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我已经开始怀念奥巴马了

更新时间:2017-1-22 10:53:19 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

Missing Barack Obama Already
我已经开始怀念奥巴马了

Barack Obama’s legacy is being systematically unraveled even before he leaves office, with The Wall Street Journal scoffing that he “has been a historic president but perhaps not a consequential one.”

贝拉克·奥巴马(Barack Obama)即将卸任,而其遗产正遭到系统性的颠覆,《华尔街日报》(The Wall Street Journal)嘲笑说,“他是一位具有历史意义的总统,但或许不是具有深远影响的一位。”

Historians will also note that the Democratic Party is in far worse shape today than when Obama took office: It has lost its House and Senate majorities, as well as 13 governorships and more than 900 state legislative seats.

历史学者也会指出,民主党现在的情况比奥巴马上任之初糟糕得多:它失去了参众两院多数党的地位,还失去了13个州长席位和超过900个州议会席位。

More broadly, the sunny Obama optimism of “Yes, we can” has faded into a rancorous miasma of distrust and dysfunction. One example of that rancor is unfolding at the Woodmont Country Club outside Washington, where hawkish pro-Israeli members are campaigning to deny Obama membership — even though there’s no official indication he will even apply.

往大里说,以“是,我们能”为代表的奥巴马那阳光般的乐观精神已经褪色,让位给一团包裹着不信任和失灵的怨毒之气。在靠近华盛顿的林峰乡村俱乐部(Woodmont Country Club),可以看到这种怨毒的例证。该俱乐部亲以色列的鹰派会员正采取行动,想要阻止奥巴马获得会员资格——尽管尚未有正式消息显示他会申请加入。

Yet here’s my prediction: America and the world will soon be craving that Obama Cool again.

不过据我预测:美国乃至全世界很快就会重新喜欢上奥巴马的那股子酷劲儿。

Voters are fickle and promiscuous, suffering an eight-year itch for a fling with someone who is the opposite of their last infatuation. Sick of Bill Clinton, we turned to a Texas governor who was utterly different. Eight years later, weary of George W. Bush, we elected his polar opposite, a liberal black law professor. And now we’ve elected Obama’s antipode.

选民既薄情又随便,和某个截然不同于上一个爱慕对象的人厮混上八年,便会遭遇八年之痒。受够了比尔·克林顿(Bill Clinton),我们把头转向和克林顿大相径庭的得克萨斯州州长。8年后,看厌了乔治·W·布什(George W. Bush),我们把票投给和布什天差地别的自由派黑人法学教授。现在,我们又选中了一个和奥巴马迥然不同的人。

Polls suggest that voters are already souring on Donald Trump, in ways that may soon create nostalgia for Obama. Newly elected presidents usually enjoy a honeymoon, but Gallup says Trump’s approval is at the lowest level the pollster has recorded in a presidential transition.

民调结果显示,选民已经对唐纳德·特朗普(Donald Trump)不大满意了,而这种不满也许很快就会催生出对奥巴马的怀念之情。新当选的总统通常可以享受蜜月期的甜蜜时光,但民调机构盖洛普(Gallup)称其录得的数据显示,比起其他人,特朗普在总统交接期的民望是最低的。

Mostly, I think we journalists overdo the personal and pay insufficient attention to policies — such as those that led Obama’s presidency to enjoy the longest streak of consecutive private-sector job creation in the 78 years the statistic has been recorded. But while Obama’s policy legacy is being whittled away, he also has an important personal legacy that Trump inadvertently burnishes.

我常常认为,我们这些记者总是过于关注人,而不够关注政策——比如让奥巴马治下私人部门工作岗位持续增长期的长度创下有统计记录的78年间之最的那些政策。不过,奥巴马的政治遗产虽然正受到破坏,但他还有一项被特朗普在无意间擦亮的重要的个人遗产。

A president inevitably is not just commander in chief, but also a role model, a symbol of American values around the world. We won the Cold War not only with American missiles, but also with American “soft power,” and one element of our soft power arsenal is a president who commands respect and admiration at home and abroad. We want our children and the world’s to admire our president — and that is where Obama is strongest and Trump weakest.

说到底,一位总统不仅是总司令,也是一名榜样,是美国价值观在全世界的一个象征。我们赢得冷战依靠的不只是美国的导弹,还有美国的“软实力”,而我们软实力武器库里的其中一项,就是一位可以在国内外赢得尊重与赞赏的总统。我们希望自己的和全世界的孩子都敬佩我们的总统——那是奥巴马最大的强项,也是特朗普最明显的弱项。

Trump spews emotional tweets impetuously and vindictively, lacing his venom with misspellings or grammatical mistakes. We’ll be craving Obama’s prudence, intellect and reserve.

特朗普充满恶意而又猛烈地在Twitter上持续发布情绪化的帖子,恶毒的言论中还会出现拼写或语法错误。我们会怀念奥巴马的谨慎、才智与克制。

The personal differences between them aren’t just that Obama was an African-American son of a single mom, while Trump was the scion of a real estate tycoon. It’s more the behaviors they model. Trump has had five children by three wives, has boasted of his infidelities, has shrugged at conflicts of interest and is a walking scandal.

他们的个人差异不仅仅在于奥巴马是一位单身母亲的非裔美国人儿子,而特朗普是房地产大亨的后裔,更在于他们的所作所为。特朗普与三任妻子生了五个孩子,吹嘘自己的不忠行为,对利益冲突不屑一顾,而且丑闻百出。

“He will never, ever, let you down. … Donald is intensely loyal,” we were told at the Republican convention — by his third wife. In contrast, Obama has the most boring personal life imaginable, and is the rare president who got through a second term without significant scandals.

“他永远永远也不会让你失望……唐纳德极为忠诚,”我们在共和党大会上得知——从他的第三任妻子口中。相比之下,奥巴马拥有的是你能想象的最无聊的私人生活,是少见的经历两任任期却没有出现任何丑闻的总统。

That seems to be because of extreme caution. When Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize, he solicited a 13-page memo from Justice Department lawyers verifying that there was absolutely no conflict in accepting it. And then he donated the money to charities.

他之所以能做到这一点,似乎是因为极度的谨慎。当奥巴马被授予诺贝尔和平奖时,他让司法部律师准备了一份13页的备忘录,以确定接受这个奖项绝不存在任何利益冲突。之后又把奖金捐给了慈善机构。

Whatever our views of Obama’s politics, we should be able to agree that he is a superlative family man. For eight years, this family has made us proud. The graciousness that the Obamas displayed toward the Trumps, even as in private they must have been beating their heads against the wall, exemplified class.

不管我们对奥巴马的政治业绩持什么样的观点,我们应该都能达成这样一个共识,即奥巴马是一个非常顾家的男人。过去八年里,这家人一直让我们深感自豪。奥巴马对待特朗普的彬彬有礼——尽管私下里他们必定斗得头破血流——也彰显了他的风度。

When Obama gave his farewell address in Chicago this month, he was accompanied by Michelle and his older daughter, Malia, but 15-year-old Sasha was missing. Twitter was abuzz, and #WheresSasha was soon trending. It turned out that she wasn’t in a drunken stupor, or staying away in an angry teenage sulk. Rather, it seemed that the Obamas had Sasha stay home to study for an exam the next morning.

当奥巴马本月在芝加哥发表告别演说时,米歇尔(Michelle)和他的大女儿马莉娅(Malia)陪伴在一旁,但15岁的萨莎(Sasha)没有到场。Twitter上议论纷纷,#萨莎在哪#的标签在网上传播开来。事实证明,她并没有醉得不省人事,也不是青春期叛逆故意躲开。而似乎是因为奥巴马把萨莎留在了家里,好为第二天的考试做准备。

If I were Sasha, I’d be annoyed: “C’mon, Dad! You coulda written me a note!” But I’m proud of a first family that so values education, and is so averse to asserting privilege.

如果我是萨莎,我会为此生气:“不是吧,爸爸!你可以给我写个请假条啊!”但是我为这样一个看中教育、如此不愿享受特权的第一家庭感到自豪。

We can argue about Obama’s policies. For my part, I deplored his passivity on Syria. But even on issues that I disagreed with him on, I never doubted his integrity or intelligence, his decency or honor.

我们可以争论奥巴马的政策。在这方面,我强烈反对他在叙利亚问题上的被动。但即便是在我与他观念不同的问题上,我也从不怀疑他的正直与智慧,不怀疑他的正派与体面。

Trump may dismantle Obamacare and pull out of the Paris climate accord. But he cannot undo Obama’s legacy of dignity and old-fashioned virtue, and the impression he made on all of us.

特朗普或许会废除奥巴马医改(Obamacare),退出巴黎气候协议。但他不能抹掉奥巴马的高尚品德和老式的美德留下的影响,不能磨灭他给我们所有人留下的印象。

And if, as I fear, we see the White House transformed into a bog of scandals flowing from an unprincipled narcissist, we as a nation will be more appreciative of a first family that set an impeccable example for all the world.

如果就像我担心的那样,我们看到白宫变成了由一个不讲原则的自恋狂造就的充满丑闻的泥潭,我们整个国家都会更加激赏一个为全世界树立了无可挑剔榜样的第一家庭。

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