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当世界被一个幼稚鬼领导

更新时间:2017-5-16 18:40:36 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

When the World Is Led by a Child
当世界被一个幼稚鬼领导

At certain times Donald Trump has seemed like a budding authoritarian, a corrupt Nixon, a rabble-rousing populist or a big business corporatist.

在某些时候,唐纳德·特朗普看似萌芽中的专制者,腐败的尼克松,煽动民心的民粹主义者,又或是一个大企业社团主义者。

But as Trump has settled into his White House role, he has given a series of long interviews, and when you study the transcripts it becomes clear that fundamentally he is none of these things.

当特朗普逐渐进入自己在白宫的角色之后,他接受了一系列的长访谈,如果研究一下访谈整理稿,就可以发现他本质上完全不是这些类型的人。

At base, Trump is an infantalist. There are three tasks that most mature adults have sort of figured out by the time they hit 25. Trump has mastered none of them. Immaturity is becoming the dominant note of his presidency, lack of self-control his leitmotif.

基本上,特朗普就是一个幼稚病患者。大多数成年人在25岁左右就已经明确了下文的三项任务,特朗普却连一项也没掌握。不成熟正成为他总统任内的主旋律,缺乏自制力则是这曲乐章的主题。

First, most adults have learned to sit still. But mentally, Trump is still a 7-year-old boy who is bouncing around the classroom. Trump’s answers in these interviews are not very long — 200 words at the high end — but he will typically flit through four or five topics before ending up with how unfair the press is to him.

首先,大多数成年人都知道怎么安静地坐好。但在精神上,特朗普仍然是一个教室里蹦蹦跳跳的7岁男孩。在这些采访中,特朗普的回答都不是很长——在比较长的时候会有200个词——但他一般都是匆匆聊上四五个话题就开始大谈媒体对他有多不公平。

His inability to focus his attention makes it hard for him to learn and master facts. He is ill informed about his own policies and tramples his own talking points. It makes it hard to control his mouth. On an impulse, he will promise a tax reform when his staff has done little of the actual work.

他无法集中注意力,这让他难以学习和掌握事实。他很不了解自己的政策,谈话时还会随意把提纲扔到一边。这也让他很难控制自己的嘴巴。他会因为一时冲动,在他的工作人员在相关方面几乎没有开展任何实际工作的情况下,就承诺税制改革。

Second, most people of drinking age have achieved some accurate sense of themselves, some internal criteria to measure their own merits and demerits. But Trump seems to need perpetual outside approval to stabilize his sense of self, so he is perpetually desperate for approval, telling heroic fabulist tales about himself.

第二,大多数到达可饮酒年龄的人士已经有了一些准确的自我意识,已经建立起一些内心的标准,用来衡量自己的优点和缺点。但特朗普似乎需要持续不断的外界认可,才能令他的自我意识平稳下来,所以他总在迫切地渴望着认可,总在讲述关于他自己的英雄寓言故事。

“In a short period of time I understood everything there was to know about health care,” he told Time. “A lot of the people have said that, some people said it was the single best speech ever made in that chamber,” he told The Associated Press, referring to his joint session speech.

“我只用了很短时间就搞清了医疗保健的所有事情,”他告诉《时代》(Time)杂志。“很多人都这么说,有人说这是那个厅里出现过的最好的演讲,”提起自己在国会参众两院联席会议上的讲话时,他对美联社的记者这样说道。

By Trump’s own account, he knows more about aircraft carrier technology than the Navy. According to his interview with The Economist, he invented the phrase “priming the pump” (even though it was famous by 1933). Trump is not only trying to deceive others. His falsehoods are attempts to build a world in which he can feel good for an instant and comfortably deceive himself.

根据特朗普自己的描述,他比海军更懂航空母舰技术。根据他接受《经济学人》(The Economist)采访时的说法,他发明了“注水入泵”(priming the pump)这个短语,用来形容增加政府支出以刺激经济(虽然这个词在1933年就已经很有名了)。特朗普不仅是试图欺骗别人。他的谎言是用来建立一个世界,在这个世界里,他可以在片刻之间就感觉良好,并且轻松自如地自欺欺人。

He is thus the all-time record-holder of the Dunning-Kruger effect, the phenomenon in which the incompetent person is too incompetent to understand his own incompetence. Trump thought he’d be celebrated for firing James Comey. He thought his press coverage would grow wildly positive once he won the nomination. He is perpetually surprised because reality does not comport with his fantasies.

因此,他堪称邓宁-克鲁格(Dunning-Kruger)效应的历史纪录保持者——这个现象是指能力欠缺的人也没有能力认识到自身的无能。特朗普认为自己会因为解雇詹姆斯·科米(James Comey)而受到赞誉。他曾经认为,一旦赢下总统候选人提名,关于他的媒体报道就会变得非常积极。他一直都在感到惊讶,因为现实并不符合他的幻想。

Third, by adulthood most people can perceive how others are thinking. For example, they learn subtle arts such as false modesty so they won’t be perceived as obnoxious.

第三,成年后,大多数人可以察觉到别人的想法。举例来说,他们学习故作谦虚这类微妙的艺术,以便不在别人心目中显得讨厌。

But Trump seems to have not yet developed a theory of mind. Other people are black boxes that supply either affirmation or disapproval. As a result, he is weirdly transparent. He wants people to love him, so he is constantly telling interviewers that he is widely loved. In Trump’s telling, every meeting was scheduled for 15 minutes but his guests stayed two hours because they liked him so much.

但是特朗普似乎还没有发展出一种思维理论。对于他来说,其他人都是黑匣子,要么提供赞成,要么提供不赞成。结果,他呈现出一种古怪的透明。他希望人们都爱他,所以他不断地告诉采访者们自己被很多很多人热爱。根据特朗普的说法,他的每次会面都被安排为15分钟,但客人们往往一呆就是两个小时,因为他们太喜欢他了。

Which brings us to the reports that Trump betrayed an intelligence source and leaked secrets to his Russian visitors. From all we know so far, Trump didn’t do it because he is a Russian agent, or for any malevolent intent. He did it because he is sloppy, because he lacks all impulse control, and above all because he is a 7-year-old boy desperate for the approval of those he admires.

这让我们想起那些关于特朗普吐露了一个情报来源,并向俄罗斯来访者泄露了若干机密的报道。根据迄今所知道的一切,特朗普之所以这样做,并非因为他是俄罗斯特工,也不是因为他有任何恶意企图。他这样做是因为疏忽大意,因为他缺乏任何管理冲动的能力,最重要的是,他是一个7岁的男孩,迫切渴望被他所欣赏的人称赞。

The Russian leak story reveals one other thing, the dangerousness of a hollow man.

涉及俄罗斯的这个泄密故事揭示了另一件事,一个没有真材实料的人是多么的危险。

Our institutions depend on people who have enough engraved character traits to fulfill their assigned duties. But there is perpetually less to Trump than it appears. When we analyze a president’s utterances we tend to assume that there is some substantive process behind the words, that it’s part of some strategic intent.

我们的制度有赖于具有足够鲜明个性的人去履行自己被分配到的职责。但是,特朗普表现出来的外在总是大于其内在。当我们分析总统的言论时,我们倾向于假设他的言辞背后包含一些实实在在的进程,是某种战略意图的一部分。

But Trump’s statements don’t necessarily come from anywhere, lead anywhere or have a permanent reality beyond his wish to be liked at any given instant.

但是,特朗普的声明并不一定有任何根据,也不一定有任何目的,更不一定包含什么不变的真相,只是反映出他在任何时刻都希望被人喜欢的愿望。

We’ve got this perverse situation in which the vast analytic powers of the entire world are being spent trying to understand a guy whose thoughts are often just six fireflies beeping randomly in a jar.

我们就是处在这样一种不正常的情况之下,整个世界庞大的分析能力都用来试图理解这样一个人,而他的想法往往就像是装在罐子里的六只萤火虫,随机发出不定的亮光。

“We badly want to understand Trump, to grasp him,” David Roberts writes in Vox. “It might give us some sense of control, or at least an ability to predict what he will do next. But what if there’s nothing to understand? What if there is no there there?”

“我们非常想了解特朗普,尽力去理解他的想法,”大卫·罗伯茨(David Roberts)为《Vox》写道。“这可能会给我们带来一些掌控感,或者至少有能力预测他下一步会做些什么。但是如果根本就没有什么可以去理解的东西呢?如果他脑子里根本什么都没有呢?”

And out of that void comes a carelessness that quite possibly betrayed an intelligence source, and endangered a country.

由于这种空洞而导致的一次疏忽大意很有可能背叛了一个情报来源,也危及到一个国家。

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