What’s the logic behind Adam Smith’s move to fix capitalism?

时间:2018-07-11 单词数:3240

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亚当斯密斯的资本原教旨主义 _ 双语新闻

Capitalism in flames, populism and nationalism on the march across Europe, a US president bent on demolishing free trade, a British shadow chancellor calling openly for the overthrow of capitalism itself?.?.?.?the 21st century is not going to script.


The market system from which global prosperity has emerged over two centuries is now under attack from all sides, its basic legitimacy assailed from the right by critics of unfair competition and crony capitalism, from the left by campaigners against inequality and “market fundamentalism”.


More than any other, the Scottish political economist and philosopher Adam Smith stands at the centre of this ideological battlefield, while around him clash competing views of economics, markets and societies.

苏格兰政治经济学家、哲学家亚当斯密(Adam Smith)正站在这个思想战场的中央,各种关于经济学、市场和社会的相互冲突的观点在他周围碰撞。

For many on the right of politics, the author of The Wealth of Nations is a founding figure of the modern era: the greatest of all economists; an eloquent advocate of laissez-faire, free markets, the “invisible hand” and the liberty of the individual; and the staunch enemy of state intervention in a world released from the utopian delusions of communism.

对于很多持右翼政治观点的人士而言,这位《国富论》(The Wealth of Nations,全称《国民财富的性质和原因的研究》(Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations))的作者是现代时期的奠基人:他是最伟大的经济学家;是自由放任、自由市场、“看不见的手”以及个人自由这些概念的有力捍卫者;在一个摆脱了共产主义乌托邦幻想的世界里,他还是政府干预的顽固敌人。

For many on the left, Smith is something very different: the true source and origin of “market fundamentalism”, homo economicus and the efficient market hypothesis; the prime mover of a materialist ideology that is sweeping the world and corrupting real sources of human value; an apologist for wealth and inequality and human selfishness — and a misogynist to boot.

对于很多持左翼观点的人士而言,亚当斯密则是完全不一样的一个人:“市场原教旨主义”、经济人(homo economicus)以及有效市场假说的真正源头和发端;物质主义思想的主要推动者,这种思想正席卷全球、腐蚀人类价值的真正源泉;财富、不平等和人类私心的辩护者,而且还是个厌女者。

The real Adam Smith is a vastly wiser and more subtle thinker. He forces us to discard the usual simplistic slogans and tired clichés. But more than this: he still has a vast amount to teach us, not merely about economics and markets and trade, but about the deepest issues of inequality, culture and human society facing us today. Far from attacking Smith, we must turn to him again because we cannot understand, or address the problems of the modern world without him.