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对华贸易让美国人赔了多少?

更新时间:2016-3-16 10:42:18 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

On Trade, Angry Voters Have a Point
对华贸易让美国人赔了多少?

Were the experts wrong about the benefits of trade for the American economy?

专家们把贸易对美国经济的好处弄错了?

The nation’s working class will have another opportunity to demonstrate its political clout Tuesday night, as primary voters go to the polls in Illinois and Ohio, Rust Belt states that have suffered intensely from the loss of good manufacturing jobs. Last week, the insurrection handed Michigan’s Democratic primary to Bernie Sanders while continuing to buoy the insurgent Republican candidacy of Donald Trump.

随着伊利诺伊州和俄亥俄州的初选选民前往投票站,这两个丢失了大量就业机会的传统工业州的美国工人阶级周二晚将再次有机会展示他们的政治影响力。上周,密歇根州的造反选民把民主党初选的胜利送给了伯尼·桑德斯(Bernie Sanders),同时继续保持了非正统的唐纳德·特朗普(Donald Trump)在共和党总统候选人中的领先地位。

Voters’ anger and frustration, driven in part by relentless globalization and technological change, may not propel either candidate to the presidency. But it is already having a big impact on America’s future, shaking a once-solid consensus that freer trade is, necessarily, a good thing.

虽然部分由于全球化和技术变革所导致的选民愤怒和沮丧,可能不会让这两名候选人中的任何一位成为总统。但这种情绪已经对美国的未来产生了很大的影响,它动摇了一个曾经坚定的共识,既自由贸易必定是一件好事。

“The economic populism of the presidential campaign has forced the recognition that expanded trade is a double-edged sword,” wrote Jared Bernstein, former economic adviser to Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr.

“总统竞选活动中的经济民粹主义迫使人们认识到,不断扩大的贸易是一把双刃剑,”副总统小约瑟夫·R·拜登(Joseph R. Biden Jr.)的前经济顾问贾里德·伯恩斯坦(Jared Bernstein)写道。

What seems most striking is that the angry working class — dismissed so often as myopic, unable to understand the economic trade-offs presented by trade — appears to have understood what the experts are only belatedly finding to be true: The benefits from trade to the American economy may not always justify its costs.

看来最引人注目的是,常常被人认为是短视的、无法全面了解贸易所代表的经济权衡的愤怒的工人阶级,似乎早明白了专家们迟来的真理发现:贸易给美国经济带来的好处也许并不总能证明其代价的正当性。

In a recent study, three economists — David Autor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, David Dorn at the University of Zurich and Gordon Hanson at the University of California, San Diego — raised a profound challenge to all of us brought up to believe that economies quickly recover from trade shocks. In theory, a developed industrial country like the United States adjusts to import competition by moving workers into more advanced industries that can successfully compete in global markets.

在最近的一项研究中,三位经济学家,麻省理工学院的戴维·奥托尔 (David Autor)、苏黎世大学的戴维·多恩 (David Dorn),以及加州大学圣迭哥分校的戈登·汉森(Gordon Hanson),对我们的教育让我们所有人都相信是正确的理论提出了深刻的挑战,该理论认为一个经济体会从贸易冲击中迅速恢复过来。从理论上讲,像美国这样的工业发达国家,应该通过把劳动力转移到能在全球市场上竞争的更先进的产业来应对出口竞争。

They examined the experience of American workers after China erupted onto world markets some two decades ago. The presumed adjustment, they concluded, never happened. Or at least hasn’t happened yet. Wages remain low and unemployment high in the most affected local job markets. Nationally, there is no sign of offsetting job gains elsewhere in the economy. What’s more, they found that sagging wages in local labor markets exposed to Chinese competition reduced earnings by $213 per adult per year.

他们研究了大约二十年前中国突然出现在世界市场上之后的美国工人的经历。他们的结论是,理论上该出现的调整从未发生。或者至少还没有发生。在受影响最大的本地就业市场,工资持续上不去,失业率高居不下。从全国来看,也没有迹象表明其他经济领域能提供就业增长来抵消制造业的失业。更重要的是,他们发现,暴露在中国竞争下的当地劳动力市场上的工资下降,每年让每个成年人减少了213美元的收入。

In another study they wrote with Daron Acemoglu and Brendan Price from M.I.T., they estimated that rising Chinese imports from 1999 to 2011 cost up to 2.4 million American jobs.

在另一份他们与麻省理工学院的达隆·阿齐默鲁(Daron Acemoglu)和布兰登·普莱斯(Brendan Price)合写的研究报告中,他们估计,1999年至2011年累计从中国进口商品的成本是高达240万美国人的就业机会。

“These results should cause us to rethink the short- and medium-run gains from trade,” they argued. “Having failed to anticipate how significant the dislocations from trade might be, it is incumbent on the literature to more convincingly estimate the gains from trade, such that the case for free trade is not based on the sway of theory alone, but on a foundation of evidence that illuminates who gains, who loses, by how much, and under what conditions.”

“这些结果应该引起我们重新思考贸易带来的短期和中期效益,”他们提出。“由于未能预见贸易造成的错位可能如此严重,文献有责任为贸易所带来的好处给出更有说服力的估计,让赞成自由贸易的人不只靠理论的根据,也有证据基础表明谁受益、谁吃亏,各是多少,在什么条件下。”

Global trade offers undeniable benefits. It helped pull hundreds of millions of Chinese out of poverty in a matter of a few decades, an unparalleled feat. It ensured Apple could benefit from China’s ample supply of cheap labor. Consumers around the world gained better-priced, better-made goods.

全球贸易带来了不可否认的好处。它帮助让数亿中国人在短短几十年里摆脱了贫困,这是一个无与伦比的壮举。它保证了苹果公司可以受益于中国充分的廉价劳动力供给。让世界各地的消费者得到价格更优惠、更好的制造产品。

Still, though trade may be good for the country over all — after netting out winners and losers — the case for globalization based on the fact that it helps expand the economic pie by 3 percent becomes much weaker when it also changes the distribution of the slices by 50 percent, Mr. Autor argued. And that is especially true when the American political system has shown no interest in compensating those on the losing side.

虽然如此,但奥托尔提供证据表示,尽管在考虑了谁赢谁输之后, 贸易对一个国家在整体上有好处,但当考虑到它把蛋糕的分配改变了50%之后,支持贸易帮助全球经济蛋糕增长了3%的证据就比较弱了。而且当美国的政治体制对补偿在这种贸易中失利的一方表现得没有兴趣时,情况尤其是这样。

The impact of China’s great leap into the market economy — which drew hundreds of millions of impoverished peasants into the manufacturing sector, mostly making goods for export to the United States and other wealthy nations — is waning. China’s wages are rising fast. Its exports and economy are slowing.

中国大步跨入市场经济的影响正在减弱,中国的市场经济曾经吸引了上亿的贫困农民进入制造业,他们主要为美国和其他富裕国家制造出口产品。中国的工资水平正在快速升高。中国的出口和经济正在放缓。

Trade with other parts of the world has not been as disruptive. For all the criticism of Nafta, most economists assess its impact on American workers as modest. Trade flows with Mexico were smaller and more balanced than those with China. American manufacturing employment remained fairly stable in the years after Nafta came into force in 1994, plummeting only after China entered the World Trade Organization in 2001 and gained consistent access to markets in the United States.

中国与世界其他地方的贸易没有如此之大的破坏性。尽管有对北美自由贸易协定的种种批评,但大多数经济学家评估其对美国工人的影响并不太大。美国与墨西哥的贸易往来,相对其与中国的贸易往来要小得多,也更平衡。美国制造业就业人数,在北美自由贸易协定于1994年生效后的多年里一直保持相对稳定,只是在中国2001年加入世界贸易组织、获得稳定进入美国市场的许可后,才大幅度减少。

The Chinese export onslaught, however, left a scar on the American working class that has not healed. That disproportionate impact suggests Washington officialdom might do well to reassess its approach to future trade liberalization. Most important, it points to reconsidering how policy makers deal with trade’s distributional consequences.

但是,中国出口带来的冲击给美国工人阶级造成的创伤尚未痊愈。这种不成比例的影响提醒华盛顿的官员们,也许应该改变其在未来贸易自由化方面的做法。最重要的是,它指明需重新考虑政策制定者应该如何处理贸易分配后果的问题。

It doesn’t mean walling off the United States from the rest of the world, but it does mean learning from the experience of other advanced nations that had a much healthier response to China’s rise.

这并不意味在美国与世界之间架起藩篱,但这确实意味着应该借鉴其他一些发达国家的经验。对于中国的崛起,这些国家做出了适宜得多的回应。

Germany, for example, not only received a surge of Chinese imports, but also experienced an onslaught of imports from Eastern European countries after the collapse of the Soviet bloc. But it managed to maintain a more balanced trade because German manufacturers increased their exports to all these countries too, offsetting the job losses from import competition.

德国就是一个例子,它不仅经历了中国进口的激增,也经受了苏联集团解体之后来自东欧国家进口的冲击。但它仍然保持着较为良好的贸易平衡,因为德国生产商也增加了面向所有这些国家的出口,抵消了进口竞争造成的就业损失。

Mr. Autor suggests that Americans’ low savings rate was a big part of the story, coupled with foreigners’ appetite for accumulating dollar assets, which helped keep American interest rates low and the dollar strong, in that way fueling a persistent trade deficit.

奥托尔认为,美国人的低储蓄率是一个重要因素,再加上外国人倾向于囤积美元资产,帮助保持了美国的低利率水平和美元的坚挺,进一步推动了贸易赤字的居高不下。

But other factors were at work. Robert Gordon of Northwestern University suggested to me that Germany’s highly skilled workers were harder to replace with cheaper Chinese labor, limiting though not totally eliminating outsourcing. Germany’s stronger labor unions also put up more of a fight.

然而,也有其他因素在发挥作用。西北大学(Northwestern University)的罗伯特·戈登(Robert Gordon)对我说,德国的高技能工人比较难以用廉价的中国劳动力来替代,因此虽然没有彻底避免外包,却也限制了外包的规模。而且德国的工会也更强势,更善于坚持斗争。

Washington played its part, too. In their new book “Concrete Economics” (Harvard Business Review Press), Stephen S. Cohen and J. Bradford DeLong of the University of California, Berkeley suggest that ultimately, it was the fault of American policy choices.

华盛顿亦在其中扮演了角色。加州大学伯克利分校的史蒂芬·S·科恩(Stephen S. Cohen)和J·布拉德福特·德隆(J. Bradford DeLong)在新书《混凝土经济学》(Concrete Economics,哈佛商业评论出版社发行)中表示,究其根源,这要归咎于美国的政策选择。

The United States might have leaned against China’s export-led strategy, they argue, perhaps by insisting more forcefully that Beijing let its currency rise as its trade surplus swelled. It might have tried to foster the cutting-edge industries of the future, as government had done so many times before, encouraging the shift from textiles to jumbo jets and from toys to semiconductors.

二人认为,美国本来可以对中国的出口导向型策略施加反作用力,方法或许是,在中国贸易顺差膨胀之际,更强烈地坚持北京让人民币升值。它本来也可以努力扶持未来的尖端行业,就像政府之前多次做过的那样,鼓励从纺织品转向大型喷气式客机,从玩具转向半导体。

What Washington did, instead, was hitch the nation’s future to housing and finance. But Wall Street, instead of spreading prosperity, delivered the worst recession the world had seen since the 1930s. Even at best, they write, the transformation of banking and finance has “produced nothing (or exceedingly little) of value.”

但华盛顿的做法却是把国家的未来和住房和金融绑在一起。而华尔街不仅没有让繁荣惠及众人,还引发了上世纪30年代以来全球最严重的经济衰退。在他们笔下,即使从最好的方面来看,银行和金融业的发展也“没有产生任何价值(或者产生的价值微乎其微)”。

So where should policy makers go from here?

那么,决策者们应该何去何从呢?

There are no easy answers. Tearing up existing trade agreements and retreating behind high tariff barriers — as Mr. Trump, and perhaps Mr. Sanders, would have it — would be immensely unproductive. It would throw a wrench into the works of a wobbly world economy. And reneging on international treaties would vastly complicate the international coordination needed to combat climate change.

答案不会很简单。撕毁现有的贸易协定、躲回高关税壁垒的后面——就像特朗普,或许还有桑德斯主张的那样——极度缺乏建设性。世界经济本来就不稳定,这种做法相当于落井下石。而且,如果违背了国际条约,应对气候变化所需的国际协调也会变得极为复杂。

But in any future trade liberalization — including the Obama’s administration’s pending Trans-Pacific Partnership deal, if it is to go forward at all — policy makers must be much more careful about managing the costs. Mr. Autor suggests any further deals to increase trade should be gradual, to give much more time for exposed companies and their workers to retool and shift into other jobs and sectors.

不过,在未来的任何贸易自由化举措中——包括奥巴马政府倡导的尚未获得批准的《跨太平洋伙伴关系协定》(TPP),如果还会继续推进的话——决策者必须更加重视管理成本。奥托尔认为,任何进一步增加贸易的协议,都应该采取循序渐进的做法,为面临风险的企业及员工留出更多的时间来改组转型,进入其他工作岗位和部门。

Perhaps most important, the new evidence from trade suggests American policy makers cannot continue to impose all the pain on the nation’s blue-collar workers if they are not going to provide a stronger safety net.

也许最重要的是,贸易领域的新证据表明,美国决策者如果不打算提供更有力的福利保障,就不能一再把所有痛苦都转嫁到美国蓝领工人身上。

That might have been justified if the distributional costs of trade were indeed small and short-lived. But now that we know they are big and persistent, it looks unconscionable.

倘若贸易分配成本确实很小很短暂,可能那还说得过去,但是现在我们已经知道,这些成本既庞大又持久,此事看起来就不甚合理了。

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