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政治理论:约翰·梅纳德·凯恩斯

POLITICAL THEORY - John Maynard Keynes

政治理论
约翰·梅纳德·凯恩斯
John Maynard Keynes was a political economist
约翰·梅纳德·凯恩斯是一个政治经济学家
of extraordinary optimism and vision
具有非凡的乐观和远见
who believed that governments have it in their power
他相信政府有能力
to solve some of the greatest ills of capitalism.
解决一些最严重的资本主义弊病
Keynes refused either to believe in communism,
凯恩斯拒绝相信共产主义
or in the utter wisdom of the unfettered free market.
或者彻底贯彻自由放任的市场思维
Instead, he occupied a middle course,
相反 他选取了折中方案
believing that governments could,
相信政府可以
with a judicious injection of money here
通过明确注资
and a rise regulation there, smooth out the peaks
和加强监管 使经济繁荣
and troughs to which all economies seem fatefully prone.
及从衰退中恢复过来
Keynes believed that what chiefly holds back countries
凯恩斯认为阻碍国家发展的主要因素
is corruption, knee-jerk policies, and shortsightedness
是腐败 拍脑门决策 和目光短浅
but that if these three ills are corrected
但如果这三者都得以纠正
then humanity can look forward to an age of incredible and lasting wealth.
那么人类就有希望步入美好的持续繁荣的时代
In a charming essay titled, “Economic Possibilities for Our Grandchildren,” written in 1930,
在1930年 世界处于严重的经济危机中
at the height of the world economic crisis,
此时写了一篇题为《我们后代的经济前景》的迷人文章
Keynes outlined his belief that most severe economic problems could be overcome,
凯恩斯写道:有史以来最严重的经济问题能被克服
and give way to an age
并让位于这样一个时代:
where the chief challenge for human beings
人类面临的主要挑战
would be how to occupy their leisure time in conditions of mass prosperity.
将是如何在空前繁荣中打发他们的休闲时光
For Keynes, economics was not a dull science,
对于凯恩斯来说 经济学不是一门枯燥的科学
It was the tool with which to bring about economic security for all.
它是能为所有人带来经济保障的工具
Keynes’ background was well-to-do,
凯恩斯出身富裕
and throughout his life, he remained firmly a part of the British establishment.
他的一生始终与英国的建制联系紧密
Educated at Eton and at Cambridge University,
在伊顿公学和剑桥大学接受教育
Keynes was unusual for the breadth of his artistic and literary interests.
凯恩斯对艺术和文学有着与众不同的广泛兴趣
Throughout his life,
在他的一生中
he maintained friendships with some of the most brilliant artists and scholars of the twentieth century.
与一些二十世纪最杰出的艺术家和学者保持着友谊
and was an integral part of the Bloomsbury Group
他是由作家和知识分子构成的
of writers and intellectuals.
布鲁姆斯伯里团体中不可或缺的一员
Virginia Woolf, for example, was one of his best friends.
弗吉尼亚·伍尔夫 是他最好的朋友之一
As the Bloomsbury Group recognized,
正如布鲁姆斯伯里团体所认识到的
good economics is as fundamental to wellbeing as good painting or literature,
良好的经济状况 同优秀的绘画和文学一样是幸福的基础
and at a deep sense, not fundamentally different in its search for the wellsprings of fulfilment,
且根本上 它们在探寻成就来源的路上殊途同归
and its attention to human error and blindness.
也同样关注人为错误与盲目
Keynes’ masterpiece was written in 1936.
凯恩斯的代表作写于1936年
The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money.
《就业 利息和货币通论》
In this work, Keynes set out to rethink the causes of unemployment,
在这部作品中 凯恩斯开始重新思考失业成因
in the hope of reducing new solutions
从而找出新方法
to this intractable problem of the 1930s,
来解决这个20世纪30年代的棘手问题
and of capitalism more generally.
以及更广泛意义上的资本主义
Classical economics give us three reasons why unemployment exists.
古典经济学给了我们失业存在的三个原因
Firstly, and most obviously, workers are temporarily unemployed when they move jobs.
首先 也是最明显的 工人在换工作时会暂时失业
Secondly, individuals might simply elect not to work,
其次 个人可能会选择不工作
particularly if they can support themselves through some form of welfare payment.
尤其是当福利保障足够他们花销时
But thirdly, and most interestingly,
但是第三 也是最值得注意的一点是
unemployment arises when wages are higher than what employers can afford.
当工资高于雇主承受能力时 就会出现失业
In the classical model,
在经典模型中
it’s assumed that a free market will correct this last course automatically,
自由市场会自动解决最后一种失业
and that the supply of labor and the demand for labor
劳动力的供给和需求
will spontaneously come into equilibrium.
会自发的达到平衡
ensuring something approaching full employment.
确保情形靠近充分就业
Only, if some outside force were to exert itself on the market–
只有在外力作用在市场上时
for example, if governments set a minimum wage
例如 政府设定最低工资标准
that artificially inflates wages,
人为增加工资
or if trade unions organized workers
或是在工会组织下
so that they refused to take lower wages in a declining market,
工人拒绝在经济衰退时降低工资
only under these conditions would equilibrium not be found.
只有在这些情况下 劳动力的供给和需求会难以达到均衡
But Keynes took issue with this classical theory.
但是凯恩斯对此有异议
In the 1930s, there were huge numbers of people out of work,
20世纪30年代 失业人数众多
as many as 3 million in Britain and 15 million in the United States of America.
英国有300万 美国有1500万之多
These numbers were just too great
如此庞大的数字
to shrug off as the result of people being between jobs or simply idle.
难以用“换工作” 或者“闲着”来解释
And to Keynes’ way of thinking,
按照凯恩斯的想法
this level of unemployment was also too great
如此大规模的失业
to be explained by the interference of trade unions,
也难以用工会干涉来解释
given that, during the years of the Great Depression,
鉴于在大萧条时期
high unemployment had severely curbed union power.
高失业率严重抑制了工会的权力
For Keynes, the real problem of unemployment
对凯恩斯来说 失业的真正问题
lay in a lack of demand.
在于需求不足
This was not something that economists had ever properly focused on,
经济学家从未正视这一方面
but it became the linchpin of Keynes’ theories.
但它成为了凯恩斯理论的关键
Classical economic theory had simply assumed that
古典经济理论只是假设
demand for goods would return by itself
一旦工资和劳动力需求达到平衡
once wages and labor requirements had equalized.
对商品的需求便会恢复
But Keynes now famously declared,
凯恩斯有句名言
“In the long run, we are all dead.”
“长远来看 我们都死了”
In other words, this process might simply take too long.
换句话说 这个过程可能过于漫长
Keynes argued that it was insufficient for economists and policymakers
凯恩斯认为 如果经济学家和政策制定者
simply to advise people to accept suffering in the short and medium term,
只是建议人们接受中短期的煎熬
secure in the knowledge that at the end of the storm, the sea would return to calm.
想着风雨之后见彩虹 是不够的
What was needed was intervention in the economy, by government,
需要政府进行经济干预
in order to break the cycle of economic depression,
从而打破经济萧条的周期
and thereby restore prosperity.
恢复繁荣
Traditionally, in an economic downturn,
传统上 在经济低迷时期
governments would turn to matters of supply to provide an economic boost,
政府会寻求从供给方面 刺激经济
encourage growth, and create employment.
鼓励增长 创造就业
For example, if interest rates were reduced,
例如 如果降低利率
that this should encourage savers to invest their money,
这样理应能鼓励储蓄者投资
providing cash either for existing businesses to expand,
为现有企业提供现金来扩张
or else for entrepreneurs to establish new ventures.
或是为新企业提供启动资金
However, Keynes now declared
然而 凯恩斯现在宣称
there might exist at a persistent belief that demand was so low
人们或许会长久认为 需求如此之低
that there was little point in supplying goods.
供应货物毫无意义
In this case, traditional tools of promoting economic recovery would be useless,
这种情况下 促进经济复苏的传统方法是无用的
and something else would be required.
还需要其他东西
If market mechanisms were unable to stimulate economic recovery,
如果市场机制不能刺激经济复苏
then, Keynes now argued, it was the job of the state to step in to create demand,
那么 凯恩斯现在认为 国家的工作是介入创造需求
by running, if necessary, a very large budget deficit in order to create jobs.
如有必要 通过巨大的财政赤字来创造就业机会
Practically, this could be done by raising loans
实际上 这可以通过筹集贷款来实现
and using the money to finance vast public works that could be brought on line relatively quickly.
利用这笔资金 资助可以相对短期落地的大型公共工程
These might include building roads or railways,
这包括修建道路或铁路
or else investment in other infrastructure
或投资于其他基础设施
that would not only create work for people,
不仅能为人们创造工作岗位
but which would leave a useful legacy for private enterprise.
还将为私企留下宝贵财富
Governments should, for Keynes, act as the primary shopper in the land,
对凯恩斯而言 政府应该成为主要购买者
creating demand until more widespread sources off-demand can return.
创造需求 直到更广泛的需求来源能够恢复
Keynes criticized governments for the way they typically respond to downturns.
凯恩斯批评各国政府应对经济衰退的惯用方法
Their immediate (and understandable) impulse is just to rein in spending.
他们直接的(可以理解的)反应就是缩减开支
After all, this is what a household would do when money is no longer coming in.
毕竟 一个家庭没收入了就是这么做的
But what is wise at the level of the household
但是 当适用于家庭的方法
is often catastrophic when applied at the level of the nation.
放到了国家层面 往往会是灾难性的
Nations are not households in all kinds of ways,
“国”在各种意义上都不是“家”
and Keynes needed to persuade his audiences
凯恩斯需要说服他的听众
to act contrary to their simpler, more basic instincts.
违背他们更简单 更基本的本能
Reining in spending when an economy is in decline always worsens the very problem it’s meant to solve.
当经济衰退时 缩减开支不过是抱薪救火
One obvious objection to Keynes’ focus on government spending
凯恩斯对政府支出方面的一个明显反对意见
was the question as to who should pay for the loans.
便是“谁为贷款买单?”这个问题
By creating the debt, would not the problem be simply postponed to another day,
通过创造债务 难道问题不会被简单地延后
rather than solved?
而没有被解决?
Here, Keynes applied his theory of what became known as the “Multiplier Effect.”
在这里 凯恩斯应用了他的“乘数效应”理论
In the first instance, by creating jobs through public works,
首先 通过公共工程创造就业机会
governments would save some of the money they would’ve otherwise spent on unemployment benefits.
政府会节省下来些本来要花在失业救济上的钱
Secondly, the increase in the number of people in employment would create additional spending power,
其次 就业人数的增加将产生额外的消费能力
and therefore boost the economic and tax receipts.
从而提高经济和税收收入
There would be an indirect effect on businesses
为公共工程项目服务的机会的出现
as opportunities to service public works programs became available.
会对企业产生间接影响
The result would be increased tax revenue from businesses, as they began to once again prosper.
其结果是 随着企业开始再次繁荣 税收将会增加
In turn, these receipts would then pay off the debt created by the initial expenditure.
反过来 这些收入将偿还当初支出所造成的债务
That was the Multiplier Effect.
这就是乘数效应
Keynes’ ability to conceive of grand macroeconomic architecture
凯恩斯构思宏伟宏观经济架构的能力
put him in a high demand during the Second World War.
使他在二战期间非常受欢迎
When he went to the Treasury to work as an advisor,
他在财政部当顾问
raised the peerage in 1942 as Baron Keynes of Tilton in the County of Sussex,
在1942年受封为苏塞克斯郡蒂尔顿的凯恩斯男爵
Lord Keynes led the British delegation to
凯恩斯爵士率领英国代表团出席
the Bretton Woods Conference in the United States,
在美国举行的布雷顿森林会议
at which the Allied nations hammered out post-war economic policy.
同盟国在此制定战后经济政策
Not only did Keynes believe that national governments could successfully manage economies,
凯恩斯不仅相信各国政府可以有效地管理经济
but Keynes also believed that a global system of economic organization was possible.
他还认为 全球性的经济组织体系是可行的
He argued that, for the purpose of global trade,
他认为 为了全球贸易
countries should subscribe to the creation of a new international standardized unit of account:
各国应该设立一个国际统一的货币单位:
the Bancor.
班科
Through a complex system of accounting,
通过一个复杂的会计系统
the adoption of the pseudo-currency
这种超主权货币
would allow an internationally-recognized organization to impose fines on countries,
使国际组织有权力对各国处以罚款
in order to discourage them from running large trade deficits or surpluses.
以阻止它们出现巨额贸易逆差或顺差
Such a system would help to smooth out peaks and troughs in international trade,
以此消除国际贸易中的波动
and, not coincidentally, it would also benefit countries like Britain
不出意外 它会惠及像英国这样
who had, because of the cost of the War, had low reserves of gold.
被战争榨干了黄金储备的国家
It was both a brilliant and self-interested idea in equal measure.
这是一个既聪明又自私的提案
But, ultimately, the Bancor did not come about.
但最终 班科没有被采纳
The United States, which was effectively bankrolling global post-war economic reconstruction,
为战后全球经济重建提供大量资金的美国
ran large trade surpluses
拥有巨额贸易顺差
and had no intention of accepting limitations on these.
并且无意接受这些限制
But several of Keynes’ other proposals,
但是凯恩斯的其他提案
such as the establishment of the World Bank, and the International Monetary Fund
像成立世界银行与国际货币基金组织
to oversee and encourage world trade, were accepted,
以监督和鼓励全球贸易 则被采纳
and have dramatically changed the world.
并极大地改变了世界
Testimony to Keynes’ belief that
印证了凯恩斯
national and super-national economic planning is both necessary and possible.
“国家和超国家经济规划 既必要也可行”的观点
The strain of the Bretton Woods negotiations were immense upon Keynes.
布雷顿森林谈判给凯恩斯带来了巨大压力
In 1946, aged only 62, Keynes died of
1946年 年仅62岁的凯恩斯死于
complications from a series of heart attacks.
一系列心脏病发作引起的并发症
Yet his legacy lived on.
但他的影响仍在
In the thirty years or so after the Second World War,
在二战后的30年左右
Keynesian policies were adopted across the capitalist world.
凯恩斯主义政策遍布资本主义世界
Economies saw record lows of unemployment, and record high levels of economic growth.
失业率创下历史新低 经济增长率创下历史新高
Keynes’ ideas became the new orthodoxy,
凯恩斯的观点成为了新的正统
and were particularly attractive to the political left.
对政治左派特别有吸引力
By the 1970s, however, critics of Keynes’ ideas,
然而到了20世纪70年代 凯恩斯观点的批评者们
notably, Friedrich Hayek and Milton Friedman
尤其是是弗里德里希·哈耶克和米尔顿·弗里德曼
were gaining ground with politicians in countries like the United States and Britain.
在英美等国的政客中越来越受欢迎
They argued for small estate, free markets,
他们主张小产业 自由市场
and a reduction in regulation of capitalist enterprise.
以及减少对资本主义企业的监管
At the same time, Britain and the United States
同时 英国和美国
began to experience high inflation alongside high unemployment,
开始经历高通胀和高失业率
known as “stagflation.”
被称为“滞胀”
This phenomenon could not be explained by Keynesian economics,
凯恩斯经济学无法解释这种现象
and Keynes’ ideas came to be discredited,
凯恩斯的思想开始受到质疑
giving way to those of the neoliberals.
让位给新自由主义者
Nevertheless, the financial crisis of 2008
然而 2008年的金融危机
jolted policymakers into considering alternatives to neoliberal thinking.
促使决策者考虑新自由主义思想的替代方案
When the global economy spiralled into decline,
当全球经济螺旋式下滑时
rather than wait for the market to correct itself,
与其等待市场自我调整
the G20 nations announced an economic stimulus package
20国集团宣布了一揽子经济刺激方案
of around 2% of gross domestic product to stimulate growth.
规模约为国内生产总值的2% 以刺激经济增长
As one critic of Keynes wryly conceded,
正如一位凯恩斯的批评者嘲讽式地承认
“I guess everyone is a Keynesian in a foxhole.”
“我猜每个人都是散兵坑里的凯恩斯主义者”
To be sure, Keynes’ ideas need to be modified
诚然 凯恩斯的观点需要修改
to suit the conditions of the contemporary world,
以适应当今世界形势
but Keynes would approve.
不过想必凯恩斯也会赞成
His was not a static or dogmatic understanding of economics.
他对经济的理解并非一成不变或教条式的
After all, when asked why, in the 1930s,
毕竟 当被问及在20世纪30年代
he had altered some of the positions on economic policy he had previously held,
他为什么改变了先前在经济政策上的一些立场时
Keynes famously answered,
凯恩斯有一著名回应
“When the facts change, I alter my conclusions. What do you do, sir?”
“当事实改变时 我更改我的结论 你会怎么做呢?”

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政治经济,凯恩斯主义

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qtAeINU3FKM

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