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经济学人中英对照16


《The Economist》《经济学人》中文版
Translated From 《The Economist》,By ecocn team http://www.ecocn.org
多米诺理论2009-03-01Economics focus



经济聚焦
Domino theory多米诺理





Feb 26th 2009
From The Economist print edition

Where could emerging-market contagion spread next?
新兴市场下一步将会传到哪?


THE drought of foreign capital is beginning to wreck many economies in central and eastern Europe. Currencies, shares and bonds are tumbling, and some economists fear that one or more of these countries could default on its foreign debts. Emerging-market crises have a nasty habit of spreading as investors flee one country after another. Some Middle Eastern markets, notably Dubai, are already in trouble. But which of the larger emerging economies are most vulnerable?


外国资本的缺乏正在开始毁灭中欧和东欧的经济。货币,股票和债券也接连受挫,一些经济学家担心这些国家中会有一个甚至更多的拖欠外债。新型市场的危机就是有种普遍的糟糕情况就是投资者从一个国家逃窜到另一个国家。一些中欧市场,明显迪拜就已经陷入困境。但是哪个更大的新型经济是最脆弱的?




To answer that question in the past, economists used to pay most attention to the solvency of governments, and hence their debt-to-GDP ratios. But today, the biggest risk in the emerging world comes not from sovereign borrowing, but from the debts of firms and banks. As foreign capital dries up, they will find it harder to refinance maturing debts or to raise new loans.


在过去为了回答这个问题,经济学往往关注政府的偿付能力,因而归咎于债务与国内生产总值的比率。但是今天,在新型世界里,最大的风险不是来自于国家的借款,而是来自于企业和银行的债务。由于外国资本的干涸,他们发现为到期债务筹集资金或是获得新的贷款将更加困难。









Our table (based largely on figures provided by HSBC) uses three indicators to judge how vulnerable economies are to the global credit crunch. The first is the expected current-account balance for this year. Large deficits need to be financed, but banking and portfolio inflows are now scarce, and even foreign direct investment, which used to be seen as less volatile, has fallen sharply this year. Many of the smaller east European economies had double-digit deficits as a share of GDP in 2008, although deep recessions will reduce them this year. Among the countries in the table, Pakistan, South Africa and Poland are tipped to run current-account deficits of 8% or more of GDP this year—the size of Thailand’s deficit before its crisis in 1997.


我们的列表(基于汇丰银行提供的大量数据)用了三个指标来判断在全球信贷紧缩面前脆弱的经济体是怎样的情况。首先是今年的预计经常账户余额。大量的赤字需要被注资,但是银行和投资组合的流入现在很缺乏,甚至曾经很少变动的外国直接投资今年也急剧下降。很多更小的东欧经济体在2008年的GDP比率中已经有两位数的赤字,尽管严重的经济衰退在今年会导致下降。在列表里的这些国家中,巴基斯坦,南非和波兰是典型的工业生产计划运行机制,经常账户赤字达到今年GDP的8%甚至更多——这是泰国在1997年金融危机前的赤字规模。


As well as financing a current-account shortfall, a country has to repay or roll over existing debts. If external finance is not available, it must run down its reserves. Thus a useful measure of financing risk is short-term debt (due within 12 months) as a percentage of foreign-exchange reserves. Anything above 100%, implying that debts exceed foreign exchange, should ring alarm bells. (At the start of 1997 Thailand’s short-term debt was 130% of its reserves.) The ratio is estimated at over 250% in both Latvia and Estonia, but in all the larger emerging economies it is below 100%. However, HSBC forecasts that South Korea’s short-term debt will exceed its shrinking reserves before the year is out. The reserve cover in Indonesia, South Africa and Hungary is also looking thin. Russia’s reserves have plunged by more than one-third as the central bank has tried to prop up the rouble, but it still has a comfortable cushion.
The third indicator, the ratio of banks’ loans to their deposits, is one measure of the vulnerability of banking systems. When the ratio is over 1.0 (as in, say, Russia, Brazil, South Korea and Hungary), it means that the banks depend on borrowing, often from abroad, to finance domestic lending and so will be squeezed by the global credit crunch.

就像融资经常账户余额一样,一个国家必须偿还或者滚动现有资产。如果外国资金不可靠,他就必须下调储备。因此一个有用的措施来降低融资风险是将短期债务(在12个月以内)来作为外汇储备的一部分。高于100%意味着债务超过了外汇,此时就当敲响警钟了。(在1997年初的时候,泰国的短期贷款是储备的130%)在拉脱维亚和爱沙尼亚这个比率估计都超过了250%,但是在所有更大的经济体中是低于100%的。然而,汇丰银行在今年数据公开之前预测韩国的短期债务会超过其收缩的储备。这份储备覆盖了印度尼西亚,南非,并且匈牙利也逐渐紧缩。尽管俄国的储备已经骤降了三分之一以上,但俄中央银行尝试着支撑卢布,它仍然还是有一个很好的靠垫的。第三个指标,银行贷款和储蓄的比率,是用来衡量银行系统脆弱性的。但这个比率超过1.0时(据说在俄国,巴西,韩国和匈牙利),这意味着银行依靠借款来充实本国贷款,这些借款通常来自于国外,因而在全球信贷紧缩的时候会有缩水。

To get an overall sense of financial vulnerability we have ranked all the countries on each of the three measures and then taken their average score. If all emerging economies were included, the smaller east Europeans, such as Latvia, Ukraine and Romania, would dominate the top of the risk league. Among the 17 larger economies shown in the table, South Africa and Hungary look the most risky; China the least. Hungary has already had to go cap in hand to the IMF for a loan. South Africa may yet have to. Despite higher gold prices, weaker mineral exports are causing its current-account deficit to swell, possibly to more than 10% of GDP this year, at the same time as net foreign direct investment is expected to slump, so the country needs to borrow even more. The rand, which has already fallen sharply, remains one of the most vulnerable emerging-market currencies.


为了全面的认识金融的脆弱,我们对所有国家在这三个标准下,每个依次进行排列然后取它们的平均数。如果所有的新型就那个集体都包括,在更小的东欧,像拉脱维亚,乌克兰和罗马尼亚在危机等级中处于前列。在列表中显示的17个更大的经济体中,南非和匈牙利处于最危机中;中国的危机最小。匈牙利已经不得不为IMF(国际货币基金组织)的贷款而毕恭毕敬。南非可能还没有到这种程度。尽管增长的黄金价格和下降的的矿石出口导致他经常账户赤字的扩大,今年会达到GDP的10%以上,同时,净外国直接投资预计会大幅下降,因而这个国家需要借款更多。其中一个最脆弱的新兴市场货币正处于急剧下降的边缘。







Not again不要再来一次

In contrast, the Asian emerging markets generally look the safest, taking all six slots at the bottom of the table. The main exception is South Korea, which, thanks to its large short-term foreign debts and highly leveraged banks, is deemed to be as risky as Poland. (Vietnam, though not included in the table, also scores high on the risk rating). South Korea is in much healthier shape than during the 1997-98 crisis. For example, it is expected to move back to a small current-account surplus this year and its reserves are much larger. But its banks and its currency still look vulnerable. The won has already fallen by almost 40% against the dollar over the past year, swelling the local-currency value of its foreign debts. Increased financial jitters in east Europe could make it harder for South Korea to roll over the $194 billion debt which falls due this year. But currency-swap agreements with America, Japan and China will give it plenty of firepower to draw on.

相比之下,亚洲的新兴市场大体上看起来是最安全的,占据了列表底部的六个席位。一个很重要的例外是韩国,由于有大量的短期外债和高调控的银行,被认为和波兰处于同样的风险。(越南,尽管不包括在列表中,仍然有高风险率)。比起1997-1998年的金融危机,韩国处于更好的状况。例如,它今年有小额的经营账户盈余,并且储备也更庞大了。但是银行和货币仍然看起来很脆弱。在过去的一年里,韩元兑美元已经下降了将近40%,本国货币对外债的价值增加了。在东欧增长的财政焦虑是韩国更加困难支付今年到期的1940亿美元的债务。但是与美国,日本,中国达成的互惠外汇信贷协议将会给它带来具有强大火力的鼓励。

The overall score in the table only ranks countries’ relative risks. To assess the absolute risk of a crisis you need to estimate external-financing needs (defined as the sum of the current-account balance and the stock of short-term debt) over the next 12 months. Jonathan Anderson, at UBS, has calculated the gap between this and the stock of foreign-exchange reserves for 45 countries. The good news is that only 16 of them have a financing “gap”; in all the others, reserves are more than sufficient to cover a year’s worth of payments, even if there were no new capital inflows. Virtually all of those 16 countries are in central and eastern Europe. They include only two large emerging economies from outside the region: Pakistan, which already has an IMF programme, and South Africa. By contrast, South Korea should not have a financing gap, thanks to its expected move back into current-account surplus. Most emerging economies’ large reserves will help to keep them out of danger. Unfortunately, the longer that the credit crunch continues, the more those reserves will start to dwindle.

在列表的综合分数中只是排列了国家的相对风险。为评定危机的绝对风险需要估计外部筹资需求(定义为经常账户余额和股票短期借款的总和)在接下来的12个月中。UBS(瑞士银行)的Jonathan Anderson已经计算出45个国家外汇股票储备与这个的差距。好消息是只有16个有融资“差距”;在其他的国家中,尽管没有新的资金流入,但储备还是可以充分支付一年的款项的。实际上所有这16个国家都在中欧和东欧。他们只包括来自这个区域外的两个大的经济体:巴基斯坦和南非,已经有一个IMF计划。相比之下,韩国本不该有一个融资差距,因为有经常账户的盈余。大多数新兴经济体的高储备会帮助他们处于危险之外。不幸的是,信贷紧缩持续的越久,更多的储备会下降。

发表于12:29 | 阅读全文 | 评论 2 | 编辑 | 分享 0腐败如何摧毁一个国家?2009-03-01
Corruption in Kenya 肯尼亚的腐败



How to ruin a country

如何摧毁一个国家?




Feb 26th 2009
From The Economist print edition





John Githongo (shown below) fought the corruption that is destroying Kenya but was defeated


腐败正在毁灭肯尼亚。反腐斗士John Githongo(见下图)壮志未酬








THIS is the tale of the tragic failure of a brave and honest man appointed to expose corruption by a new Kenyan president who came to power on a wave of high-minded enthusiasm in late 2002, claiming to be a clean-handed reformer. Within a few years the brave man, John Githongo, is betrayed by the president, Mwai Kibaki, and by most of the big man’s closest colleagues, many of whom prove themselves to be patently corrupt. Mr Githongo is at first intensely loyal to Mr Kibaki, who gives him an office down the corridor in State House. But the whistleblower comes to realise that the president acquiesces in corruption of the grossest kind, and flees for his life into exile.





这是一个失败者的悲剧故事。此人勇敢而诚实,系肯尼亚总统娒瓦伊·齐贝吉(Mwai Kibaki)委以重任的一名反腐斗士。2002年年末当选的这位新总统在当时很有一番激浊扬清的高贵热忱,自诩为两袖清风的改革者。未过数年,这位大人物及其多数亲信接连背叛了英勇的John Githongo,事后证明,总统身边的这些同僚显然也是一群贪官污吏。起先,Githongo对齐贝吉还极为忠诚,后者在内罗毕国家宫(State House)走廊处给他安置了一间办公室。但不久这名揭发者就发现总统竟默许最严重的腐败行为发生,为了不遭灭口,他被迫亡命天涯。



There is far more to this gripping saga than that. It is a down-to-earth yet sophisticated exposé of how an entire country can be munched in the clammy claws of corruption. It is also a devastating account of how corruption and tribalism—the author prefers the grander term ethno-nationalism—reinforce each other, as clannish elites exploit collective feelings of jealousy or superiority in an effort to ensure that their lot wins a fat, or the fattest, share of the cake. Hence the book’s title: “It’s our turn to eat”.





扣人心弦的叙事之下,大作挖掘的是远为深沉的层面。它平实无华却又深入严密地向读者展现,一个完整的国家是怎样被贪官们黏糊糊的巨爪东分西扯,啃得千疮百孔的。此外,作者令人惊悚的记述还揭示出腐败与部落文化二者间又是如何互辅和强化的。(作者偏好采用“族群式民族主义”(ethno-nationalism)这样貌似更宏大的专业术语)。比如,宗族内的精英分子利用族群集体性的嫉妒或优越感,力图保证本族那块地盘能赢得一块肥美或最肥美的“蛋糕”。因而,此书就叫《轮到我们就餐了》。


Mr Githongo, who reported for The Economist (among other journals) in the 1990s, is portrayed by the author, an outstanding former Financial Times journalist, to whose house in London he fled, as a complex character: jovial, moody, dogged, ingenious and understandably obsessive. Through his prism, the author describes Kenya’s history over the past two decades, “probing the roots of a dysfunctional African nation”.





上世纪90年代,《经济学人》周刊便报道过Githongo。在他逃亡时落脚的伦敦寓所,一名杰出的前《金融时报》记者将他描绘成一位颇复杂的人物:此人有时怡然自乐,有时郁郁寡欢,有时“冥顽不化”,有时又敏锐乖巧。言谈间,似乎对过往难以释怀,但它看上去又合乎情理。通过Githongo的多维观察,过去20年来的肯尼亚历史在书中得以呈现,作者试图“追问一个功能严重失调的非洲国家,其一盘散沙的病根在哪里”。



After independence in 1963, Jomo Kenyatta and his mainly Kikuyu inner circle steadily plundered the country, ensuring that their fellow Kikuyus and closely related Meru and Embu groups, together comprising some 28% of Kenya’s people, acquired an ever-larger slice of the land. After his death in 1978, his successor, Daniel arap Moi, who hailed from the much smaller Kalenjin-speaking group of tribes, reckoned it was their turn to eat—and how. Eventually, in 2002, in what looked like a pan-ethnic revolt against Mr Moi’s lot, Mr Kibaki, another Kikuyu, won a multiparty election amid hopes that Kenya would at last have a decent, reasonably clean administration in which merit rather than tribe would be the way to advancement. Mr Githongo’s appointment as the government’s anti-corruption tsar was hailed as a happy sign of intent.





自1963年肯尼亚取得独立之后,乔莫·肯雅塔(Jomo Kenyatta)与他的核心集团(以基库尤族人为主)便一直在有条不紊地洗劫这个国家。当权者的强取豪夺保证了基库尤族人及与其过从甚密的梅鲁/恩布集团(三方大约合占肯尼亚总人口的28%)始终能在土地分配中占据绝大的份额。而到1978年,肯雅塔死去,来自操卡伦金族族语的弱小部落的继任者丹尼尔·阿拉普·莫伊(Daniel arap Moi)则开始算计能否也分一杯羹,是啊,风水轮流转———也该他们狠狠地咬上一口了。终于到2002年,莫伊先生时运不济,一次貌似泛族群的暴动将他的“蛋糕”夺去了。而另一位基库尤族人———齐贝吉先生则乘势赢得多党制选举的胜利。这位新总统当时所憧憬的肯尼亚将会是一个多么美好的国家:廉洁奉公的当局,因操守可嘉而深具公信力,在这里德性是官员进身之阶,任人唯族将成为历史。他曾寄望于Githongo在肯尼亚反腐风暴中扮演“沙皇”角色,此番任命还被外界誉为当局意图肃清流弊的可喜前奏。



No such luck. Mr Githongo almost immediately spotted a massive scam, to be known after a murky company called Anglo-Leasing, that creamed off some $750m mainly by overbilling
the state—with ministerial connivance—in some 18 projects. He noted that more than half of these scams had originated in Mr Moi’s era but had deftly been carried over into the new and supposedly clean one. It soon became clear that not only were some of the most senior ministers in the government involved but also that the president was unwilling to do anything about it.





没这么幸运。Githongo几乎立即发现了一个大骗局。在运作18个工程项目的途中,由于相关部门的纵容和包庇,一家形迹可疑的Anglo-Leasing公司通过超额支付(overbilling)成功提取了大约75亿美元的公共资金。此案在当时闹得满城风雨。他留意到,超过半数的诈骗来源于莫伊时代,但也有一部分巧妙地流入“政治清明”的新时代的荷包中。很快,幕后黑手浮出了水面,不仅身居高位的部长们涉案其中,就连齐贝吉总统也不甘寂寞,“湿了鞋”。



Moreover, as Mr Githongo made secret tapes of conversations with these villains, two more things became equally clear. The main perpetrators, bound by a tight code of ethnic solidarity, flagrantly appealed to him, as a fellow Kikuyu, to be loyal to his tribe. He also realised, even after he had fled into exile, that this so-called “Mount Kenya Mafia” was determined to use some of its ill-gotten gains to fill its party’s coffers in an effort to win the general and presidential elections due at the end of 2007. This group would stop at nothing to hold on to power.





此外,Githongo将他与这些罪犯的谈话秘密录音过后,另外两件事情也同样有些眉目了。为了不影响整个族群团结,基库尤族人通常都会受到严格的行为规范的约束,而那些主犯自视与Githongo同族,则明目张胆地希望他能将部族利益放在首位,忠实于他的部落。他也意识到———即便流亡海外后———这个所谓“肯尼亚山黑手党”(“Mount Kenya Mafia”)的宗派集团早已决定从它的不义之财中抽出一部分,注入到其政党名下,充当竞选活动资金,以便能赢得预计在2007年年末举行的普选和大选。为了继续当权,他们会不择手段的。



In the event, when it seemed that Raila Odinga, the populist presidential candidate whose campaign was full of anti-Kikuyu innuendo, was winning the race in late 2007, the old guard around Mr Kibaki set about fiddling the result, prompting riots and ethnic massacres around the country in which some 1,500 perished and at least 300,000 were displaced. After two months of turmoil and political paralysis, a shabby and unwieldy compromise was reached under the aegis of the UN’s former secretary-general, Kofi Annan, whereby Mr Kibaki held on to the presidency while Mr Odinga became prime minister.





结果,当一位标榜能代表劳苦大众的总统候选人奥廷加(Raila Odinga)眼看就要赢得2007年的竞选时(奥氏含沙射影,矛头直指基库尤族人),齐贝吉身边的保守派便着手篡改计票结果,并煽动***和种族屠杀,全国约有1500人因此丧命,至少30万人流离失所。持续2个月的骚乱和政治瘫痪结束后,因联合国前秘书长安南出面斡旋,一项失之偏颇而又僵硬的妥协达成了。齐贝吉继续执掌总统大权,奥廷加则变身为总理。



Kenya, meanwhile, had been torn apart as never before. Mr Odinga, like President Barack Obama’s father, is a Luo, Kenya’s third-most-populous group, which fiercely considered that it was its “turn to eat”. It had grievously missed out under two Kikuyu-dominated administrations and under Mr Moi’s Kalenjin one. One of the most disturbing aspects of the book is the dismal performance both of the World Bank and of Britain’s Department for International Development (DFID). The bank has been indulgent towards Kenya’s leaders and inept when it tried to do something about their corruption. There was a “dangerous cosiness” between the bank and Kenya’s government.





已陷入分崩离析的肯尼亚面临从未有过的危机。与美国总统奥巴马的父亲一样,奥廷加也是卢奥族人(肯尼亚第三大人口族群)。他强烈认为,是时候轮到他们“咬上一口了”。基库尤族人曾两次执政该国,莫伊先生所属的卡伦金族人也享受过它的美味,掐指一算,当时的卢奥族人错过了多少黄金期!本书最叫人如坐针毡的一点是,世界银行、英国海外开发署(DFID)的形象很不妙。它们在非洲地区的表现太差劲了。对于肯尼亚领导人,世行似乎缺乏管教,当它想到要对他们的腐败做点什么时,它又显得比较无能。世行与肯尼亚政府之间总有种暧昧的“危险的默契”。



For the current British government, the book is even more disturbing. A flagship of Tony Blair’s New Labour, DFID was a new ministry no longer subordinate, as its predecessors had been, to the Foreign Office. It disbursed cash for aid far more abundantly than ever before and with fewer strings, betokening a determination to “end poverty”. As Michela Wrong puts it, the amount of money which it disbursed became “the only solid yardstick of progress, hardly a situation likely to encourage discrimination amongst officials responsible for approving projects”. When Britain’s then high commissioner to Kenya, Sir Edward Clay, one of a small band of righteous heroes in the book, spoke out courageously against corruption, his DFID counterparts did their best to undermine him.





对时下的英国政府来说,此书可能更让人不快。作为布莱尔的新工党手上的一张王牌,当时的海外开发署不再像往常那样隶属于外交部,堪称意气风发。它所提供的外援资金也大大超过了从前,且附带条件越来越少,这都预示着海外开发署真是决意要“根除贫困”了。正如米凯拉·朗(Michela Wrong)所言,支付的款额数量事实上已成为“衡量进步水平的唯一的可靠标准,而那种或可促使负责项目审批的官员提高鉴别力的情形则被排除在外了。”彼时驻肯尼亚的英国高级专员爱德华克莱爵士(Sir Edward Clay)———本书中屈指可数的几位富有正义感的主人公之一———挺身而出,痛陈腐败之祸,但开发署的搭档们却尽可能地挖他的墙脚。



A year after the corrupt election fiasco of late 2007 and early 2008, nothing fundamentally has changed. Almost all the top ministers and civil servants fingered by Mr Githongo are still in office; so is Mr Kibaki. Even if Mr Odinga were president, as the majority of voters almost certainly intended him to be, few Kenya-watchers would be confident that the basics would have changed, except that a new elite would be “eating” better. The mixture of greed and ethnic exploitation is as potent and combustible as ever: a sorry state of affairs.





尽管可耻的贿选以惨败告终(07年末至08年初),时间也过去一年有余,但这个国家并未从根本上产生任何改变。几乎所有被Githongo揭发过的高层部长和事务官迄今仍在职,总统齐氏照例高枕无忧。即便能如多数选民所希冀的那样———奥廷加得偿所愿当上总统,那些肯尼亚观察员们又有几位能拍着胸脯保证,已被蛀虫蚕食虚空的国家根基就能焕然一新呢?当然,他们惟一敢打包票的就是,又一位吃相更凶猛的“洗心革面”的精英分子诞生了。这种杂糅着贪婪与利用族群矛盾趁火打劫的渔翁心态的合而为一,依然杀伤力强烈———多么遗憾的形势啊。







————

又是一个非洲题材。不是艾滋,就是屠杀,不是屠杀,就是腐败。即便谈论的是事实,说多了也会让人反胃。觉得翻译越来越难了。原文有些地方很雷人,喜欢兜圈子说话。以后不随便乱报这种选题了。又,本书作者是米凯拉·朗。别误会成译文中反复出现的主人公Githongo。舛误处,请多指教:)


发表于12:24 | 阅读全文 | 评论 3 | 编辑 | 分享 0行贿受贿,腐败成风2009-02-27Grease my palm
贿赂我吧
Nov 27th 2008
From The Economist print edition
Bribery and corruption have become endemic
行贿受贿,腐败成风

RUSSIA may not have democratic elections or the rule of law, but it does have one long-standing institution that works: corruption. This has penetrated the political, economic, judicial and social systems so thoroughly that is has ceased to be a deviation from the norm and become the norm itself. A corruption index compiled by Transparency International gives Russia 2.1 points out of ten, its worst performance for eight years and on a par with Kenya and Bangladesh. Ordinary Russians are well aware of this, with three-quarters of them describing the level of corruption in their country as “high” or “very high”.

俄罗斯也许没有民主选举或者法治制度,但却的确有一个悠久的传统:腐败。腐败已经深深地渗透到俄罗斯政治、经济、法律及社会系统的方方面面中,以至于腐败已经不再被看作是对社会规范的背离,腐败本身已经成为了社会规范。在一项由“透明度国际”组织出具的腐败指数中,俄罗斯获得了其8年以来的最差得分2.1分(满分10分为最廉洁),与肯尼亚、孟加拉国在一个档次。普通俄罗斯市民对此有十分清醒的认识,有四分之三的俄罗斯人认为其国家腐败程度为“高”或者“非常高”。

The size of the corruption market is estimated to be close to $300 billion, equivalent to 20% of Russia’s GDP. INDEM, a think-tank that monitors and analyses corruption, says 80% of all Russian businesses pay bribes. In the past eight years the size of the average business bribe has gone up from $10,000 to $130,000, which is enough to buy a small flat in Moscow.

腐败市场的规模估计接近3000亿美元,相当于俄罗斯GDP的20%。据俄罗斯智囊团INDEM的监测分析,有80%的俄罗斯企业行贿。在过去的8年中,商业贿赂平均值从$10,000.00上涨到$130,000.00,这已足够在莫斯科购买一套小的公寓。

A businessman who was stopped by the traffic police in Moscow recently was shown a piece of paper with “30,000 roubles” written on it. He refused to pay and asked the policeman why he was being asked so much for a minor offence. “The answer was that the policeman had bought a flat for his mother in Bulgaria and he now needed money to do it up,” the businessmen said. Far from being a taboo subject, corruption is discussed openly by politicians, people and even the media—but it makes no difference.

一位商人最近在莫斯科被交警扣住,交警向他出示了一张写有“30000卢布”的纸条。商人拒绝交钱,并问交警为何他要为如此小的违章付如此多的钱。“那是因为这个警察刚刚在保加利亚为他母亲买了一套房子,现在需要钱来装修。”这位商人解释说。腐败问题并没有成为一个禁忌话题,政府官员、普通民众甚至媒体对此都可以公开讨论,但这没有任何意义。

Corruption has become so endemic that it is perceived as normal. Opinion polls show that the majority of Russians, particularly the young, do not consider bribery a crime. The Russian language distinguishes between “offering a reward” to a bureaucrat for making life easier for you, and the brazen (and sometimes violent) extraction of a bribe by a bureaucrat.

腐败变的无处不在,市民对此已经熟视无睹。有调查问卷表明,俄罗斯大部分人,尤其是年轻人,并不将受贿视为犯罪。“提供报酬”给某一官员来让自己的日子过的舒服些,跟官员无耻的(有时候还用暴力的)强行索要贿赂,在俄语的表述中是存在区别的。

Small and medium-sized businesses suffer the most. Dmitry Golovin, who owns a tool-leasing company in Yekaterinburg, explains: “You go to the local administration to get permission for something and they send you to a private firm that will sort out the paperwork for you, which happens to be owned by their relatives.”

中小型企业对此感受最为深切。Dmitry Golovin在叶卡捷琳堡拥有一家工具租赁公司,他解释说:“你去当地的管理部门申请某些事情的许可,他们就会让你去一家私人公司,让这家公司替你整理申报文件,其实这家公司是由官员的亲戚开的。”


What are we going to do about this?
我们对此该怎么办?

The reason for the persistent corruption is not that the Russian people are genetically programmed to pay bribes, but that the state still sees them as its vassals rather than its masters. The job of Russian law enforcers is to protect the interests of the state, personified by their particular boss, against the people. This psychology is particularly developed among former (and not so former) KGB members who have gained huge political and economic power in the country since Mr Putin came to office. Indeed, the top ranks in the Federal Security Service (FSB) describe themselves as the country’s new nobility—a class of people personally loyal to the monarch and entitled to an estate with people to serve them. As Russia’s former prosecutor-general, who is now the Kremlin’s representative in the north Caucasus, said in front of Mr Putin: “We are the people of the sovereign.” Thus they do not see a redistribution of property from private hands into their own as theft but as their right.

腐败如此顽固,不是因为俄罗斯民众有行贿的遗传因子,而是因为国家政府仍然将国民视为其奴隶臣子,而不是国家的主人。俄罗斯执法者的工作是为了保护国家政府的利益不受普通民众的侵害,利益的具体代言人则是执法者们特定的上司。这种心理尤其滋生于过去的(也并不算是过去的)克格勃成员中,自从普京入主后,他们在这个国家攫取了巨大的政治、经济势力。甚至,俄联邦安全局的高层都将自己视为国家的新贵族——他们个人只对国家元首效忠,是有资格享受被人服侍的阶层。俄罗斯前检察总长,现克里姆林宫在北高加索的全权代表,曾在普京面前说:“我们都是元首的人”。因此他们并不将财产从私人手里转移到他们手里的再分配视为偷窃,而是视为他们的权力。

The precedent was set by the destruction of the Yukos oil company in 2003-04. Mr Khodorkovsky, its then owner, was arrested at gunpoint in Siberia and after a sham trial sent to jail where he has spent the past five years. Yukos was broken into bits and, after an opaque auction, passed to Rosneft, a state oil company chaired by Igor Sechin, the ideologue of the siloviki.

2003-2004年Yukos(尤科斯石油公司)的毁灭成为此类先例。霍多尔科夫斯基,Yukos当时的所有者,于西伯利亚,在枪口下被捕。然后经过不公正审判,他被投入监狱,并在那里度过了过去的5年。Yukos被碾为齑粉,在一场不透明的拍卖后,被出让给了Rosneft(俄罗斯石油公司),一家国有石油公司,董事长是Siloviki(西罗维基)的空想家,伊戈尔?谢钦。

Tricks of the trade
交易骗局

Mr Khodorkovsky was accused, among other things, of selling Yukos’s oil through offshore trading companies to minimise taxation. So now Rosneft sells 30-40% of its oil through a Dutch-registered trading firm, Gunvor, whose ownership structure looks like a Chinese puzzle. The rise in Gunvor’s fortunes coincided with the fall of Yukos. A little-known company before 2003, Gunvor has grown into the world’s third-largest oil trader, which ships a third of Russia’s seaborne oil exports and has estimated revenues of $70 billion a year.

霍多尔科夫斯基受到多项指控,其中一项指控其通过境外贸易公司销售Yukos公司的石油来逃税。而现今,Rosneft有30%-40%的石油通过一家名为Gunvor的贸易公司来销售,这家公司的注册地是荷兰,但是其所有制结构却是个谜。Gunvor的崛起正好伴随着Yukos的败落。2003年以前Gunvor还是一家名不见经传的小公司,现如今已成为全球第三大石油贸易商,俄罗斯石油海运贸易中有三分之一由该公司出口,其年收入据估计有700亿美元。

One of Gunvor’s founders is Gennady Timchenko, who sponsored a judo club of which Mr Putin was honorary president and worked in an oil company that was given a large export quota as part of a controversial oil-for-food scheme set up by Mr Putin during his time in St Petersburg. Mr Timchenko says he was not involved in the deal and his success is not built on favours.

Gennady Timchenko是Gunvor的创建人之一,他曾赞助了一家柔道俱乐部,普京是该家俱乐部的名誉主席。在普京任职于圣彼得堡期间,他曾发起过颇具争议的石油换食品计划,而Timchenko当时所在的石油公司则从该计划当中获得了大份石油出口配额。Timchenko说他当时并未参与此项交易,自己的成功也并不是建立在别人的恩惠之上。

The Yukos case changed the logic of corruption. As INDEM’s Mr Satarov explains, before 2003 officials simply took a cut of businesses’ profits. After Yukos they started to take the businesses themselves. These days businessmen pay bribes as much to be left alone as to get something done. They call it a “bribe of survival”.

Yukos事件改变了腐败的形式。据俄罗斯智库INDEM的Satarov分析,在2003年之前,官员们只是简单的从企业所得中分一杯羹。而在Yukos 事件之后,他们开始越俎代庖,自己插手经济。近来,商人们行贿不再单为办成事儿,而更是为了防止被乱插一脚。他们称此为“生存的贿赂”。

This new form of corruption is changing the structure of the Russian economy. “Yeltsin-era corruption ended in a privatisation auction, even if it was a fake one. The new corruption ends in the nationalisation of business,” says Yulia Latynina, a writer. Nationalisation is not quite the right word, however, because sometimes state property is quietly transferred into private bank accounts. And even where a business is formally controlled by the state, the profits or proceeds from share sales may never reach its coffers.

新型腐败正在改变俄罗斯经济的结构。一位名叫Yulia Latynina的作家说“虽然这场拍卖是虚假的,但它是叶利钦时代腐败的终结,而新型腐败的终结是商业国有化。”然而国有化并不是一个十分确切的描述,在有些情况下国有资产被暗中转移入了私人账户。而且即使这些企业是由国家控股的,其股票销售收益也可能永远都没有计入国库。

When Mr Medvedev was chairman of Gazprom, a state-controlled gas giant, one of his first jobs was to oversee the return of assets which had been siphoned off under the previous management. But as Boris Nemtsov and Vladimir Milov, two opposition politicians, explain in a recent book, “Putin and Gazprom”, in the past few years Gazprom’s control over its multi-billion-dollar insurance company and part of its pension funds has passed to a private bank called Rossiya, controlled by Yury Kovalchuk, who is thought to be a friend of Mr Putin’s. The bank advertises itself as “Rossiya: the country of opportunities”.

梅德韦杰夫曾经是国有天然气公司Gazprom(俄罗斯天然气公司)的董事长,上任伊始,他的首要任务之一就是监督上一届管理层归还侵吞的资产。然而正如反对派人士Boris Nemtsov和 Vladimir Milov在其新书《普京和Gazprom》中所说,在过去的几年当中,Gazprom项下的价值数十亿美元的保险公司以及其部分抚恤基金已经转移到一家名叫Rossiya的私营银行名下,这家银行由Yury Kovalchuk控制,他被认为是普京的朋友。该银行这样宣传自己:Rossiya, 机遇的国度。

A necessary evil?
无法避免的灾难?

Both Mr Medvedev and Mr Putin condemn corruption in public. In a recent speech Mr Putin grumbled: “Anywhere you go, you have to go with a bribe: fire inspection, ecologists, gynaecologists—everywhere. What a horror!” Mr Medvedev’s first presidential promise was to fight corruption for the Russian public, and recently he thundered: “We have to do something. Enough of waiting! Corruption has become a systemic problem and we have to give it a systemic answer.” Soon afterwards he appointed himself head of a new anti-corruption committee.

梅德韦杰夫跟普京在公开场合下均对腐败发表过谴责。在最近发表的一次演说中,普京曾经抱怨说“不管你去哪里,你都要随身带好钱,(去做)消防检查,(去见)生态学家,(去看)妇科医生,所有的地方,这太糟糕了!”梅德韦杰夫当选总统后首先承诺要为了俄罗斯大众跟腐败做斗争。他最近对腐败发出恐吓:“我们必须要做些什么了,我们已经等的够长了,腐败已经成为系统问题,我们需要系统的去处理它。”此后不久他任命自己成为新反腐败委员会的领导者。

Mr Satarov says this may be more than just populism. “They feel that the system has become unmanageable. They also need to protect and legalise the wealth they have accumulated in the previous five years—hence all this talk about building a legal system.”

Satarov说这或许已经超越了单纯的民粹主义。“他们感觉到整个体系已经变得难以处理。同时他们还要保护5年以来所积累的财富并使之合法化,在此基础上才能讨论建立法律体系的问题。”



As a former lawyer, Mr Medvedev has started with legislation. A new draft law requires bureaucrats to declare their own and their family’s income and assets. But there are a couple of loopholes. First, the information about their income is confidential and available only to other bureaucrats. Second, the family is defined as spouse and under-age children—but not siblings, parents or grown-up children. “It is as if the government is telling everyone which accounts they should transfer the money into,” says Elena Panfilova, head of Transparency International Russia.

律师出身的梅德韦杰夫首先从立法开始着手。一项新的法律草案要求政府官员需申报其自身以及家庭成员的收入及资产。但这存在众多漏洞。首先,官员的收入信息对外保密,只对其他官员开放。第二,家庭成员的范围是:配偶或者未成年的子女。并不包括父母、兄弟姐妹以及成年子女。俄罗斯透明度国际的领导人Elena Panfilova对此评理说:“这好像是政府在教大家应该如何转移资产一样”。

The trouble is that corruption in Russia has become a system of management rather than an ailment that can be treated, explains Ms Latynina. Central to this system is the notion of kompromat, or compromising material. “It is easier to control someone if you have kompromat on them, so that is how a boss often chooses his subordinates,” she says.

Latynina女士认为困难在于腐败已经成为俄罗斯管理体系的问题,不再是料理食物那么简单。这个体系的核心是Kompromat,或者说是污点材料。她介绍说:“如果你有某人的污点材料,那么你可以很容易的控制他,很多老板都是这样来选他们的下属。”

The only way to fight corruption, explains Ms Panfilova, is through political competition, independent courts, free media and a strong civil society. Those things may not get rid of it, but at least they would establish uncorrupt norms. Yet fighting corruption from within the Kremlin would require the skills of a Baron Münchhausen, who famously escaped from a swamp by pulling himself up by his own hair. As Mr Khodorkovsky said in a recent interview: “The fight against corruption is a fight for democracy.” The interview cost Mr Khodorkovsky 12 days in solitary confinement. But the cost to Russia of allowing corruption to flourish is a lot higher.

Panfilova 女士认为,对付腐败的唯一途径就是通过政治竞争、独立法庭、自由的媒体已及一个强大的公众社会。这样或许无法彻底根除,但是却能够建立一个廉洁的规范。或许克林姆林宫战胜自身的腐败需要向著名的拜伦?蒙乔森(Baron Munchhausen)学习,他深陷沼泽中却通过拉自己的头发脱身。像霍多尔科夫斯基在最近的采访中说的那样,“与腐败斗争就是为了民主而斗争”这次采访导致霍多尔科夫斯基付出12天单独监禁的代价。但对俄罗斯来说,放任腐败横行的代价有些高。

发表于08:40 | 阅读全文 | 评论 0 | 编辑 | 分享 0老板们,当心了2009-02-27Theft and the downturn
偷窃行为和经济衰退
Employers beware
老板们,当心了!
Feb 24th 2009
From Economist.com

What departing workers take with them

员工离职时会带些什么走


IF YOU are losing your job, you might at least walk away with a competitive advantage. A survey for Symantec, an internet-security firm, suggests that some 60% of American workers who left their employers last year took some data with them. Respondents admitted that they had lifted anything from e-mail lists to customer information, with two-thirds of such workers using this stolen data in their new job. The most popular method of theft was taking hard-copy files (61%), while around half put data on an electronic-storage device such as a CD or USB stick. And it seems easy to do: 82% of departing employees said that no checks were carried out on what they had kept. Many also admitted to keeping electronic-storage devices given for their jobs, even PDAs and laptops.

如果你要被炒了,你怎么也得捞点资本再走吧。一项为网络安全公司赛门铁克进行的调查显示,去年大约有60%的美国员工在离职时都会带些资料走。被调查者们承认他们带走的东西不一而足,从电子邮件地址到客户信息,他们中2/3的人还会在新工作中使用这些资料。偷资料最广泛使用的方法是通过硬拷贝,这占到61%,还有50%的人使用CD或U盘。带点资料走也不是多难的事儿:82%的离职员工都说没人检查自己走时带了些什么。很多人还承认带走了工作中使用的电子存储设备,甚至是掌上电脑和笔记本。



发表于08:36 | 阅读全文 | 评论 0 | 编辑 | 分享 0title2008-12-31感谢电脑爱好者的投递
为什么我的MSN总莫名其妙弹出来一些广告?网友朱朱在“百度知道”、“雅虎知识堂”中都发了悬赏帖,可到现在她得到的那些答案和解决方法统统不管用,最后找到了《电脑爱好者》。记者随后询问了一些用MSN的朋友,回答也收到过这样“骚扰”广告的占到100%。“特别是最近,总是收到某三国WebGame(网页游戏)的广告,后面还跟着一个链接,点了以后就到了该网游的注册页面。奇怪的是,MSN显示我的这个好友是离线的状态”,公关公司的王小姐对记者说。直觉告诉我们,这些MSN账号可能已经被黑客盗取?长久以来,我们听过不少盗取QQ账号谋利的事情,可很少听说谁会盗取MSN账号的,因为MSN似乎没有什么谋利点。此番MSN盗号,背后有什么玄机呢?

MSN弹出广告背后
“想知道你的MSN好友里谁屏蔽了你吗?”后面跟着一个链接,表示点进去就可以查到。曾经点击过这个链接的网友对记者说,这个链接根本打不开,但点了之后,她的好友就经常会收到来自于她发出的这个信息了。由此看来,真的是中毒了,但凭多年市场推广的经验,美国捷思锐科技市场经理张东告诉记者,近段时间“流行”的内容为某网游宣传推广的MSN消息却没有这么简单。

“无需下载,打开网页,即可轻松游戏。http://haida8.com?=……”对网络营销颇有研究的胜天互联总裁赵江表示,这很显然是一种“病毒式营销”,各种邮件、博客、社区、视频分享网站都能见到,在网络上早就不是什么新鲜事了。那该网游为什么要用这样“骚扰”性,且带有病毒倾向的推广方式进行营销呢?该网游运营部经理表示,目前公司共有40多个合作商,而通过MSN发送链接可能是个别合作商为游戏所做的推广,但具体原因公司仍未了解。

病毒营销牵扯利益链
进入这款网游,记者找到了一篇关于招募游戏推广员的活动启事,其中写道:“我们为您量身定制了相应的推广方式和更有吸引力的利益分配模式。无论您在网吧、家里、办公室、宿舍,您都可以通过该系统实实在在的网上赚钱,享受边玩游戏边赚钱的乐趣。您需要做的仅仅是把这款游戏,通过网络、论坛、邮件、博客、MSN、QQ等介绍给和您一样喜爱游戏的朋友、同学、同事或其他玩家。那么,您就拥有了这个创业赚钱的大好机会。”

记者随后致电了该游戏平台的客服,据她介绍,申请推广员之后,会得到一个链接,这个链接的前半部分是游戏的注册页网址,而在后面会跟一个推广代码,每个推广员的都不同。当推广员把这个有着自己推广代码的链接发给朋友后,只要朋友点击,便可进入游戏注册页,同时,在游戏的推广后台会识别出这个人是经由某位推广员介绍进入游戏的。而一旦这个进入的新人成为玩家,并为游戏花钱,推广员就可以得到提成。

一位该网游的老玩家表示,细算下来,他在这款网游中平均每月消费在50元~100元之间,还属于中低消费人群。他的朋友中,在一个区开服几天就充值几百上千元的不在少数。记者在网上搜索了一下,发现这个推广手法被不少游戏所采用,推广员的提成在10%~20%不等。记者粗略地算了一笔账,假设一个推广员一天成功发展5位新玩家,一个月就将推广150位新玩家,假设这些玩家每月人均消费额为50元,那么推广员每月就能得到50元×15人×15%=1125元的提成。除此以外,推广员后台还有一套统计积分级别的规则,只要推广员达到某个级别(例如50级),则提成会升为40%,每月将拿到3000元!这样一来,推广员不仅能从新发展的玩家身上挣钱,原来发展的那些玩家,由于不停的游戏,也能给推广员带来不少收益。

MSN盗号技术门槛低
现在,我们明确了通过推广网游谋利的事实,那这件事又是如何同MSN弹出消息挂上钩的呢?计算机世界传媒集团友答网技术经理王华侨从技术层面为记者分析说,虽然这种现象很像之前的“QQ尾巴”病毒,但还不是一回事。.NET软件开发工程师郑浩宇同意这种说法,他说:“用户极有是在某些SNS网站上,邀请MSN好友加入时,泄露了自己MSN帐号和密码。”

喜欢泡在校内网、开心网等SNS网站上的网友一定对邀请MSN好友、QQ好友加入这个功能不陌生,只要输入自己MSN或QQ的账号和密码,邀请就会自动送达好友处。但是SNS网站都会承诺不保存这些隐私信息的呀,难道是骗人的?校内网技术人员在接受记者采访时表示,校内是用微软公开的、支持的API方式,获取用户的好友的,不会记录用户的密码。但据记者了解,微软是前不久才进一步开放了MSN的相关API的。(API,即应用程序标准接口,是应用程序调用系统功能的接口,在它的下面是Windows的操作系统核心,而它的上面则是所有的Windows应用程序。通俗的说,它是基于硬件功能而制定的一套规则,开发者在开发应用程序的时候,必须要遵照这个规则,以便硬件能执行他们开发出来的应用程序给出的指令。)

郑浩宇指出,微软这一做法是为了使这些网站可以通过MSN聚拢更多人气,而在开放这个API前,也有一些网站使用了其他方法,达到相同效果,这就是利用MSN机器人。“当你在某些SNS网站邀请MSN好有时,如果你同时正在MSN上,你会发现你的MSN会掉线,这是因为MSN机器人用你给的账号和密码,登录了你的MSN,向你的好友发邀请。并且在这之后,无论你的账号和密码有多么复杂,都会被记录。”事实上,由机器人登录MSN这种方式非常不安全,这时账号和密码是以明文的方式传递,极容易被捕获。“捕获的技术门槛很低,网上有现成的软件可以下载。”他说。可以想见,由于网游推广的诱人利润,一些推广员会利用这个手法来谋利。

王华侨补充说道,相对来说,QQ因为API不开放,所以现在感觉类似的广告信息少一些,但也不排除在将来会出现类似情况。微软方面对此表示,希望用户尽量不要在第三方网站登录网页版MSN。业内人士分析说,推广员瞄中MSN可能有几个原因,一是MSN本身是一种成本很低的营销平台;二是网络上研究获取MSN账号和密码的手段比较多,也比较成熟,即使推广员本身的技术水平不高也可以做到;三是,目前喜欢上SNS网站的用户以白领为主,而相对来说,这些人是WebGame的主流消费人群。

网游传销何时休
目标软件的一位市场人员告诉记者:“我认识一些推广员,不隶属于任何公司,兼做好几款游戏的推广,一个推不成就推另一个。”尽管这样,据他所知,能赚着大钱的推广员很少,“这个行业没什么门槛,也不是很正规,刷IP,做假人数等手法以前都出现过。游戏好的话还能挣点,但毕竟不是什么时候都有那么牛的游戏可以推的。”

一家网络游戏推广工作室的不愿透露姓名的负责人表示,从2006年开始这种发展下线拿提成的营销手段几乎与传销无异,但其带来的效果却非常明显。如今,这种销售模式已经被其他网游运营商竞相模仿,即便是网易、九城、巨人等国内知名厂商也不例外。而目前,法律方面对此的监管方式还是空白,网游产业已经进入恶性循环的“传销时代”。一些业内人士认为,这种非理性的竞争手段显露出国内网游市场已经饱和。

到底谁应该来为MSN频遭广告轰炸负责?经过一番采访,记者尤感尴尬,似乎各方都表示这是个别的推广员的个人行为。但我想,如果SNS网站不是只顾自己“网站兴隆”,而是能够多为用户考虑周到一些,避免泄露用户隐私并不是难事。同时,网游企业也能在推广方面少一些“搏一搏”的投机心理,沉下心来深耕细作,尽量避免产生负面影响而对整个行业造成伤害。要知道,推广制胜在本质上是产品制胜啊。

发表于17:23 | 阅读全文 | 评论 0 | 编辑 | 分享 0共129页 第一页 上一页 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 下一页 最后一页导航

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