What This Means, How This Happened, What To Do Now.

What This Means, How This Happened, What To Do Now.

我的扛把子美国同学转发在Facebook上的一篇文章,也是非常难得的能听到的来自左派的反思,搬运来给大家阅读。进步的思潮是大势所趋,但是如果人们认为只需守株待兔,或是矫枉过正,那么将只能得到一个割裂的社会。本人英语水平捉急,如不能完整转达原文内涵,还望见谅。

原文链接:What This Means, How This Happened, What To Do Now | Current Affairs

作者:Nathan J. Robinson

This morning, the people of Earth awoke to find that the fate of the human species has been placed in the hands of reality television mogul and unconvicted sex criminal Donald J. Trump, who has been given access to the nuclear codes. This is, to somewhat understate things, a deeply troubling development. Trump is a man embodying every single noxious trait in the human character, a man that even Glenn Beck finds unhinged. For those of us who abhor white supremacism and sexual assault, or who believe that climate change and nuclear war threaten the survival of the planet, this is a state of emergency.

今早,这个星球上的人们醒来后不可思议地发现,人类的命运以及我们的核按钮竟被交到了一个登上真人秀的富豪,一个尚未被定罪的性犯罪者唐纳德·特朗普的手上。即使我们保守地来讲,这也预示着一种令人极度惶恐不安的未来。从特朗普这个人身上,我们几乎能枚举出人性中的每一个阴暗面。这个人,即使是Glenn Beck都觉得他脑子有毛病。(Glenn Beck,美国著名的保守派政治评论家。)对于我们这些憎恨白人至上主义、憎恨性犯罪的人,对于我们这些相信气候恶化、相信核战争会摧毁我们家园的人来说,这个国家的命运,怕是到了最危急的时候。

There is no time to sit around goggle-eyed and slack-jawed. We should ask a number of straightforward questions, and try to figure out what’s what. First, how did this happen? Second, what are its implications? And finally, what the hell do we do now?

我想我们没时间在这儿面面相觑目瞪口呆了,我们必须单刀直入来问几个问题,来想一想,这个世界到底怎么了?第一个问题,这(特朗普胜选)是怎么发生的?第二个问题,这意味着什么?以及,我们又他妈能做点什么呢?

But first, let’s take a breath. Yes, this is a disturbing event of extraordinary magnitude. Remember, though, that the U.S. presidency, while extremely important, is only a small part of the existing world. Nothing has exploded just yet, nobody has died, and we have a little while longer to figure out how to interpret this thing and brace ourselves for its consequences. Nobody quite knows what is about to happen, and while it might be worse than all of our fears, it could also end up not quite being nearly as bad as expected. If there is one thing this election has shown, it is that we just don’t know what the future holds. All we can do is try to remain calm and analyze it as soberly as we can.

不过不要太紧张,我们也可以先喘口气。没错,这件事确实不同寻常,超出我们所有人的预料。但是我们也应该明白,总统一职,虽然重要,也只是这个国家的一部分而已。这个世界还是一如既往地平静,没有大爆炸,也没有人死亡,我们还是有时间和机会来捋清现实并且接受未来的。

What, then, does the election of Donald Trump actually mean? Here is the important point: nobody knows. Anybody who says they know doesn’t know. This election is, first and foremost, a repudiation of the establishment, which means that the wisdom of pundits, experts, and elites has been proven hollow. So in trying to interpret this event, do not listen to those who insist they know things, or who confidently offer a new round of predictions for what will happen. We’ve entered the Age of the Unpredictable.

“特朗普的当选意味着什么”这个问题,很遗憾我们都不甚清楚。很多说自己明白的人,也不过是似是而非地装懂罢了。因为首先最重要的是,这次选举是一次对建制派的反击:我们所仰仗的那些智囊、专家和精英的智慧这次全都成了摆设。所以,如果大家真的想认清这件事,我建议大家不要再盲信那些自称很懂的人,也不要再搭理他们做出的预测之类。毕竟,我们已经来到了一个捉摸不定难以预料的时代。

At least in the very immediate aftermath, the consensus among liberals about their loss seems to be as follows: they underestimated the racism and sexism of the American people, and the degree to which this country was full of a dark and rotten hatred. As Paul Krugman summed up his own take-away:

People like me, and probably like most readers of The New York Times, truly didn’t understand the country we live in. We thought that our fellow citizens would not, in the end, vote for a candidate so manifestly unqualified for high office, so temperamentally unsound, so scary yet ludicrous. We thought that the nation, while far from having transcended racial prejudice and misogyny, had become vastly more open and tolerant over time. There turn out to be a huge number of people — white people, living mainly in rural areas — who don’t share at all our idea of what America is about.

在希拉里败选后,自由主义者们几乎是很快得出了统一的结论:他们低估了这个国家的种族主义和性别歧视的严重程度,这个国家被这些邪恶的思想带来的憎恨渗进了骨子里。就像Paul Krugman(纽约时报专栏作家,纽约市立大学经济系教授,2008年诺贝尔经济学奖得主,译者注)总结的那样:

“我,还有我众多纽约时报的读者们,现在真的不太懂这个国家了。我们本以为我们的人民绝不会投票给一个如此不宜居庙堂之上,如此喜怒无常,甚至荒唐可笑的人。我们本以为,这个国家早已远离了种族偏见和对女性的歧视,早已变得开放和兼容并包。然而我们看到的结果却是,这个国家有如此多的人,特别是居住在乡下的白人们,跟我们对这个国家的认识大相径庭。”

I have a strong feeling that Krugman’s perspective will become conventional wisdom among devastated blue-staters in the next few days. Trump won because of his appeals to racism and sexism, and his vicious misogynistic lies about Hillary Clinton. He won because a large percentage of the country is hateful and does not share progressive values.

我强烈地感觉到,在接下来的时间,Krugman的视角大概能代表蓝州人民普遍接受的视角:特朗普能够当选,完全是因为他唤醒了这个国家的种族主义和性别歧视,当然还有他恶意编造的,充满女性歧视的关于希拉里的谎言。他能够当选,完全是因为这个国家还有如此多的人心中满是恶意,拒绝接受我们的进步思想。

This is a tempting story for people on the left to tell themselves, because it exonerates them of any responsibility for the outcome. It is also an extremely discouraging story, because it suggests that the majority of voters are bad, nasty, deplorablepeople. Fortunately, this story is almost certainly misleading. One of the main problems here is that many Democrats in coastal cities know very few Trump voters. Thus they have a hard time making sense of these voters’ motivations. In order to understand Trump’s base of support, instead of trying to speak to and empathize with these voters, they look at statistical data. From that data, they see that these people express anxiety about race and immigration, and that they are not disproportionately poor. They thus conclude that Trump voters are motivated primarily by prejudice, and mock the idea that it is economic concerns that matter most to them.

这套说辞对左派来讲真的非常诱人,因为这样他们就可以心安理得,告诉自己:错的不是自己,而是这个国家。当然这套说辞也充满了消极的意味,因为它想表达这个国家的多数选民卑鄙无耻,无可救药。该庆幸的是,这理论应该不是真的,它有很大的误导性。它的一大问题在于,许多在东西海岸大城市生活的民主党人根本就不了解特朗普的支持者,所以他们也很难搞清楚这些选民选择特朗普的动机是什么。为了了解这些,他们没有切身实地与他们交流,而是选择看统计数据。从数据中,他们只看到这些人的特质之一是对移民对种族感到恐慌。紧接着,他们就得出结论:特朗普的支持者都是被(对种族和移民的)偏见驱动着去投票的。有人说经济问题才是这些人最关心的,民主党人对此嗤之以鼻,因为他们并没有觉得这些人有很明显的贫困。

If you adopt this theory, then you reach a somewhat fatalistic conclusion about Trump supporters. You can’t persuade them, because they’re racists, and racism is an irrational feeling. Instead, you fight them, by mocking them, and trying to turn out your own base. By treating Trump’s support as largely the product of racism, one gives up on any attempt to actually appeal to Trump voters’ concerns and interests, since racism is not an interest worth appealing to.

如果你也相信民主党人的这种理论,那么很可能你对特朗普支持者的看法就是:他们活该如此,没人能说服他们,因为他们是种族主义者,种族主义者都是没脑子的。你必然不会去试着感化他们,相反,你会竖起阵地来,开始抨击他们,取笑他们。对特朗普支持者的成见让人们放弃了去真正了解他们的利益和需求,因为你觉得:我们消灭种族主义者还来不及,还想考虑他们的利益?

This was what Democrats did. This was a campaign of mockery: Trump voters were treated with disdain. Hillary Clinton dismissed huge swaths of them as a “basket of deplorables.” To be a Trump supporter was to be dumb, a redneck, a misogynist.

民主党人所做的正是如此。这场选举的拉票活动充斥着取笑:特朗普的支持者被无限地污名化。希拉里把如此多的特朗普支持者称呼为basket of deplorable,让人们觉得,支持川普,就是愚蠢、红脖子、男权主义者等等等等。

Here’s the problem: if Democrats had actually spent time with Trump voters, as opposed to judging them by polls, they would have found this theory incomplete. They missed the fact that many Trump voters had a kind of undirected dissatisfaction and anger at the Establishment. For some, the source of this was most likely economics. For many, immigration. For others, it was probably simply an existential despair at the hopelessness of modern life, such as we all feel. But many of them simply didn’t knowwhat they were angry at. They just knew they were angry. Trump came along and gave them a convenient narrative: the source of this anguish was ISIS, Mexicans, and Hillary Clinton. This was very powerful. Democrats didn’t have a good counter-narrative. They lost.

问题就出在这里。如果民主党们当初真的肯把看民调的时间用一点点在与特朗普支持者们沟通上,他们一定一定能发现这套理论有问题。他们忽略了特朗普支持者对建制派对既得利益者不满的事实。对有些人来说,这种不满来自于经济问题;还有一些人,不满来自于移民的问题;也有很多人,他们的不满只是来自于对现代生活的失落,这种失落,我们每个人都在承受。可是这些人不能清晰地认识到他们的不满来自于哪里,总之他们就是不满。现在,特朗普来了,很直白地告诉他们,过得不好,就是因为ISIS,因为墨西哥人,还有希拉里这种人。这种说法简单但一针见血,非常有效。民主党对特朗普的这套说法却没有拿出针对性的反击来,最后,他们输了。

There are facts that complicate the simple “racist deplorables” explanation. As Nate Cohn of The New York Times noted, “Clinton suffered her biggest losses in the places where Obama was strongest among white voters,” meaning that this was “not a simple racism story.” There are plenty of people who voted for Obama in 2008 or 2012 who voted for Donald Trump in 2016. The important question is why? These are people who will happily vote for a progressive black president, but will turn around and vote for the Klan’s favored candidate four years later. What is going on?

更多的事实可以反驳简单的“可悲的种族主义者理论”。纽约时报的Nate Cohn发现,“希拉里输的最惨的地区,曾经还遍地都是是奥巴马的白人铁杆粉”,也就是说,在这些地方,种族主义理论说不通。许许多多在08年和12年支持奥巴马的人,在16年还支持了特朗普。为什么会这样呢?这些人曾经那么乐意去支持一位进步的黑人总统,又为什么会在四年以后,支持一个被3K党青睐的候选人呢?

The only thing we know is that this question won’t be answered easily or quickly. It depends on spending time with these people, understanding what truly makes them tick, and how to make them tick differently. Note that maybe it is racism that fueled their Trump votes. But it’s clear that racism is something that can beexacerbated by demagoguery. Just because someone is capable of being a racist doesn’t mean they will be one. We are all highly susceptible to social influences. Trump can make people more racist than they were otherwise inclined to be. The question for Democrats is how to get people to move in the other direction.

这个问题不好回答,除非我们能耐心地,多花点时间在这些人上,想想他们此举的目的,以及怎样让他们改变想法。记住,我们不排除种族主义驱使他们投票的可能性,但也要明白,“种族主义”也很可能是被煽动的行为夸大出来的。一个人有能力成为种族主义者,不代表他就会成为一个种族主义者。我们都会受到社会的影响,也许特朗普会让他们的种族主义倾向暴露出来,但对民主党来说,最重要的问题不是批判这些人,而是如何让这些人转向。

It’s important to recognize the extent to which the Trump vote was an undirected repudiation of the Establishment rather than an affirmative vote for anything. Liberals didn’t understand why none of Trump’s scandals (the fraud, the tax evasion, the sexual assaults) seemed to dim his support. They didn’t realize that Trump was abomb being thrown at the elite, which meant that (in some sense) the worse he was, the more people liked him. A vote for Trump is a Molotov cocktail. It is not nuanced. It is designed to do as much damage as possible. Pointing out that the Molotov cocktail does not share the thrower’s values, or cheats on its taxes, is not an effective rhetorical strategy. Because a vote for Trump is an attempt to blow up the government, it doesn’t matter at all whether Trump is a sleaze, sex predator, or vulgarian. He pisses off the right people, and that is what matters.

我们很有必要去搞清楚,对特朗普的支持,并不代表了对他及任何事物的肯定,相反,这是一种对建制派的无差别的反击。自由主义者并不明白为什么关于特朗普的种种黑料(诈骗,偷税,性侵等)并没有打消他支持者的热情。他们也不会懂,特朗普,其实是人们扔向精英阶层的一颗大炸弹——某种意义上讲,他越是烂,人们越喜欢他。他就像一个莫洛托夫燃烧弹(啤酒瓶燃烧弹),它不需要有多精巧,它被造出来的唯一目的就是最大程度搞破坏。你去指责一个燃烧弹不懂民意,偷税漏税,这根本就是缘木求鱼,完全没有作用,因为每张投给特朗普的选票,都是一次对当下政府的轰炸。没人关心这个炸弹是不是流氓痞子,总之他就是能怼你们这些建制派,这就足够了。

The most important parallel with Donald Trump’s victory is the surprise U.K. Brexit vote, in which pundits similarly confidently predicted that the country definitely wouldn’t vote to leave the European Union, only to have the country decisively vote to leave the European Union. Elites in London simply couldn’t imagine that there were enough people willing to make such a suicidal choice for the mere pleasure of delivering a middle finger to the Establishment. But they underestimated how much people hated the Establishment, having rarely traveled outside their insular cosmopolitan bubble. Having failed to appreciate the degree of latent rage simmering outside the urban center, they were blindsided. Likewise, as Krugman’s words illustrate, America’s liberal press could not believe that Donald Trump could ever be president. The outcome was so unthinkable that their inability to imagine it affected their assessment of its chances of occurrence.

一个与特朗普胜选很相似的例子是英国脱欧公投。这次公投,各家评论员都非常自信地预测英国绝对不会脱欧,结果惨遭打脸。伦敦的精英们怎么会想到,有如此多的人不惮选择这种自杀式的玩法,也要对既得利益者竖起中指。精英们从不肯离开自诩多元包容的城市气泡,他们也必然低估了这些人有多么的厌恶建制派。他们被城市的假象一叶障目,绝不见城外已经民怨沸腾,黑云压城。就像Krugman的话体现的那样,美国的自由主义媒体们,从未想过哪怕一丝的特朗普当选的可能,这种成见也必然影响了他们对大选形势的估计。

In fact, the most important lesson of this election is about the press. This disaster should cause a major reevaluation of political media, who failed utterly to appreciate the seriousness of what was happening. There is a good argument to be made that the media is responsible for creating Trump in the first place. But the press also thoroughly failed the country, by distorting reality to make it appear as if Clinton was more likely to win than she was. In doing so, they allowed people to rest easy who should have (and would have) been out trying to put the brakes on the Trump train.

事实上,这场大选也在媒体方面给我们狠狠上了一课。对于那些完全错估了当下形势的政治媒体来说,这场灾难理应给他们带来一次变革。有人说媒体错在从大选一开始就不应该把特朗普炒火。但是事实上媒体从头至尾都让我们失望了,他们扭曲事实,让人们错误地高估了希拉里当选的可能。这样一来,很多本应在投票日去阻止特朗普的人停下了脚步选择了待在家里。

Liberal commentators made a crucial error: instead of trying to understand how the world actually was, they interpreted the world according to their wishful version of it. Throughout the race, I saw dozens of commentators on the left insisting that Clinton was a shoe-in, and that the “horse race” was manufactured. Trump, they said, stood no chance. For example, Jamelle Bouie of Slate wrote in August:

There is no horse race here. Clinton is far enough ahead, at a late enough stage in the election, that what we have is a horse running by itself, unperturbed but for the faint possibility of a comet hitting the track. Place your bets accordingly.

自由派的评论家们也犯下了致命的错误。他们没有认真地去理解这个世界的本来面貌,而是一厢情愿地把它描述成自己希望的样子。整场大选,无数评论家们都在强调,总统对希拉里来说唾手可得。特朗普?毫无胜算。比如Slate网站的Jamelle Bouie在八月份写道:

“这根本就不像是一场赛马(这根本不是战斗!译者注)。希拉里领先实在太多了,就好像赛马里无需马手费力,马自己就会跑一样——当然,除非天降彗星砸到我们赛道上。好了,大家可以赶紧下注了。”

Plenty of others appeared similarly confident. Ezra Klein and Matt Yglesias of Vox were equally cocky. Yglesias insisted that Trump’s prediction of an American Brexit was a complete misunderstanding of the dynamics of Brexit. He also claimed to have insights proving that polls showing a Clinton lead actually underestimated her support. Klein crowed that Hillary’s exceptional debate performances had “left the Trump campaign in ruins.” Even a usually sober-minded leftist like Corey Robin of Brooklyn College confidently declared that “Clinton is going to win big-time in November.”

一样的自信在别处不断上演。Vox网的Ezra Klein和Matt Yglesias都非常的自信。Yglesias坚持认为,特朗普把美国大选比作英国脱欧公投是彻头彻尾错误的,完全误解了脱欧公投的机制。他还认为民调对希拉里领先的程度低估了。Klein扬言希拉里在竞选辩论时的出色表现,把特朗普的竞选活动直接粉碎了。即便是通常保持理性客观的自由主义者,例如布鲁克林学院的Corey Robin也自信地宣称,“希拉里在11月必将迎来大胜。”

This complacency was extremely damaging. Liberal pundits bought into myth (fabricated by the Clinton campaign) of Clinton as an “inevitable” president. This idea should have been disposed of permanently in 2008, as well as by Clinton’s weak primary performance against a socialist upstart. But there seemed to be a belief among the liberal press that if they just repeated it enough times, it would be destined to come true. This was sheer stupidity. By either explicitly or tacitly reassuring people that Clinton would definitely win, they diminished the sense of urgency among progressives. People could feel as if they didn’t need to do anything, because nothing inevitable needs help coming to fruition.

这种自负完完全全是毁灭性的。自由派的评论家们广泛地让人们误信了希拉里胜选,势不可挡的谣言(希拉里的竞选活动编造的)。这种观点要是放在2008年必然没有市场,因为那时希拉里在党内初选被一个社会主义者黑马(指奥巴马)击败。但是看起来左派媒体们相信,一个观点被重复得足够多,它就会成真。这实在是太愚蠢了。这种不间断的关于希拉里必胜的明说及暗示,减少了人们对进步主义者当下紧迫程度的认识。人们觉得什么都不需要做,因为必将到来的事情怎么会需要我们帮助来实现呢?

The press’s insistence that Clinton was doing fine was so ubiquitous that it distorted every progressive’s picture of reality. I fell victim to this myself. In February, I believed Trump was being massively underestimated, and wrote an article predicting with complete certainty that he would be president. In May, I said that the Democrats’ nomination of Clinton was a “suicidal mistake.” But then the drumbeat of inevitability began to penetrate my consciousness. I began to feel I was being alarmist, that I was letting my biases interfere with my judgment. After all, the pundits had their polling data. And they seemed so confident. I still felt so uneasy. Something felt wrong. But when Trump was accused of committing serial sexual assault, I began to feel as if they might be right. Perhaps Trump was over. I wrote that while “we should make sure the threat is truly vanquished before celebrating,” since it would be unprecedented to put someone who had admitted to sex crimes in the White House, “perhaps” we truly were rid of Trump.

媒体对希拉里胜选的乐观态度是如此的广泛,也就扭曲了自由主义者对现实的清醒认识。对此,我承认我也是一名受害者。在二月份时,我认为特朗普被严重低估了,于是写了一篇文章非常确信地预测特朗普会胜选。五月,我还认为,民主党提名希拉里是自杀性的错误。然而,接踵而来的关于希拉里必胜的擂鼓声开始击穿我的意识。我开始觉得我有些杞人忧天,我的偏见开始影响我的判断。毕竟,评论员们有那么多的民调数据,他们看起来那么自信——不过我仍然觉得不舒服,好像有什么事情不对劲。但是当特朗普被指控性侵时,我开始完全相信他们了。也许特朗普就此完了吧。我写道“在庆祝之前,我们要保证来自特朗普的威胁已经被斩草除根”,毕竟,一个被指控性侵的人入主白宫,这可是史无前例骇人听闻呢。“也许”我们真的把他甩掉了吧。

This was foolish. But I see how it happened. We progressives all fell into an echo chamber of wishful thought, just like the Republicans did during their primary. Trump couldn’t win, so he wouldn’t win. We forgot that there is a distinction between media representations of reality and reality itself. If the press had done their job, rather than just bullshitting, perhaps we would have been as alarmed as we should have been.

这很愚蠢很愚蠢。好在我还体会到了这是怎么发生的。我们这些进步主义者全都被困在了一个充满了我们所期望的想法的小屋子里,就像共和党人在他们初选时那样:特朗普赢不了,所以他不会赢。我们都忘记了,媒体对事实的报道和事实总是有偏差的。如果媒体能尽职地去报道,而不只是说废话,也许我们本可以被警醒。

The election of Trump is therefore a serious repudiation of media “experts.” Pundits like those at Vox position themselves as “explainers” of reality, disguising the fact that they are making an awful lot of things up in order to cover gaps in their knowledge. Trump’s election has shown that believing these types of claims to expertise can be positively dangerous. And yet it is almost certain the experts will persist in claiming superior knowledge of the world, even as they refuse to leave their D.C. and New York enclaves. There are no consequences to false predictions, even if you end up getting Donald Trump elected president, and it is unlikely that Ezra Klein and Matthew Yglesias will lose their jobs. (They have “pundit tenure.”) Indeed, Yglesias has already begun making his next set of predictions.

特朗普的胜选结结实实地打了媒体“专家”的脸。评论员们,就像Vox的那些,自诩为对现实的解释者,却刻意捏造了许许多多的事实,以掩盖他们在知识上的不足。特朗普的胜选告诉我们,盲信专家的意见可能会非常的危险。就算现在,这些专家们仍会坚持宣称他们掌握了世界最顶尖的知识,即使他们足不出户,从不肯离开华盛顿特区和纽约的牢笼。错误的预测并不会带来什么严重后果,特朗普胜选了,Klein和Yglesias这些人也不会丢掉工作。(他们有“永久评论员职位”)实际上,Yglesias已经开始搞他的下一轮预测了。

It is crucial, however, that the following lesson be learned well by progressives: these people do not know anything. Do not believe predictions, whether from this website or anywhere else. No political commentator or forecaster can offer you any real certainty, because they don’t have any special magic that the rest of us don’t have access to. Nate Silver may have been somewhat less wrong than everybody else. But Nate Silver was still wrong, or at least useless. (His predict-o-meter flopped all over the place over the course of the election cycle, making it a poor tool for calibrating one’s behavior.) Sam Wang of Princeton was totally discredited, having laughably predicted a 99% chanceof a Clinton victory.

不管怎样,对进步主义者来说,这一课很有必要:这些家伙根本就什么都不懂。今后我们不会再盲信任何预测,不管是网络预测还是什么其它的预测。政论家和评论员将不能提供任何真实可靠的确定预测,毕竟他们也没有什么特殊的魔法,没比我们高到哪里。Nate Silver(538网的编辑,因对往届大选结果的精确预测而声名鹊起,译者注)也许错的比别人少一点,但是他终究还是错了,至少可以说毫无意义。他关于结果的预测不断反复,导致他的可信度非常有限。普林斯顿大学的Sam Wang(神经生物学家,译者注)做的预测完全不可信,他竟然可笑地预估希拉里有99%可能胜选

The reason they do not know anything is clear: they are absolutely obsessed with empirical data. They love polls, even though polls by definition can’t account for the sorts of things that do not show up in polls. Manypeople treated Donald Trump’s contempt for polls as a sign that he was living in his own world. In fact, he was living in the real world, which is separate and distinct from the world of polls and data. The fundamental problem with poll-watching is that youreally never do know.

他们一无所知的原因很明显,他们太过分依赖于经验数据了。他们喜欢民调,尽管从定义上我们也知道,民调不能完全准确地反映未被调查者的情况。许多人认为特朗普不信民调,他肯定是活在自己的小世界里。实际上,他活在真实的世界里,这个世界与民调和数据迥然不同。只看民调数据的最根本缺陷在于我们对真实的情况一无所知。

Thus, going forward, we need to have far less confidence in the power of existing empirical data to predict and explain the world. There needs to be a complete reevaluation, not of techniques for estimating probability, but of the meaning and importance that is attributed to probabilities. The truth is that the world is far more unknowable than we think. Human beings have free will, or are at least highly unpredictable, which means that efforts to anticipate their behavior are destined to go poorly.

因此,从今往后,我们要保守看待经验数据在理解世界上的作用。我们看待经验数据的方法需要一场变革,但并不是说去改善我们做预测的技术手段,而是学着去理解概率背后潜藏的意义。事实就是这个世界远比我们以为的更深奥。每个人都有着自由的意志,非常的难以预料,因此仅从表象就去预测他们行动注定毫无意义。

Could this all have been avoided? It’s worth saying that in retrospect, running Hillary Clinton for president was never a very good idea. Running Clinton against Donald Trump was an especially bad idea, because all of Clinton’s weaknesses as a candidate played to all of Trump’s strengths. Clinton gave Trump precisely the kind of fodder (mini-scandals, shady dealings, etc.) on which his bombast thrives. She also happens to be a very poor campaigner, and a complacent one. The weakness was obvious even in the differing campaign slogans. “I’m With Her” is about the interests of the candidate. “Make America Great Again” is about the voters. Let’s learn an important lesson here: do not run a widely-despised ruling-class candidate who has open contempt for the white working class. That is a recipe for electoral catastrophe.

我们本可以避免这种情况吗?我想假如时光能够倒流,选择希拉里来对抗特朗普本身就是个错误的决定,因为希拉里身上的缺点不偏不倚地撞上了特朗普的优势。希拉里的那些黑料(邮件门、灰色交易等)刚刚好可以被特朗普的大嘴巴利用;希拉里也不是个合格的拉票者,而且她还非常自大。对比二人拉票的口号就能很明显发现希拉里的缺点。“I’m with her”表达的是候选人势力的壮大,而“Make America Great Again”体现的,却是选民切身的利益。因此这是宝贵的一课:不要再让那种蔑视白人工薪阶层的当权派来做候选人了,这必然会导致败选惨剧。

Could Bernie have done better? It seems a reasonable hypothesis. After all, Clinton lost because of the Rust Belt. As a populist, anti-Wall Street candidate focused on jobs, Sanders was well-positioned to strongly counter Trump in these states. Biden might have done even better, and I hope he regrets his decision not to run. But ultimately, these speculations are both impossible to evaluate and immaterial to the situation in which people now find themselves.

那么选择桑德斯能做的更好吗?这假设看起来说得通,毕竟希拉里输在了铁锈带(指美国的老工业地区,译者注)。而桑德斯作为一个强调就业且反华尔街的民粹者,在这些州理应能与特朗普分庭抗礼。拜登(副总统)也许能做的更好,我希望他对自己没有参选的决定感到后悔。不过说到底,这些假设也只是空想而已了,无法被验证。

What other lessons might actually be useful going forward, other than trying to understand voters, running better candidates, and never listening to a word pundits and polls say? Well, a small one is: never vote third-party in a swing state. Jill Stein ended up receiving very little of the vote, making it silly to attribute this catastrophe to her (as Paul Krugman immediately tried to do). Still, where margins are small, even tiny third-party percentages can make a huge difference. And since all Stein voters were probably just as horrified at last night’s outcome as the Clinton voters, the idea that there is no difference between “the lesser of two evils” is false. Having less evil is always better. Don’t vote third-party in a swing state. (And third-parties should probably find a new strategy for building their movement that involves more than just trying to sabotage a presidential election every four years.) Still, any Democrat who focuses their ire on Jill Stein is seriously missing the point of this election.

除了上边提到的亲近选民,慎待民调以及换个好点的候选人外,我们还能学到什么有用的东西呢?有一点是,在摇摆州绝对不要投第三党派。Jill Stein最终只拿到很少很少的选票,所以把败选完全怪罪到她(比如Krugman马上就这样)是很不可理喻的。但是也要知道,在那些差距很小很小的州,即使是很少很少的投给第三党派的票,也能发挥巨大作用。既然Jill的支持者在昨晚也跟希拉里的支持者一样非常的震惊,那么我想那种因为懒得两害相权取其轻而做出第三选择的想法应该是不攻自破了。动动脑子想一下,取其轻者总是对的。在摇摆州,请千万不要投第三党派。(也许第三党派应该想点新策略了,可别总是每四年就出来搅乱一场总统大选。)不过,因此而把罪都怪在Jill头上的民主党们,也是完完全全搞错了重点。

But a very limited amount of time should be spent on blame-slinging and “I told you so”s. Every single person who opposed Donald Trump should have many, many regrets. I have plenty of them myself. I regret that I didn’t do more for Sanders, and then that I didn’t do more for Clinton after Sanders lost. I should have been knocking doors. Instead I watched movies and wrote magazine articles and went to class. I wrote an academic article. An academic article! What on earth was I thinking? I regret that I allowed myself to be lulled into thinking everything would be alright, even though I knew deep down that there was no rational reason for feeling assuaged, and that the “experts” who were telling me Clinton would win didn’t know any more than I did.

我们也没时间花在互相责怪以及放马后炮上了。我相信每个不喜欢特朗普的人心里现在都已经充满了悔恨,比如我就是这样的。我后悔我当初没有为桑德斯做更多的事,他输掉以后,我后悔没有为希拉里做更多的事。我本应也去挨家挨户帮他们拉票,可我选择了看看电影,写写文章,然后上上课什么的。我还花了一堆时间写学术论文,学术论文!我到底在想什么啊?我真是后悔,尽管我明明知道没有理由松懈,尽管我明明知道那些乐观的专家们懂得也不一定比我多,可我还在自欺欺人以为岁月静好

The truth is, those of us on the left were complacent asses. All of us. When I wrote in February that Trump would definitely defeat Clinton, I believed that. But I didn’t act as if I believed it. If I’d really felt like I believed it, I should have been spending my every waking hour working to prevent this hideous outcome. I didn’t, though. And when all of us think of how uselessly we frittered away so much of our time, how much more we could have done, we may be kicking ourselves for years. Especially if the nuclear apocalypse shows up.

事实就是这样,我们之中的左派们真是狂妄的傻逼。其实我们全都是!当我二月份写文预测特朗普必胜希拉里的时候,我还坚信不疑。可是我并没有对此做相应的任何事。如果我真的对此坚信的话,我本应该多花点时间来阻止其发生——可是我没有。要是我们认真想想我们浪费了多少时间,想想我们本可以做的事,我们可能永远原谅不了自己。特别是等我们将来看到核战争的那天,估计后悔得肠子都青透了。

What’s going to happen now? For a leftist, liberal, or progressive, nothing good. There is complete Republican control of government. This means that even in the best case scenario, in which Trump turns out to be mostly bluster, as incapable at organizing a dictatorship as he is at running a hotel, we can expect to have every single progressive policy of the last eight years rolled back very swiftly. Goodbye, healthcare! Goodbye, moderate criminal justice reforms! Goodbye, mild attempts to rein in corporate malfeasance! It’s all down the tubes. Sayonara. (Probably. Again, keep in mind: nobody knows anything.)

接下来会发生什么呢?对左派、自由主义者、进步主义者来说,怕是没什么好事了。共和党完全掌控了政府。即使在最好的情况下,比如说特朗普的话只是吓唬小孩,他没法肆意妄为而是被架空……我们也能预料到过去八年来我们推进的每一个进步政策都有可能被驳回。再见,医保!再见,我们温和的刑事司法改革!再见,我们温和的对企业不当行为的限制法案!现在它们都彻彻底底的完蛋了,再见吧!(不过,再提醒一次大家:没人知道会发生什么)

The worst case scenario is very, very bad. Trump could be our Hitler. They laughed at the Nazis in 1928, the man with the funny moustache and his gang of silly brown-shirted thugs. They weren’t laughing so much in 1933. Things could be the same when it comes to the man with the funny hair and the orange face. Hah… Hah… Hah… Oh shit. We know Donald Trump is a man without a conscience. Yet we have just handed him near absolute power (in part enabled by the joint Democratic/Republican expansion of executive branch authority over the years). For all we know, there could be death camps on the horizon.

最惨的情况可能非常非常非常的惨。特朗普没准会成为下一个希特勒。1928年的时候,人们还在取笑希特勒的搞笑小胡子,取笑他那帮穿着棕色衬衣的暴徒们。1933年的时候,笑声戛然而止。历史可能会惊人的一致:一个有着搞笑发型和橙子脸的男人。哈哈哈,这就很操蛋了。我们知道特朗普这人没什么良心,可我们最后让他拿到了近乎绝对的权力。(部分来自年复一年国会对行政权范畴的拓展。)我们现在知道,集中营没准已经远在天边,近在眼前了。

For the sake of our sanity, it’s necessary to assume that this isn’t true. We must act as if we are not all about to die, as if the sky will not fall. (And who knows? It might not.) If we become resigned, if we start to feel doomed and hopeless, we are liable to produce a highly dangerous self-fulfilling prophecy. This has to be a moment of action rather than despair.

不过冷静想想这肯定不会成真的。我们必须相信我们肯定不会被搞死,天也肯定塌不下来。(哎,这个谁说的准呢?)如果我们就此开始放弃不干,如果我们就此开始失望透顶,我们就会自己亲手实现自己的末日预言。所以,我们需要化悲愤为力量,行动起来。

Progressives are going to have to fight for their values. They are going to have to fight hard. But they are also going to have to fight differently. The left will be doomed if it does not seriously rethink its practices. We’ve just lost every branch of government, and watched the presidency be given to a misogynistic sociopathic fraudster. Clearly we have gone wrong somewhere.

进步主义者们还将为他们追求的价值奋斗。他们必须比以往更加努力,但也需要有不同于以往的的努力。左派们如果不认真反省自身的行为的话,就会注定失败。我们输掉了三权的每一支,坐视总统权力被授予一个歧视女性的反社会的诈骗犯。我们所面对的困境不言而喻。

The most fundamental part of a new plan is this: do not do the same damn thing all over again and expect different results. We need a new kind of left politics. We need something that has what Obama had: inspiration, hope. It was joked that Hillary Clinton’s campaign slogan was “No you can’t.” That’s no good. Trump inspires people. He may inspire people by appealing to their nastiest, most inhuman and unneighborly instincts. But he inspires them. We have to have an agenda that gets people excited. It can’t be like trying to make people eat their vegetables. “You’ll vote for me and you’ll like it, because you have no alternative” is not an effective way to get votes.

对未来的计划最基本的一点是:不要期望重复曾经做过的事却得到不同的结果。我们需要新的左派政策。我们需要一些奥巴马所具有的斗志和希望。和奥巴马的口号(Yes,we can)对比,有人嘲笑希拉里的竞选口号是“No you can’t”。这真糟糕,要知道,特朗普很能鼓舞人心。也许他真的是唤醒了那些人心底最下流可耻的本能,可归根到底他真的能够鼓舞这些人。我们也需要一些能让人兴奋起来的宣传了——至少不能像是逼人们吃素似的。“你必须投我,你会喜欢我的,因为你没得选”这种类型可不是有效的拉票方式。

Progressives need to understand how people who are different from them think. No more writing them off as racist and deplorable. Even if they are, what good does that do? You need to understand racists not so you can sympathize with them, but so you can figure out what shapes people’s beliefs, and help them reach different beliefs. People on the left must reach out to people on the right. They must make their case. They must go into red states. They must take counter-arguments seriously and respond to them. It is not sufficient to have John Oliver eviscerate Trump on television and call him Drumpf. It is not sufficient to have Lena Dunham dance around in a pantsuit. It is not sufficient to line up a bunch of Hollywood celebrities to tell people how to vote. When someone asks “What kind of world does the left want to build?” we need to have a vision. When someone asks “Why should I vote for you?” the answer cannot be “Because I am not Trump.” After all, people like Trump.

进步者们要明白人们为什么与他们所想的不同。不要再批判这些人为无可救药的种族主义者。就算他们是,你这样做有什么好处呢?你需要理解种族主义者,当然并不是为了同情他们,而是为了搞清这些人到底笃信什么,然后再把他们拉到另一边来。左派的人一定要试着和右派的人交流。他们需要更多接触。他们需要去那些深红州去。他们需要严肃对待右派的观点并进行针对性的反驳。光靠John Oliver(talk show主持人)在电视节目上取笑特朗普远远不够;光靠Lena Dunham(女演员,女权运动者)穿工装裤跳舞远远不够;光靠发动一票好莱坞明星去教唆人们投票也远远不够。当人们问起,左派想要建立怎样的世界,我们要有一个答案;当人们问起,“我们为什么要投你”,我们的答案不能是“因为我不是特朗普”——毕竟,很多人还喜欢特朗普呢。

The Clinton campaign was a disaster. Let’s never do anything like it again. Let’s never again have a campaign in which people were constantly having to defend the indefensible. Let’s never again run on “experience” rather than values. Let’s never again treat everything as fine when it clearly isn’t. (Let’s also never again underestimate Donald Trump. The man is wily. He may have never read a book in his adult life. But he knows how to win an election. Calling him stupid, or treating him as stupid, misses the point. For a “stupid” man, he sure showed the elites.)

希拉里的竞选真的是场灾难,我们再也不要重蹈覆辙了。我们不要再搞这种人们疲于守护完全守不住的阵地的竞选;也不要再依赖于经验而非价值观;我们也别再掩耳盗铃,自满于现状;也不要再低估特朗普,这个男人真的相当狡诈。也许他自成年后真的一本书都不看,但他知道如何赢得一场大选。称他愚蠢,当他愚蠢,都大错特错。这样一个“愚蠢”的人,可结结实实给精英们上了一课。

Overnight, the world has changed. We may have thought history had ended, that nothing too terribly unexpected would ever shake us up again. But history never ends. The future could hold anything. It may hold catastrophe. But there is no time to think about that. What is needed now is a plan. In the immortal words of Joe Hill:

一夜过后,天翻地覆。我们也许以为历史将就此终结,再没有什么比这更骇人听闻的事情会震撼到我们。但历史的车轮永远不会停下——在未来一切皆有可能,可能是灾难,可是,时不我待,空想也无用。我们现在需要的,是一个计划。借用不朽的Joe Hill的话:

Don’t mourn, organize!

别灰心,行动起来!

编辑于 2016-11-13