛在人间”,“要学佛,先学做人”。

     

    The amount of twelve giant oil paintings that involve from the Chuzhuan Falun painting that says the birth of Buddhism to the Contemporary World Buddhism picture in which the complexion Buddhist disciples from different nations are learning power of Buddhism together , describe road map of Buddhism development across the world in the past of over 2000 years.

     

    Apart from oil paintings and murals in Western style, in corridor there have woodcarving murals and lacquered fresco in traditional Chinese style.    

     

    Among all paintings “Cleanness” “Faith” “Filialness” “Harmony” four giant woodcarving murals, are the magnum opus of woodcarving murals of the Palaces of Buddhism, made from golden nanmu( a kind of rare lumber) in employment of the various pattern and figure that symbolize auspiciousness in Chinese traditional culture, embody cleanness, faith, filialness and harmony, in stressing a theme: Buddhism in human life, and following Buddhism requires the must of kindness of humanity.

    《般若波罗密多心经》,是刻漆壁画中的经典。这幅巨型书法壁画,其文本来自奉旨翻译的唐玄奘,其篆书来自清代大书法家邓石如刻于扬州大明寺的石碑拓本,其工艺来自纯手工的刻漆贴真金,扬州独有。

     

    “Banrouboluomiduo Buddhism scrīpture” classic of lacquered frescos is a giant calligraphy fresco whose content was the text of the translation of Tang Xuanzang under the order of his emperor---the famous Buddhism academician in Tang Dynasty--- in seals handwriting style of the book of rubbings on stone tablet in Daming temple of Yangzhou city carved by Deng shiru, an eminent calligraphist in Qing Dynasty.  And the fresco is very unique for its craft: lacquered and gold clad.     

    廊厅的尽头,就是灵山梵宫的镇宫之宝,100平方米的琉璃壁画《华藏世界》,描绘了如来佛在华藏世界宣扬妙法的一场胜会,用皇家工艺“花丝镶嵌”而出的壁画,璀璨瑰丽。观赏于供满无数鲜花和水果的壁画前,驻足者惟余惊叹。祭台摆放

     

    A glazed fresco “Tibet Gathering by Buddha” covering 100 square metres that describe the gathering scene of what Buddha impart Buddhism in Huazang Shijie, is the most precious work of the Palace of Buddhism of Lingshan at the end of corridor screen. It is so dazzling and magnificent for its royal ornament flower inlaid style that won all viewers’ great admiration when they appreciates before the sacrifice table on which there put many flowers and fruits.    

    奇迹般从天而降的灵山梵宫,建设速度惊人地快。据说,早在论坛开幕前三天,一些工人还在擦拭一些油画的底座。

     

    Constructing this Palace of Buddhism is extraordinarily fast, like a miracle: erecting suddenly. Even someone saw as early as three days ago opening ceremony of the Forum, constructors brush bottom frame of some oil painting.

    8点半,本报记者进入“圣坛”,以圆形体现佛教平等理念的世界佛教论坛的主会场。当绚丽的帷幕静静地拉开,在敦煌飞天供养图画的背景前,“看到了犹如大唐盛世时期佛教史诗般的画卷,感受到精神信仰的高贵与虔诚。”地震灾区四川什邡罗汉寺住持素全法师在他的博客中说。

    这位虔诚中透着高贵的僧人说:有幸参加,欢喜无限。

     

    At 8:30 PM, the correspondent of our paper came into “chancel” ---the prime meeting place of this world Buddhism forum round-featured with the equal conception of Buddhism.  Along with gorgeous curtain slowly opening, the stage background against the flying fairies of Dunhuang painting came into view. The master Suquan the abbot of Shifang Arhat Temple of Sichuan quake zone acclaimed in his blog statement that was so spectacular as if I saw a Buddhism epic picture in prime time in Tang Dynasty and could experience the nobleness and devoutness of religious belief. And at that time, the pious and noble Buddhist cannot help saying that it is great honor and happy to have this meeting.                

    灵山梵宫的廊厅,陈示着巨幅的油画、木刻和漆刻壁画,圆雕的飞天,以及被称为镇宫之宝的一百平方米的琉璃壁画《华藏世界》。整幅《华藏世界》,共用了15公斤黄金,500公斤白银,镶嵌了超过12万件的珠宝。

     

    In the lobby of the Palace displays giant oil paintings, woodcarving lacquered murals, circular engravre flying fairy and the most precious work covering 1002 metres Huazangshijie that was ornamented in using 15 kg gold, 500kg silver and over 120,000 jewelries.

          

    千僧过堂 Large number of monks dinering together

  • 内需拉动乏力

    2009-5-08

    CHINESE CONSUMPTION IS A DISAPPEARING ACT

    中国消费需求拉动乏力

    In January, a remarkable thing happened: more cars were bought in China, the land of bicycles, than in the US, the land of – well – cars. US annual light vehicle sales skidded below 10m, fewer than in China where January sales ran at 10.7m a year. For those counting on the Chinese consumer to ride to the world's rescue, here, surely, was the news they had been waiting for.

    Unfortunately, those vehicle numbers were not quite what they seemed. Nor – not yet, at least – is the Chinese consumer.

     

    一月份,发生了一件怪事, 一个自行车王国的中国其汽车销量超过了有汽车王国的美国。美国去年轻型汽车的销量跌破了1000万辆,而同期中国的汽车销量略高于美国达到了1070万辆。对于那些指望中国消费者拯救世界的人来说,这无疑是他们一直期盼的消息。遗憾的是,不能单从表面上来看这些数字,对于中国的消费者也是如此至少眼下来说。

     

    It turns out that China and the US count cars differently and that China's numbers were temporarily flattered by the lunar new year. Still, China remains a bright spot in the thickening gloom. Other industries too are counting on the Middle Kingdom, the largest market for television sets and mobile phones, steel and cement. Shiseido, a Japanese cosmetics company, has been racking up 30 per cent Chinese sales growth. Alex Salmond, Scotland's first minister, on a clean-energy-to-whisky sales tour of China this week, revealed there were more cashed-up Chinese than American students in Scottish universities.

     

    事实情况是,中国计算汽车销量的方法与美国有所不同, 而中国这个数字是暂由农历新年的销售旺季所推动的。然而,在当下经济低迷的情况,中国市场仍然可以保持良好的势头。而其它行业一样也在依赖中东市场,中东市场是电视机,手机,钢铁和水泥的最大消费市场。日本化装品公司,“资生堂”在中国的消费市场份额已下降了30%。苏格兰首席大臣,亚历山大,萨尔盟德本周从清洁能源到威士忌的中国销售一行中透露,在苏格兰大学,中国的学生比美国的学生拥有更多的现金去消费。

    The 19th-century Englishman who mused that, if every Chinese lengthened his shirttail by a foot, textile mills would spin year-round, has been replaced by 21st-century westerners hoping that Chinese will step in to buy their sedans and insurance products. But can they?

     

    19世纪的英国人就曾想过,要是每个中国人把他们的衣服加长一尺,纺织厂一年四季都不会停工。而现在这种想法改变了,西方人希望中国人可以买更多他们的轿车和保险产品,但是他们能吗?

    The picture is not easy to decipher. By some measures, Chinese consumers have in fact become relatively less important. In the 1980s, household consumption averaged slightly more than half China's gross domestic product. That proportion fell in the 1990s to 46 per cent, reached 38 per cent by 2005 and is about 35 per cent today. By comparison, in 2007 US household consumption was running at what we now know was an unsustainable 72 per cent of GDP.

    要解释这种现象也不是很容易。按某种标准来衡量,中国消费者实际上已不是很重要了。上世纪80年代,中国的家庭消费额度只是稍稍高于国内生产总值的一半,到了90年代,这个比例已降到了46%,到2005年已降到了38%,现在为止,已降到了35%。相比较而言,2007年,美国的家庭消费已上升到了难以维系的GDP72%

    Andy Rothman, China strategist at CLSA, says people should not get hung up on that comparison. Just as in 1950s Japan, he says, a much bigger share of China's GDP is today going to investment, something that changed in Japan only in the 1960s when consumers began to buy fridges and washing machines. Consumption rates tend to be higher in poorer countries than China where people spend a large part of their income to survive, and richer ones where discretionary spending takes hold.

     

    中国CLSA的战略家,安迪.露斯曼说:不应该做这样的比较。正如上世纪50年代的日本一样,中国现在GDP的很大一部分用于投资了,而日本在60年代的时候,这种情况就改变了,当时消费者开始购买冰箱,冼衣机了。欠发达国家的消费水平要高于中国,在中国收入的很大一部分用来养家糊口了,而富人手里却持有大量可支配的财富。

    Jonathan Garner, emerging markets strategist at Morgan Stanley, is another believer. In his 2005 The Rise of the Chinese Consumer, he predicted that by 2014 Chinese consumption would have risen from 9 per cent of US and 3 per cent of world consumption in 2004 to 37 per cent and 10.5 per cent respectively. By then, he forecast, the Chinese shopper would have displaced the US consumer “as the engine of world growth”. He says his prediction is still on track.

     

    摩根士丹利新兴市场战略家乔那森.戈勒却不认同这一观点。他在2005年的《中国消费者崛起》一书预测到2014年,中国的消费占比将从2004年美国的9%世界消费的4%分别上升到37%10.4%。而现在他又预测,中国的消费者将会取代美国的消费者,作为世界经济发展有引擎,并说现在一切正按照他的预测在发展。

    Nicholas Lardy at the Peterson Institute in Washington is more circumspect. He applauds Beijing's attempt to rebalance a lopsided economy that is too dependent on capital investment and external demand. But so far, it has not worked. Investment probably reached a high of 43.5 per cent of GDP in 2008.

     

    对此,华盛顿彼得森研究院的尼古拉丝.拉迪就比较谨慎。他赞同北京方面正试图重新平衡过于依赖资本投资和外部需求的经济发展结构。但目前为止,这方面的努力还未取得成效。2008年的投资可能已占到了GDP比重的43.5%

    There are several factors holding back the Chinese consumer. First, people have for years witnessed the destruction of the “iron rice bowl”, as once-free health and education systems have been dismantled. Now the government is committed rhetorically – and, increasingly, in practice – to rebuilding the social safety net. But it will be years before people trust the state to look after them, and run down their precautionary savings.

     

    有几个因素阻碍中国消费者消费。首先,多年来他们目睹了打破了铁饭碗,再者,曾经的免费的教育,医疗体系告瓦解。现在政府已承诺建立全面的社会保障体系,并在逐步实施。但这要到多年以后,人民相信国家可以保障他们的生活后,他们才会减少预防性的储蓄。

    Second, most Chinese are what Dragonomics, a research firm, calls “survivors”, whose purchases of basic food and clothing are meaningless for multinationals or global demand. Only about 150m are part of “consuming China”, although this may double to 300m by 2015. Consuming China's median household income is about $6,000, against $45,000 in the US. The owner of a Beijing car does not spend like the owner of a Boston car.

     

    第二,正如龙经研究公司所称的大多数中国人为生存而奔波,他们只购买食品和服装基本必需品,这对于跨国公司或是国际需求来讲没有什么意义。只有1.5亿的人成为“消费中国”的一部分,虽然这个数字到2015年会翻番,达到3亿。消费中国的家庭收入的中值约6000美元,而美国是45000美元。北京的私家车主的消费,是不能和波士顿私家车主同日而语的。

    Finally, China's recent consumption boom has been predicated on rising income, itself a function of strong external demand. Growth should continue at 7-8 per cent, but the days of double-digit expansion may be over. So, rather than accelerate, Chinese household purchases may in fact slow. It turns out that Americans have been paying for everything with credit – even Chinese consumption.

     

    最终,中国近期的消费增长是基于个人收入的增加,后者得益于外部的强劲需求。经济增长速度应该继续保持在7%8%,但是连续两位数的增长的时代已过去了。所以中国的家庭购习事实上并没有增加,反而下降了。结果就是美国在为其信用消费买单,甚至还包括中国的消费。

     

     

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