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路易斯安那购地的历史

The historical audacity of the Louisiana Purchase - Judy Walton

你听说过托马斯·杰斐逊
Have you heard the one about Thomas Jefferson
以及路易斯安那购地案吗?
and the Louisiana Territory?
托马斯·杰斐逊是《独立宣言》的起草人
Thomas Jefferson, author of The Declaration of Independence,
他并不喜欢1787年颁布的宪法
was not a fan of the new constitution presented in 1787.
他很担心
He was very worried
这部宪法授予
that The Constitution gave too much power
新成立的联邦政府过多的权力
to the new, national government,
而没有把足够的权力给予各州人民
and not enough power to the states,
即所谓的“大政府”问题
an issue known as “big government”.
当他的朋友 詹姆斯·麦迪逊(美国前总统)
Jefferson only reluctantly agreed to support it
承诺会在宪法获批后提议一项人权法案
when his friend, James Madison,
杰斐逊才勉强同意支持宪法
promised to propose a bill of rights after it was ratified.
但杰斐逊对“大政府”的担忧并未消除
But Jefferson’s fears about big government did not go away.
例如 财政部长亚历山大·汉密尔顿
For example, Secretary of the Treasury, Alexander Hamilton,
在1790年提议建立一个中央银行
proposed a national bank in 1790,
而杰斐逊知道
and Jefferson knew there was no provision in The Constitution
宪法中并没有允许这样做的条款
to permit such a thing.
汉密尔顿认为这是一种隐含的权力
Hamilton claimed some sort of implied powers mumbo-jumbo.
虽然宪法中确实没有直接写明
Sure, it wasn’t written in The Constitution,
但却暗示允许这样做
but The Constitution implied that it could be done.
但杰斐逊不认可他的说法
But, Jefferson wasn’t buying it.
尽管如此 汉密尔顿和华盛顿总统
Nonetheless, the bank was established
还是建立了中央银行
by Hamilton and President Washington.
1801年 杰斐逊宣誓就任总统
When Jefferson was sworn in as President in 1801,
他保证要缩减
he pledged to reduce the size and scope
联邦政府的规模和职权
of the national government.
然而他并未如愿
But, of course, things didn’t go exactly as he had planned.
在杰斐逊眼皮底下 西班牙秘密地把路易斯安娜领土
Spain secretly transferred the Louisiana Territory to France
移交给了法国
right beneath Jefferson’s nose.
当国会发现这事后
When Congress found out,
议员们迅即与法国协商
they quickly began discussions with France
花两百万美元购买一块
to buy a piece of the territory
沿着密西西比河的路易斯安娜土地
along the Mississippi River for about $2 million.
但这有个小问题
But, there was one little problem:
那就是杰斐逊知道宪法中没有
Jefferson knew there was no provision
写明关于政府有权购买外国领土的条款
in The Constitution to buy foreign territory.
这样 一个严格奉行“法无授权不可做”主义的人该怎么办呢
So what was a strict constructionist to do?
首先 他试图修改宪法
First, he tried to get an amendment to The Constitution passed
以明确写明允许购买外国土地
that would expressly permit the purchase,
但国会并不愿意这样做
but Congress wasn’t willing to do it.
随后 美国的谈判代表未经允许
Then, without permission, the U.S. negotiators in France
便与法国达成了用1500万美元购买
cut a deal for all of the territory
路易斯安娜所有领土的协议
for a cool $15 million dollars.
新增的领土使美国的国土面积增加了一倍
That new land doubled the size of the nation!
面对这种情况 杰斐逊很纠结
Now Jefferson was really stuck.
他明白对国家来说 这块领土的购买是巨大的收获
He knew that the territory would be a great acquisition for the country,
可以为农民和移民提供大量土地
providing lots of new land for farmers and other settlers,
但要如何证明其合法性呢?
but how could he constitutionally justify it?
最后 杰斐逊只得援引他的老对手
In the end, Jefferson turned to the argument
亚历山大·汉密尔顿的观点
used by his old foe Alexander Hamilton.
他宣称政府购买外国土地的权利
He claimed that the power to purchase the territory
隐含在联邦宪法的授权中
is implied in The Constitution’s treaty-making power.
而这一观点
This was the exact argument
正是他十年前所嘲弄的
that he had mocked openly a decade before,
现在杰斐逊总统不得不放下自尊援引之前反对的观点
so it must have crushed his pride to have to use it.
更重要的是
But more importantly,
他可能关于“大政府”问题上演了一个最大的政治闹剧
he may have committed the biggest big government play ever!
这是多么具有讽刺意味啊!
How ironic is it
“大政府”的最大反对者杰斐逊
that one of the biggest opponents of big government
使这个年轻国家的面积增加了一倍
doubled the size of the young country
而这样做却恰恰公开质疑了他“法无授权不可做”的原则
and did so while openly questioning its constitutionality?
以1500万美元购买路易斯安娜
At $15 million,
即一英亩土地只需三美分
which is about three cents an acre,
这次收购被人们称做
it has been called by many
美国历史上
the greatest real estate deal
最伟大的地产交易
in the history of the United States.

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