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經濟學人:圣誕節前英國的噩夢(1)

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來源于《社論》版塊
Britain’s nightmare before Christmas
圣誕節前英國的噩夢
A divided country faces an election that will tear it still further apart
一個分裂的國家面臨著一場將進一步分裂的選舉
British voters keep being called to the polls—and each time the options before them are worse. Labour and the Conservatives, once parties of the centre-left and -right, have steadily grown further apart in the three elections of the past four years. Next week voters face their starkest choice yet, between Boris Johnson, whose Tories promise a hard Brexit, and Jeremy Corbyn, whose Labour Party plans to “rewrite the rules of the economy” along radical socialist lines. Mr Johnson runs the most unpopular new government on record; Mr Corbyn is the most unpopular leader of the opposition. On Friday the 13th, unlucky Britons will wake to find one of these horrors in charge.
英國選民不斷被召集到投票站,但每次他們面前的選擇都更糟糕。工黨和保守黨曾經是中左翼和右翼政黨,但在過去四年的三次選舉中,兩黨間的分歧越來越大。下周,選民將面臨迄今為止最嚴峻的選擇:承諾“硬脫歐”的保守黨代表鮑里斯•約翰遜,和計劃沿著激進的社會主義路線“改寫經濟規則”的工黨代表杰里米·科爾賓。約翰遜先生領導著有史以來最不受歡迎的新政府;而科爾賓是反對黨中最不受歡迎的領導人。在13號星期五,不幸的英國人將會清醒地發現這些恐怖的事情總有一件會發生。

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At the last election, two years and a political era ago, we regretted the drift to the extremes. Today’s manifestos go a lot further. In 2017 Labour was on the left of the European mainstream. Today it would seize 10% of large firms’ equity, to be held in funds paying out mostly to the exchequer rather than to the workers who are meant to be the beneficiaries. It would phase in a fourday week, supposedly with no loss of pay. The list of industries to be nationalised seems only to grow. Drug patents could be forcibly licensed. The bill for a rapid increase in spending would fall on the rich and companies, whose tax burden would go from the lowest in the G7 to the highest. It is an attempt to deal with 21stcentury problems using policies that failed in the 20th.

在上次選舉中,在兩年前和一個政治時代之前,我們對走極端感到遺憾。如今的宣言卻更極端。2017年,工黨是歐洲主流的左翼。如今,工黨將沒收大公司10%的股權,這些股權將以資金的形式持有,這些資金主要支付給財政部,而不是支付給本應成為受益者的工人。它將分階段實行每周四天工作制,按理說不會減薪。被國有化的行業似乎只會越來越多。藥品專利可能會被強制許可??焖僭黾又С龅馁~單將落在富人和企業身上,他們的稅收負擔將從七國集團中最低的國家變為最高的國家。工黨試圖用20世紀失敗的政策來解決21世紀的問題。
Nor has Mr Corbyn done anything to dampen concerns about his broader worldview. A critic of Western foreign policy and sympathiser with dictators in Iran and Venezuela who oppose it, he blamed nato for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in 2014. Last year he suggested samples of a nerve agent used to poison a Russian former spy in Salisbury should be sent to Moscow, so Vladimir Putin could see if it was his. Under such a prime minister, Britain could not rely on receiving American intelligence. Nor has Mr Corbyn dealt with the anti-Semitism that has taken root in Labour on his watch. Some Remainers might swallow this as the price of a second Brexit referendum, which Mr Corbyn has at last promised. We have long argued for such a vote. Yet Mr Corbyn’s ruinous plans at home and bankrupt views abroad mean that this newspaper cannot support Labour.
科爾賓也沒有做任何事情來緩和人們對他更廣闊的世界觀的擔憂。他批評西方的外交政策,同情伊朗和委內瑞拉的獨裁者,因為他們反對西方的政策。去年,他建議將用于毒死索爾茲伯里一名前俄羅斯間諜的神經毒劑樣本送到莫斯科,這樣弗拉基米爾•普京就能知道這是不是他的。在這樣一位首相的領導下,英國不能指望得到美國的情報??茽栙e先生也沒有處理在任內扎根于工黨的反猶太主義。一些留歐派可能會認為這是第二次英國退歐公投的代價,科爾賓最終承諾了這一點。我們一直主張進行這樣的投票。然而科爾賓先生在國內的毀滅性計劃和在國外破產的觀點意味著本刊不能支持工黨。

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