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来自中国的贸易冲击让美国选民左右转

更新时间:2016-4-27 9:57:28 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

Where Jobs Are Squeezed by Chinese Trade, Voters Seek Extremes
来自中国的贸易冲击让美国选民左右转

COURTLAND, Ala. — In this forlorn Southern town whose once-humming factories were battered in recent years by a flood of Asian imports, Rhonda Hughes, 43, is a fervent supporter of Donald Trump. Her 72-year old mother is equally passionate about Senator Bernie Sanders.

阿拉巴马州考特兰——这是一个荒凉的南方小镇,近年来,由于产自亚洲的进口商品大量涌入,镇上原本喧嚣忙碌的工厂受到了重创。43岁的小镇居民朗达·休斯(Rhonda Hughes)是唐纳德·特朗普(Donald Trump)的狂热支持者。她72岁的母亲则对参议员伯尼·桑德斯(Senator Bernie)抱有同样的热忱。

Disenchantment with the political mainstream is no surprise. But research to be unveiled this week by four leading academic economists suggests that the damage to manufacturing jobs from a sharp acceleration in globalization since the turn of the century has contributed heavily to the nation’s bitter political divide.

对政治主流感到幻灭并不令人意外。但即将由四位著名学院派经济学家在本周揭晓的研究结果显示,美国之所以出现严重的政治割裂,在很大程度上是因为20世纪末、21世纪初以来明显加快的全球化进程让制造业的工作岗位出现锐减。

Ms. Hughes avoids discussing the election with her mother, but their neighbor Benjamin Green, 83, knows just what Washington needs. “It’ll take a junkyard dog to straighten this country out,” he said.

休斯总是避免和她母亲讨论大选话题,但她们83岁的邻居本杰明·格林(Benjamin Green)完全知道华盛顿需要什么。“只有一个凶悍的家伙才能理顺这个国家,”他说。

Cross-referencing congressional voting records and district-by-district patterns of job losses and other economic trends between 2002 and 2010, the researchers found that areas hardest hit by trade shocks were much more likely to move to the far right or the far left politically.

通过交叉参照2002至2010年间的国会表决记录、不同地区工作岗位减少的情况以及其他经济趋势,研究人员发现,受贸易冲击影响最大的那些地方,更容易在政治上走向极右或极左。

“It’s not about incumbents changing their positions,” said David Autor, an influential scholar of labor economics and trade at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and one of the paper’s authors. “It’s about the replacement of moderates with more ideological successors.”

“这无关乎在任者改变立场,”麻省理工学院(Massachusetts Institute of Technology)劳动经济学和贸易领域的知名学者、时报撰稿人大卫·奥特尔(David Autor)说,“而是关乎意识形态上更激进的继任者取代温和派。”

Mr. Autor added: “In retrospect, whether it’s Trump or Sanders, we should have seen in it coming. The China shock isn’t the sole factor, but it is something of a missing link.”

奥特尔还说:“回想起来,我们本应看到,不论特朗普抑或桑德斯的崛起,都是这种趋势的必然结果。‘中国的冲击’并非唯一因素,但却是一个被忽略的环节。”

In addition to Mr. Autor, the research was conducted by David Dorn of the University of Zurich; Gordon Hanson, a professor at the University of California, San Diego; and Kaveh Majlesi of Lund University in Sweden.

除了奥特尔,从事这项研究的还有苏黎世大学(University of Zurich)的大卫·多恩(David Dorn),加州大学圣地亚哥分校(University of California, San Diego)的教授戈登·汉森(Gordon Hanson)以及瑞典隆德大学(Lund University)的卡韦赫·马勒西(Kaveh Majlesi)。

“Exposure to import competition is bad for centrists,” Mr. Hanson said. “We’ve known that political polarization and income inequality track each other, but that pattern is simply a correlation. We’ve now found a mechanism for how economic changes create further political divisions.”

“受到进口竞争的冲击,对中间派非常不利,”汉森说。“我们已经知道政治两级分化和收入不平等之间是有关联的,但那仅仅是相关而已。现在我们发现了经济变迁令政治分歧进一步扩大的机制。”

Parker Griffith experienced the move away from the political middle firsthand.

帕克·格里菲斯(Parker Griffith)对于政治中间派被人抛弃有着切身体会。

A so-called Blue Dog Democrat who represented Courtland and the rest of Alabama’s Fifth Congressional District, he switched to the Republicans in 2009 and metamorphosed into a moderate Republican. But that wasn’t enough to save his seat.

格里菲斯原本是代表考特兰镇所在的阿拉巴马州第五国会选区的一名蓝狗民主党人(Blue Dog Democrat)。他在2009年转投共和党阵营,变成了温和派共产党人。但这并不足以保住他的席位。

Dr. Griffith was beaten in the Republican primary in 2010 by Morris J. Brooks Jr., who has emerged as one of the most right-wing members of Congress.

在2010年的共和党初选中,格里菲斯败给了小莫里斯·J·布鲁克斯(Morris J. Brooks),后者加入了最右派的国会议员的行列。

“If you’re under economic stress and you can’t provide for your family, the easiest answer is to find someone to blame,” said Dr. Griffith. “Mexicans, illegal immigrants, Obama.”

“如果你面临着经济压力,无法养活家人,最简单的办法就是归罪于他人,”格里菲斯说,“比如墨西哥人、菲律宾人、奥巴马。”

Representative Brooks has said that he would consider “anything short of shooting” illegal immigrants to get them out of the country and that he favored imposing heavy tariffs on China to “level the playing field”.

国会议员布鲁克斯曾经说过,为了把非法移民赶出美国,他会考虑“除了朝他们开枪之外的任何办法”;他还支持提高中国商品的进口关税,以便“培育公平的竞争环境”。

In the case of the Fifth District, which includes Huntsville and its space- and defense-related industries, as well as more industrial Florence along the Tennessee River, the move has been to the right.

就阿拉巴马州第五国会选区而言,政治风向已经进一步向右转了。该选区涵盖了田纳西河(Tennessee River)河畔拥有航天及国防相关产业的亨茨维尔市,以及更像工业城市的佛罗伦斯。

But Mr. Autor and his colleagues found that in districts with heavy minority representation, similar shocks can push more Democratic districts in the opposite direction. While whites hit hard by trade tend to move right, nonwhite voters move left, eroding support for moderates in both parties, the study concluded.

但奥特尔及其同事发现,在少数族裔聚居的地方,同样的冲击会推动民主党占优的选区走向相反的方向。他们的研究结论是:贸易冲击来袭,受到重创的白人选民会向右转,非白人选民则会向左转,两党的中间派支持率都会下降。

As the South industrialized in the second half of the 20th century, poor Alabamians who once toiled on farms were able to secure a toehold in the middle class. In the shadow of Tennessee Valley Authority dams that supplied cheap power, thousands of workers sewed jeans and T-shirts, and could earn upward of $20 an hour in heavily unionized factories.

20世纪下半叶,随着南方地区逐渐变得工业化,原本在农场里辛勤劳作的贫穷的阿拉巴马人得以勉强跻身中产阶级之列。在由田纳西河谷管理局(Tennessee Valley Authority)修建、可以提供廉价电力的那些水坝的帮助下,成千上万工人在工厂里缝制着牛仔裤和T恤衫,在工会组织强大的工厂里,他们可以赚到最高达20美元的时薪。

But the collapse of the apparel industry here in the first decade of the 21st century, following China’s entry into the World Trade Organization in 2001, reversed that process.

但自从2001年中国加入世贸组织(World Trade Organization,简称WTO)以后,这里的服装行业在21世纪的第一个十年里走向崩溃,前述进程也就出现了逆转。

Nearly 10,000 manufacturing jobs disappeared. At 7.4 percent, the regional unemployment rate is well below its peak of 12.8 percent in 2010, but remains far above the national average of 5 percent.

将近1万个制造业工作岗位消失了。该地区当前的失业率是7.4%,远低于2010年12.8%的峰值,但仍大大高于5%的全国平均水平。

The new paper underscores a broader rethinking among economists of the costs and benefits of policies aimed at encouraging industrial competition across borders.

这一新研究所凸显的是,经济学家们就旨在鼓励国家间工业竞争的那些政策的成本和收益展开了更广泛的反思。

“There’s a deeper appreciation for the magnitude of the impact on workers who lose their jobs,” Mr. Hanson said. “But the nature of globalization changed after the end of the Cold War and it took a while for academics to catch up.”

“针对失业工人所受冲击的程度有了更深的理解,”汉森说。“不过冷战结束后,全球化的本质有所变化,学术界花了一些时间才跟上这种变化。”

Until the Nafta agreement with Canada and Mexico in 1994, and especially the entry of China into the W.T.O., trade deals were mostly multilateral and the rise in manufacturing imports to the United States came primarily from other advanced industrial nations like Germany and Japan.

直到美国在1994年与加拿大、墨西哥签署北美自由贸易协定(Nafta),尤其是中国在2001年加入WTO以前,贸易协定大多是多边的,美国的制造业产品进口量上升,主要是因为从德国、日本等发达工业国家进口了更多产品。

“China and the W.T.O. represented a shock that was way larger,” Mr. Autor said. “We hadn’t seen shocks like this because we were trading with rich countries, not highly productive developing countries with enormous labor reserves.”

“中国和WTO代表了一种严重得多的冲击,”奥特尔说。“那以前我们没见过这样的冲击,因为我们的贸易伙伴一直是富国,而非劳动力资源极其丰富、生产率很高的发展中国家。”

To understand the connection between imports from China and political polarization, the researchers focused on the fact that manufacturers tend to localize in a specific region.

为了弄清从中国进口的商品与政治两极分化之间的关系,研究人员把关注点放在了一些制造商倾向于在某一特定地区深入发展这个特点上。

“There are these concentrated pockets of hurt,” Mr. Autor said, “and we’re seeing the political consequences of that.”

“这就造成了一些地区遭受的伤害尤其严重,”奥特尔说,“我们正目睹它的政治后果。”

Mr. Autor and Mr. Hanson emphasize that trade is only one factor among many that have contributed to a polarizing Congress (income inequality is another, as are attitudes toward immigrants). But it has been an important one, particularly over the last decade, when Chinese imports ramped up.

奥特尔和汉森强调,贸易冲击只是让国会的两极分化愈演越烈的多个因素之一(其他因素包括收入不平等、对移民的看法等)。但它是非常重要的因素,在过去十年里尤为如此——其间来自中国的进口商品数量出现激增。

This trade-induced polarization has had a significant effect on the overall ideological makeup of Congress.

这种由贸易引发的两极分化,已经对国会的整体意识形态构成产生了重大影响。

The authors found that voters in congressional districts hardest hit by Chinese imports tended to choose more ideologically extreme lawmakers.

这项研究的几位发起人发现,受来自中国的进口商品冲击最严重的那些国会选区的选民,倾向于选择意识形态更为极端的立法者。

Between 2002 and 2010, districts in the top 5th percentile of trade exposure, on average, experienced a 19 percent greater drop in manufacturing employment relative to districts at the other end of the spectrum. Those hard-hit districts became, on average, far more conservative: the ideological equivalent of moving from Marco Rubio to Ted Cruz.

2002至2010年间,所受贸易冲击程度排在前5%的地区,制造业工作岗位减少量比排在后5%的地区平均高出19%。总体而言,那些受到严重冲击的地区比以前保守得多:在意识形态上相当从马克·鲁比奥(Marco Rubio)变成特德·科鲁兹(Ted Cruz)

Some very conservative members of Congress have been sympathetic to free trade arguments in the past, but Representative Brooks, who has welcomed support from the Tea Party, doesn’t mince words about where he stands.

一些极为保守的国会议员过去一直赞成自由贸易理论,但对来自茶党(Tea Party)的支持表示欢迎的布鲁克斯并不讳言自己的立场。

“We’re going to have to do whatever is necessary to ensure that a foreign country isn’t able to successfully attack and destroy significant parts of the economy,” he said. “I was in China two weeks ago and they are going to clean our plow if we don’t act.”

“我们必须采取一切必要举措来保证其他国家无法成功地伤害或摧毁美国经济的重要组成部分,”他说。“两周前我去过中国,如果我们不采取行动,他们就会把我们打翻在地。”

Mr. Autor, like most economists, is still persuaded of the long-established benefits that global trade confers on the economy as a whole. But he recognizes that angry voters have valid reasons to be frustrated.

和大多数经济学家一样,奥特尔仍然相信,整体而言全球贸易将为美国经济带来早就获得确认的益处。但他意识到,愤怒的选民完全有理由不快。

“It’s a matter of diffuse benefits and concentrated costs, but our political system hasn’t addressed those costs,” he said.

“问题在于收益是分散的,成本是集中的,但我们的政治体系尚未着手处理与这些成本有关的问题,”他说。

Some staunch defenders of globalization, like Gary Clyde Hufbauer, a senior fellow at the Peter G. Peterson Institute for International Economics in Washington, also acknowledge that the federal government has failed to adequately address the needs of workers dislocated by lowered import barriers.

彼得森国际经济研究所(Peterson Institute for International Economics)高级研究员加里·克莱德·赫夫鲍尔(Gary Clyde Hufbauer)等全球化的坚定捍卫者也承认,联邦政府没能满足因为进口壁垒降低而失业的那些工人的需求。

But the benefit of free trade is “10 times the size of the losses,” he said. “Free trade really helps working-class people in terms of lower prices for products. The benefits are skewed toward people with lower income because they spend a much larger fraction of their income on merchandise.”

但自由贸易的收益是“损失的10倍”,他说。“自由贸易让产品的价格降低了,就这一点而言,它真的帮到了工薪阶层的人。收入较低的人获得的好处更多一些,因为他们会把更大比例的收入花在购买商品上。”

Perhaps, but that’s cold comfort to people in northern Alabama, where wages are stagnant and manufacturing jobs are still disappearing.

或许吧。但这种话安慰不了生活在阿拉巴马州北部的人,那里的工资水平停滞不前,制造业工作岗位仍然在减少。

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