明星资讯腾讯娱乐2019年07月19日 14:43:48
Students at the University of Washington were offered a new course last month, entitled Calling Bullshit In the Age of Big Data. For the past couple of decades, week in and week out, I have been calling bullshit for this publication, and so was delighted to hear my favourite pastime had made it into academia.上个月,华盛顿大学(University of Washington)开了一门新课,名为《在大数据时代拆穿胡扯》(Calling Bullshit In the Age of Big Data)。过去三十多年,我每周都在这个专栏里拆穿胡扯,因此听说这种我最喜欢的消遣打入了学术界,我很高兴。While this course is limited to spotting bullshit in numbers, there is an equal need for one spotting it in words, especially words used in business. What follows is an outline for a rival course aimed to fill that gap.尽管这门课程仅限于发现数字上的胡扯,但发现用词(特别是商界的用词)上的胡扯也同样必要。以下是我为一门旨在填补这一空白的与之竞争的课程拟出的概要。It starts with a definition: bullshit means nonsense, usually of a puffed-up variety that pretends to be something it is not. Sharp eyes will spot at once the difficulty in applying this to corporate life — almost everything fits the description. Before I have even got inside my office I have tripped over a yellow plastic sign saying “Caution Wet Floor” — bullshit because usually the floor is not wet, and if it were, the picture of someone falling spectacularly is wildly overdoing it.先从定义开始:胡扯意味着废话,通常夸大其词、装模作样。目光敏锐者会立刻发现,这一定义很难应用于企业生活——几乎所有事都符合这一描述。还没走进办公室,我就发现了一块黄色的塑料牌,上面写着“小心地面湿滑”(Caution Wet Floor)——这是胡扯,因为地面通常并不湿滑,即使地面确实湿滑,但牌子上画的一个人四仰八叉地摔倒在地的样子也太夸张了。The first rule about calling corporate bullshit is not to do it too assiduously or you will go insane. I have learnt to ignore 95 per cent of it, and of the remainder ask myself two questions: what is the quality? And: how damaging is it?在企业里拆穿胡扯的第一原则是,别太认真,否则你会疯掉。我已经学会忽略95%的胡扯,对于剩余的那些,我会问自己两个问题:品质如何?以及破坏性有多大?I have gone through dozens of examples of bullshit that have come my way in the past couple of days and picked three that are worth calling. The first is a branding document produced for a new Pepsi logo in 2008, and resuscitated last week on Twitter. With diagrams comparing the Earth’s magnetic fields to “Pepsi energy fields” and text that s: “The Pepsi DNA finds its origin in the dynamic of perimeter oscillations” — it is grade A, unadulterated BS. But on the second question — whether it was damaging — the answer is no. Pepsi changed its logo and carried on selling its brown sugar-water around the world willy-nilly.过去几天,我见识了数十个胡扯的例子,并挑出了3个值得拆穿的。第一个是2008年为百事(Pepsi)新标志所做的品牌文案,最近在Twitter上重新流传开来。文案中用示意图把地球磁场与“百事能量场”相比,配以文字:“百事在边缘震荡的动力学中找到了其DNA的起源(The Pepsi DNA finds its origin in the dynamic of perimeter oscillations)”——这是A级,纯粹的胡扯。但是在第二个问题上——是否具有破坏性——是否定的。百事改了标志,继续随心所欲地在全世界卖它的棕色甜饮料。Even so, bullshit like this deserves to be called both for its exceptional quality, and because doing so might encourage its perpetrators to have a dark night of the soul in which they wonder what on earth they are up to.即便如此,这样的胡扯也值得拆穿,因为它“令人叫绝”的品质,也因为拆穿它可能会促使它的炮制者在深夜拷问灵魂,反思自己到底要干嘛。Exhibit two is a document from Deliveroo on its preferred language for describing the poor sods who cycle round with other people’s smelly takeaways on their backs. The memo bans “employees”, replacing it with “independent suppliers”, and forbids “pay” and “hiring” preferring “invoices” and “onboarding” instead.第二个例子是Deliveroo的一份文件,它在文件中列出了自己倾向于用哪些字眼来形容那些骑着车、背着气味浓重的外卖包到处送外卖的可怜人。这份文件禁止使用“雇员”一词,代之以“独立供应商”;禁止使用“薪水”和“雇佣”这两个词,而倾向于用“发票”和“登船”替代。On the quality measure this bullshit is tame. “Independent supplier” and “invoice” are innocuous, and “onboarding”, though regrettable as a gerund, especially with no boat in sight, is so common there is little point in protesting. But on the measure of harm, Deliveroo’s memo is wicked. It knows that if people used the ordinary words “employee” and “hire”, they might make the mistake of thinking they were due ordinary things like holidays and sick pay — which Deliveroo doggedly denies them.就品质而言,这条胡扯平淡无奇。“独立供应商”和“发票”无伤大雅;至于“登船”,尽管这个词令人遗憾地是个动名词(尤其是在语境跟船毫无关系的情况下),但这个词那么普通,抗议它根本没有什么意义。但就破坏性而言,Deliveroo的文件是不道德的。它知道如果人们使用了“雇员”和“雇佣”这类普通词汇,他们可能会错以为自己有权享有假期和病假这些普通的福利——这是Deliveroo坚决否认的。The third example comes from Jim Norton, who has the delightfully bullshitty title of chief business officer, president of revenue at Condé Nast. Last week he outlined his new strategy to all staff in a memo that began “Team” and proceeded with a stream of corporate nonsense about playbooks and journeys and wide arrays of differentiated solutions. It glossed over sackings as “hard personnel decisions”, only to declare the new corporate plan: “Condé Nast One”.第3个例子来自吉姆?诺顿(Jim Norton),他在康泰纳仕出版集团(Condé Nast)的头衔荒谬到令人发笑——首席业务官、营收总裁。不久前,他在发给全体员工的备忘录中概述了他的新策略,备忘录中以“团队”开头,继而展开了一连串有关剧本和旅程的企业废话以及大量差异化解决方案。它把解雇包装成了“艰难的人事决策”,只为了宣布新的企业计划:“康泰纳仕同舟共济”(Condé Nast One)。For companies to claim themselves “one” is standard bullshit — it is a cliché and a lie, given the inevitable number of vested interests in any organisation. If Mr Norton were in the motor trade or banking, I might let this pass. Yet Condé Nast publishes Vanity Fair and The New Yorker, where standards of editing are so exacting that one of the latter’s editors has written a whole book based on the correct placement of a comma.对于企业来说,自称“同舟”是标准的胡扯——鉴于任何组织中都不可避免地存在一些既得利益,这么说既老套、也是谎言。如果诺顿在汽车业或业,我可能放他一马。但康泰纳仕是《名利场》(Vanity Fair)和《纽约客》(The New Yorker)的出版商,其编辑标准如此严苛,以至于《纽约客》的一名编辑就插入逗号的正确位置写了整整一本书。Mr Norton may well bang on about the “heritage of quality journalism”, but had he asked his staff to edit his battle cry: “We will all transition this business together”, they would surely have told him transition was ugly as a verb, but as a transitive one was a monster. He did not ask; what his staff did instead was the memo, call it, and forward it to me.诺顿完全可以继续大谈“高质量新闻的传统”,但要是他在备忘录发出前让员工编辑了一下他的战斗口号——“我们所有人将一起转型这家企业”——的话,他们必然会告诉他,把转型用作动词就够糟糕了,用作及物动词简直就是灾难。可惜他没有问;于是他的员工阅读了这篇备忘录,心里暗骂胡扯,然后转发给了我。 /201704/505393


  A Louisiana doctor who has brought a series of whistleblower lawsuits against pharmaceuticals companies is in line for a windfall from Pfizer that would take his total payout from fraud settlements close to 0m.对制药公司提起一连串举报人诉讼的一名路易斯安那州医生将从辉瑞(Pfizer)得到丰厚付款,这将使他从欺诈和解得到的总付款接近1亿美元。William LaCorte was one of two whistleblowers whose lawsuits resulted in Pfizer yesterday agreeing to pay the US justice department 4.6m to settle allegations that its Wyeth subsidiary overcharged government Medicaid programmes for a heartburn drug.威廉拉科尔特(William LaCorte)是两名举报人之一,他们提起的诉讼导致辉瑞昨日同意向美国司法部付7.846亿美元,以了结相关指控;此前辉瑞的子公司惠氏(Wyeth)被指对一种胃灼热药物向美国政府的Medicaid医疗补助计划收费过高。The 67-year-old practising medic is likely to receive about m of the settlement under US laws aimed at encouraging whistleblowing — adding to his m from similar lawsuits.根据旨在鼓励举报的美国法律,这位67岁的执业医生很可能从和解款项中分得大约5900万美元,此前他已从类似诉讼中获得3800万美元。The latest payout will reinforce his status as one of America’s most prolific serial whistleblowers and fuel debate over a system that entitles people to receive up to 30 per cent of federal settlements resulting from cases they helped instigate.最新付款将夯实他作为美国最高产连环举报者之一的地位,并给围绕这一制度的辩论提供素材——按照这一制度,人们有资格从他们帮助发起的案件中分得联邦和解款项的至多30%。Dr LaCorte sued Wyeth in 2008 under the US False Claims Act, which allows people to file lawsuits on behalf of the government against companies or individuals for defrauding taxpayers.拉科尔特医生在2008年根据美国《虚假申报法》(False Claims Act)起诉惠氏;该法允许人们代表政府对欺诈纳税人的公司或个人提起诉讼。Wyeth was accused of illegally denying Medicaid, the public-funded health insurance scheme for low-income patients, hundreds of millions of dollars in rebates that were available to non-government customers for its Protonix heartburn drug.Medicaid是公共资助的医疗保险计划,面向低收入患者。对于其胃灼热药物Protonix,惠氏被指向非政府客户提供返点,却未向Medicaid提供返点,涉案金额达数亿美元。Dr LaCorte told the Financial Times that, while whistleblowers could theoretically receive up to 30 per cent of settlements, a more typical payout was 15 per cent. In the Wyeth case, this would be shared with another whistleblower, Lauren Kieff, a former sales representative for AstraZeneca, a rival of Pfizer’s.拉克特医生告诉英国《金融时报》,尽管举报人理论上可以分得和解款项的最多30%,但他们通常情况下分得的份额为15%。在惠氏的案子,这笔钱将与另一名举报人——劳伦·基夫(Lauren Kieff)——分享,后者曾是辉瑞竞争对手阿斯利康(AstraZeneca)的销售代表。Pfizer said it was pleased to have “reached an agreement in principle” to settle the Protonix dispute.辉瑞表示,很高兴“达成原则协议”,了结围绕Protonix的纠纷。 /201602/427033。

  Time seems to pass faster or slower depending on the language you speak, new research has revealed, because of the way your native tongue speaks about time.新的研究表明,时间流逝的快慢取决于你掌握的语言,取决于你的母语描述时间的方式。A team from Stellenbosch University in South Africa and the University of Lancaster in the UK say their work also shows how bilingualism encourages the brain to think in new ways.一个由南非斯泰伦斯大学和英国兰开斯特大学组成的研究团队称,他们的研究也揭示了双语如何使大脑用新的方式思考。In one experiment, a computer animation of a slowly growing line was shown to 40 Spanish speakers and 40 Swedish speakers. All the animations lasted 3 seconds, but the line didn#39;t always grow to the same length.在一项实验中,研究者向40名西班牙语母语者和40名瑞典语母语者展示了一条逐渐变长的线的电脑动画。所有动画都持续3秒钟,但每个动画中线的长度不一。The researchers expected that because Swedes talk about time in terms of distance, they would find it harder to accurately estimate how much time had passed—and they were right.研究者预测,由于瑞典人习惯用物理距离来描述时间,所以他们会更难估计过了多长时间,实验明研究者的预测是对的。Meanwhile the Spanish speakers, who refer to time in terms of volume (as in a ;small; break rather than a ;short; break), were much better at realising that the same 3 seconds had elapsed, no matter how far the line grew.同时,西班牙母语者是以体积来描述时间(休息时间“小”而非“短”),所以不管动画中的线多长,他们都能较准确地感知流逝的时间大概为3秒。;The Swedish speakers tend to think that the line that grows longer in distance, takes longer,; one of the researchers, linguist Emanuel Bylund from Stellenbosch University explained.来自南非斯泰伦斯大学的研究者,语言学家伊曼纽尔?拜兰德解释说,“瑞典语母语者认为线变得越长,所需时间就越多。”;Spanish speakers aren#39;t tricked by that. They seem to think that it doesn#39;t matter how much the line grows in distance, it still takes the same time for it to grow.;“西班牙母语者不会受到线长短的迷惑。他们认为不管线变得有多长,所需的时间都是一样的。”In another experiment, participants were shown animations of a jug slowly being filled up: the length of the animation was fixed, but the jug filled up by different amounts.另一项实验中,研究者向参与者展示灌水壶的电脑动画:动画的长度为定量,但水壶盛水量不同。Sure enough, this time it was the Spanish speakers who had more trouble estimating the passage of time.果然,这次是西班牙母语者估计时间时遇到了困难。Interestingly, when the spoken prompts in a particular language were taken away, the volunteers were much better at judging time, as if being asked out loud how much time had passed triggered something in the brain.有趣的是,撤走影响某一语种参与者估计时间的道具后,那些受参与者能更准确地估计时间,就好像被大声问到过了多久时间激发了大脑中的某种东西似的。To gain more insight into what was happening, 74 bilingual speakers of both Spanish and Swedish were also recruited, and shown similar animations.为了更深入地研究到底是怎么回事,研究者召募了74名西班牙语和瑞典语双语志愿者进行实验,向他们展示类似的动画。The end results were the same: when instructed in Swedish, the volunteers were more easily fooled by the line animations, and when instructed in Spanish, it was the jug animations that interfered with their perceptions of time.最后得到了相同的结果:用瑞典语发出指令时,志愿者们更易被线的动画骗到,用西班牙语发出指令时,水壶的动画就会扰乱他们对时间的感知。 /201705/509385

  The world’s largest seaplane rolled off a production line in China at the weekend, beefing up the country’s strategic reach to islands it claims in the South China Sea.世界上最大的水上飞机600上周末在中国总装下线,这让中国的战略触角可伸展至其在南中国海宣称拥有的岛屿。While not ruling out military uses, state news agency Xinhua said the amphibious aircraft, which is the size of Boeing 737, would be deployed to “fight forest fires and perform marine rescue missions”.在未排除军事用途的同时,官方通讯社新华社称,这架水陆两栖飞机具备执行“森林灭火、水上救援”任务的能力。600的尺寸与波音737 (Boeing 737)相当。State-owned Aviation Industry Corporation of China, which designed and produced the seaplane, had 17 orders so far, Xinhua added, noting that the aircraft would be “very useful in developing and exploiting marine resources”.新华社表示,设计制造600的中国航空工业集团公司(Aviation Industry Corporation of China)迄今已取得17架意向订单。新华社指出,600在海洋资源开发和勘探方面将会非常有用。The 600, which boasts four turboprop engines and a hulking body with a keel down the centre of the plane’s belly, could also be used for “environmental monitoring, resource detection and transportation,” Xinhua said .600拥有4台涡桨发动机和庞大的机身,机腹中心下面是船体。新华社表示,600也可用于环境监测、资源探测和运输。The article said the 600 has a range of 4,500km — a distance that comfortably covers much of the western Pacific Ocean from China’s coast, and as far as the northern shores of Australia.新华社的文章称,600最大航程达4500公里,可轻松地从中国海岸飞抵西太平洋许多地区,最远可达澳大利亚北部海岸。According to Chinese media reports, the aircraft is capable of carrying 12 tonnes of water for dousing forest fires, and could rescue up to 50 shipwreck victims at a time.据中国媒体报道,600能携带12吨水扑灭森林火灾,还能一次救护50名遭遇海难的人员。However, the 600 also adds to China’s military additional capabilities in the South China Sea, where Beijing is locked in an escalating war of words with neighbouring countries such as Vietnam and the Philippines — as well as the US — over its efforts to build islands in disputed waters.然而,600也让中国增强了在南中国海的军事能力。中国在南中国海争议水域的造岛行为,让其与越南、菲律宾等邻国以及美国陷入了逐步升级的口水战。Seaplanes last saw large-scale military use by the US against the Japanese during the second world war’s “island hopping” Pacific campaigns. However, they are little used by modern military forces.水上飞机上次大规模用于军事用途还是在二战期间,当时美国用它来在太平洋对日本发动“跳岛”战役。现代军事力量已很少使用水上飞机。The aircraft gives Beijing the capacity to connect to island bases in remote locations without available airfields.600让北京方面有能力将触角伸至遥远的、没有可用机场的岛屿基地。 /201607/456420Faced with a growing refuse problem in urban areas, China plans to move ahead with household trash sorting in 46 major cities by requiring all public institutes and relevant companies to separate hazardous waste, kitchen waste and recyclable materials by 2020.面对城市地区日益严峻的垃圾问题,我国计划在46座主要城市推进生活垃圾分类,要求所有公共机构和相关企业在2020年之前对有害垃圾、厨余垃圾、可回收物进行分类。By then, specific policies, laws and regulations will have been adopted that will push mandatory trash sorting forward, and the recycling rate will grow to at least 35 percent in these cities, Feng Liang, a senior at the National Development and Reform Commission said last Friday.国家发展和改革委员会一名名叫冯良的官员上周五表示,到2020年,将实施具体的政策法规以推进生活垃圾强制分类,这46座城市的垃圾回收利用率将至少达到35%。The targets are listed in a household trash sorting action plan jointly issued by the NDRC and the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development.这些目标被列在了一项有关生活垃圾分类的行动方案中,该方案是由国家发改委、住房和城乡建设部联合发布的。The plan covers 46 major cities, including Beijing, Tianjin, Shanghai and Chongqing, the capitals of all provincial regions, and some cities that were chosen as models, such as Handan, Hebei.该方案覆盖46座主要城市,包括北京、天津、上海、重庆和所有省会城市,以及一些被选中的示范城市,如河北邯郸。Detailed rules on mandatory household trash sorting in these cities will be released this year.这些城市的生活垃圾强制分类具体规定将于今年发布。The rules will be mandatory, however, only for public entities, such as governments and schools, and companies, such as restaurants and shopping malls. But residential communities are encouraged to follow suit.该规定将是强制性的,不过只针对如政府、学校等公共团体,以及像饭店和购物中心这样的企业,但是鼓励住宅区效仿。 /201704/503042

  China#39;s transition to a consumption-led economy is boosting the global tourism industry. The number of international tourists from China rose 53 percent in 2015 from the year before, according to the World Travel and Tourism Council, a London-based nonprofit that researches global tourism.中国经济向消费型转变,推动了全球的旅游业。总部设在伦敦的非营利组织世界旅游及旅行理事会说,2015年出国旅游的中国人比上一年增加了53%。Over the last five years, the number of Chinese travelers doubled to 120 million people; one in ten international travelers is now from China.过去5年里,中国旅游人数翻番,增至1亿2000万,每10名国际游客中就有一人来自中国。The number of tourists into China also grew, but slightly, at just 2.2 percent in 2015. Tourism supported 65 million jobs in China, and made up 7.9 percent of the country’s gross domestic product. Nearly 57 million foreign travelers came to China that year, spending more than billion.去中国旅游的外国人也有所增加,但幅度很小,2015年仅增加了2.2%。在中国,旅游业提供了6500万个就业机会,占中国国内生产总值的7.9%。2015年,将近5700万外国人到中国旅游,他们在中国的消费超过570亿美元。But that figure is far less than the amount Chinese tourists are spending on their overseas trips. Last year, travelers from China spent 5 billion outside the country.但这一数字远远低于中国游客在外国的消费。去年,中国游客在外国消费达2150亿美元。 /201604/435541

  The maiden flight of the world#39;s longest aircraft has begun - after a previous attempt was abandoned at the last minute. 经历被迫临时取消预定的试飞计划之后,全球最大飞行器终于开始了它的首飞秀。The Airlander 10 - which is part plane and part airship - took off from Cardington Airfield in Bedfordshire. “天空登陆者10号”于英国贝德福德郡的卡丁顿机场起飞,它是飞机和飞艇的综合体。Its original test flight was postponed, but it finally left the ground at 19:40 BST. |它原先的试飞计划被推迟,最终它于英国时间19:40分离开地面。The £25m aircraft measures 302ft (92m) long and is about 50ft (15m) longer than the biggest passenger jets. 这架飞行器耗资2500万英镑,长302英尺(92米),大约比全世界最大的客机还长50英尺(15米)。The airship is not allowed to fly at night during the test stage. 在测试阶段,这架飞行器是不能在夜间飞行的。Christened the Martha Gwyn, the aircraft was first developed for the US government as a surveillance aircraft but the project was shelved amid defence cutbacks. 最初该飞行器以玛莎#8226;格温为名,作为侦察机效力于美国军方,但后来美国军费缩减,放弃了这个项目。British firm Hybrid Air Vehicles (HAV) launched a campaign to return the Airlander 10 to the skies in May 2015. 2015年5月,英国混合航空交通公司启动了重新使用“天空登陆者10号”的计划。The huge aircraft will be able to stay airborne for around five days during manned flights. 这架巨型飞行器能在空中载人飞行5天左右。HAV claims it could be used for a variety of functions such as surveillance, communications, delivering aid and even passenger travel. 混合航空交通公司表示,它可发挥多样功能,如监视、通信、运送救援物资、运送旅客等。 /201608/461908



  A library in Alabama has reportedly warned its customers that it plans to enforce strict new borrowing rules that include the possibility of jail time for anyone who fails to return a book on time.据报道,阿拉巴马州的一个图书馆提醒读者们,该图书馆计划实行严苛的新借阅规定,其中包括任何没有按时归还书本的读者将可能被判刑。In an effort to recoup about 0,000 worth of overdue books, the Athens-Limestone public library will be enforcing a new policy that includes fines of 0, a city jail term of 30 days or possibly both, according to the News Courier.据News Courier报道,阿森斯#8226;莱姆斯通公立图书馆将对逾期未还者实行新措施,包括罚款100美元、30天的监禁或两者兼罚,其目的在于弥补之前逾期图书所带来的损失,价值达到20万美元。Library director Paula Laurita said the harsh new rules were necessary because offenders were effectively stealing from the library and taxpayers.图书馆馆长波拉#8226;劳里塔认为严厉的新政十分有必要,因为这些违法者偷了图书馆的书本也是偷了纳税人的钱。Sometimes we hear, ‘I lent my library card to my cousin,’ Laurita said. 劳里塔说:有时候我们会听到‘我把图书馆借给我表弟了’。I just want to ask, ‘Would you lend your cousin your credit card? If they go and get 0 worth of clothing and you’re responsible for the bill, would you do that?’那我就想问问了,‘你会把你的信用卡借给你表弟么?’如果他们拿着你的卡去买了700美元的衣而你要付账单,你还会借么?Library customers can end up owing large sums to the library because they are able to take out up to 25 books at a time, which could have a retail value of each.图书馆读者一次最多可以借25本书,每本可能价值25美元,因此他们最后可能会欠图书馆一大笔帐。Anyone with overdue books will have the chance to return them before the authorities are notified.任何有书逾期未还者都还有机会在权威机构介入前将书还回图书馆。The library will first notify borrowers with overdue books via text or email. 图书馆首先会用短信或邮件通知借书逾期未还者。If that is ignored, a certified letter will be sent, warning they have 10 days to hand in their books and pay any fines owed.如果没有收到回复,图书馆会发一份挂号信警告他们,他们将有十天的时间还书并交罚款。If that letter is not acted on, a court summons will be issued, WAAY 31 reported. 据WAAY 31报道,如果这封信也没起作用,那么就会发出法院传票。Ignoring the court summons could result in another fine and jail time.对法院传票置之不理则会导致另外的罚款和监禁。Laurita said children would not be targeted by the policy.劳里塔说孩子不在政策针对范围内。 /201609/465607

  A few things in Yaroslav’s apartment still bear witness to the life he had: the well-fed orange cat, his daughter’s high chair in the kitchen and the oak laminate flooring he laid a year ago. 在雅罗斯拉夫(Yaroslav)的公寓里,还有几样东西能够明他曾经拥有过的生活:一只喂养得很好的橙色猫咪、厨房里他女儿用过的高脚椅,以及他一年前铺装的橡木复合地板。 Everything else is gone. When the 35-year-old engineer lost his job at a Lada dealership in Togliatti last summer, money ran out quickly. 其他一切都消失了。这名35岁的工程师去年夏天失去了他在陶里亚蒂(Togliatti)一家拉达(Lada)经销店的工作后,钱很快就用光了。 He sold the games console, then the TV. After his wife — pregnant with twins — left him in December, taking their two-year-old with her, he even got rid of the bed. “What’s left is the stuff the pawnshop won’t take,” he says, banging another bottle of cheap white wine on the windowsill. Peeling at shreds of wallpaper left from his unfinished renovation, he adds: “It feels like the 1990s again.” 雅罗斯拉夫卖掉了游戏主机,然后是电视机。怀着一对双胞胎的妻子带着他们两岁的女儿在12月离开他之后,他甚至把床也脱手了。“剩下的是当铺不要的东西,”他一边说一边用一瓶廉价的白酒敲打着窗台。墙壁的翻新没有完成,他把剩下的破碎的墙纸撕下来,补充道:“感觉又回到了上世纪90年代。” In the grip of its longest recession in 20 years, Russians seem resigned to the loss of the growth and prosperity they had come to see as the hallmark of President Vladimir Putin’s rule. Although few are seeing their lives unravel as completely as Yaroslav, many fear a return of an era they had hoped to have left behind: the decade of recession, economic shocks and poverty that followed the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. 深陷20年来最漫长经济衰退的俄罗斯人似乎只好接受一个现实:他们曾经视为弗拉基米尔#8226;普京(Vladimir Putin)总统掌权标志的增长和繁荣正在消失。尽管像雅罗斯拉夫这样生活彻底分崩离析的人很少,但很多人担心他们曾经希望已经远离的一个时代正在卷土重来:1991年苏联解体后持续10年的衰退、经济冲击和贫困。 “Russians have come to highly appreciate the social wellbeing achieved since 2000, and therefore it will be extremely painful to let that go. Now that we’ve had two years of crisis there’s no prospect of growth, people [are] reminded of the 1990s,” says Tatyana Maleva, director of the Institute of Social Analysis and Forecasting at the Russian Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Ranepa for short. “俄罗斯人已变得非常珍视2000年以来实现的社会福利,因此要放弃它是极其痛苦的。在经历了2年危机之后的今天,我们仍看不到增长的前景,这让人们想起了上世纪90年代,”俄罗斯总统国民经济和公共管理学院(RANEPA)社会分析和预测研究所(Institute of Social Analysis and Forecasting)所长塔季扬娜#8226;马列娃(Tatyana Maleva)说。 “We are forced to acknowledge that the social consequences of this crisis will be like the 1990s because we are looking at an extended, lingering, grinding stagnation,” she says. “我们不得不承认,这场危机的社会后果会和上世纪90年代一样,因为我们看到了漫长、挥之不去和没完没了的停滞,”她说。 Striking a bargain 与人民达成“交易” Economic growth had slowed sharply even before nosediving crude oil prices and the impact of western sanctions, imposed over its role in the war in Ukraine, hit Russia in 2014. Even if the recession ends next year, growth is unlikely to be much more than flat after years of shrinking investment and falling household incomes. 即使在2014年原油价格开始暴跌、同时西方针对俄罗斯在乌克兰战争中的角色而制裁俄罗斯之前,俄罗斯的经济增速就已经大幅放缓。即使明年俄罗斯的衰退结束,在多年的投资缩水和家庭收入下降后,俄罗斯的经济也不太可能显著增长。 Most Russians believe that the worst of the economic hardship is still to come, according to the Russian Public Opinion Research Centre (VCIOM), a pollster frequently used by the Kremlin, in a sign that despite Mr Putin’s stubbornly high popularity ratings, the trust in his ability to deliver a better future is gone. 根据克里姆林宫经常使用的民调机构俄罗斯社会舆论民调中心(VCIOM)的调查,大多数俄罗斯人相信,经济困境最艰难的阶段尚未到来。这个迹象表明,尽管普京的民意持率居高不下,但俄罗斯人对他有能力带来更美好未来的信任已经不复存在。 Mr Putin first became president on New Year’s Eve 1999, the moment a steep and extended climb in oil prices gathered pace. It would continue for 14 years with only a brief interruption during the global crisis of 2008-09. 普京初次当上总统是在1999年新年前夕,适逢油价开启一段大幅且持续的攀升。除了在2008-09年全球金融危机期间短暂中断以外,这个过程持续了14年。 In what many observers call Mr Putin’s bargain with the Russian people, the country put up with growing restrictions on political freedoms gained after the collapse of the Soviet Union in exchange for economic wellbeing and stability. Growth during the Putin era lifted large parts of society out of poverty, helped Russians become healthier and live longer, and created a taste for the spoils of middle-class life such as overseas travel. 用很多观察家的话来说,普京和俄罗斯民众达成了一笔“交易”:全国人民忍受苏联解体后获得的政治自由逐渐受到限制,以换取经济福祉和稳定。普京时代的增长让俄罗斯社会中的许多人群摆脱了贫困,帮助俄罗斯人变得更健康,寿命更长,还让俄罗斯人产生了对中产阶级享受的嗜好,比如境外旅游。 By 2014, Russia’s per capita gross domestic product, based on purchasing power parity, had more than doubled compared with 2000. Child mortality had halved, life expectancy increased by 12 per cent and the proportion of young people enrolled in tertiary education soared from half to three-quarters. 到2014年,按购买力平价(PPP)计算,俄罗斯人均国内生产总值(GDP)相比2000年增加了一倍以上。儿童死亡率减半,国民预期寿命提高了12%,接受高等教育的年轻人的比例从一半激增至四分之三。 So far, only a small part of these social gains, widely seen by Russian society as Mr Putin’s main achievements, has been undone. “Indicators such as income levels and poverty levels [suggest] we have been thrown back by six years — to where we were at the peak of the last economic crisis in 2009,” says Ms Maleva. “Wages dropped by 10 per cent last year rather than by three times, as they did in the 1990s.” 俄罗斯社会广泛将这些社会收益视为普京的主要成就。迄今这些福利中只有一小部分消失了。“收入水平和贫困水平等指标(表明)我们倒退了6年,回到了2009年上一场经济危机的顶峰时期,”马列娃表示,“去年薪资水平下跌了10%,而上世纪90年代薪资下降到了那之前的三分之一,” Many people, however, feel that they are taking a much larger step back: a perception fuelled by the drawn-out nature of the current crisis. Although 2015 was the first full year of economic contraction, incomes started falling the year before and continue to do so. In February, real household income decreased by 7 per cent compared with the same month a year earlier, the fastest drop since December 2014. 然而,许多人感觉他们倒退的步子比这大得多:当前这场旷日持久的危机加强了这种认知。尽管2015年是俄罗斯首次出现全年经济收缩,但人们的收入在之前一年就开始下滑,并且至今仍在下滑。今年2月,俄罗斯家庭实际收入比去年同期下降7%,是自2014年12月以来最大的同比跌幅。 “The increase in incomes had given people the option to get better healthcare, better education, some foreign travel, on their own expenditure,” says Birgit Hansl, the World Bank’s lead economist for Russia. “This allowance for some extras was the real benefit of transformation but this extended slide in incomes increases people’s reliance on legacy infrastructure again, and they realise how bad this legacy infrastructure still is.” “收入增加曾经让人们可以选择自费获得更好的医疗务、更好的教育,还有一些国外旅行,”世界(World Bank)首席俄罗斯经济学家比吉特#8226;汉斯尔(Birgit Hansl)表示,“这种可以投入额外享受的‘津贴’是改革的真正效益,但是此轮收入长期下滑再次加大了人们对遗留基础设施的依赖,而他们意识到,这些遗留下来的基础设施仍然非常糟糕。” While Russians paid three-quarters of private health costs out of their own pockets in 2000, that proportion had risen to more than 90 per cent by 2014. 2000年,有四分之三的个人医疗费用是俄罗斯人自掏腰包买单的,而到2014年,这个比例上升到了90%以上。 “People had been avoiding public hospitals like the plague.” says Ms Hansl. “Now that they have to go back there to save money, they may feel like they’re going back to the 1990s.” “人们曾经像躲避瘟疫般躲避公立医院,”汉斯尔表示,“如今,为了省钱,他们不得不回到那里,他们可能感觉自己回到了上世纪90年代。” Many try not to. According to data collected by Russian newspaper R, 44 per cent of urban middle-class families spend as much on healthcare as they used to, a larger percentage than on any other item. Spending cuts on food, clothing and alcohol by far outstrip those on medicine. 很多人试图不这么做。根据俄罗斯报纸R收集的数据,44%的俄罗斯城市中产阶级家庭的医疗开销与过去大致相同,这一比例超过其他任何出。在食品、装和烈酒方面的出削减幅度远远超过药品。 To avoid state hospitals and still stay within their budgets, Muscovites have become savvy. “Patients have started avoiding expensive procedures such as arthroplasty [joint surgery],” says Muslim Muslimov, a doctor and owner of Clinic No 1, a midsize private clinic in Moscow. “They are also getting second opinions from other doctors more often. If in the past, five out of 10 patients who came for a consultation would get some kind of treatment afterwards, now it’s only two or three.” 为了既躲避公立医院又守住自己的预算,莫斯科人变得精明起来。“患者开始回避昂贵的手术,例如关节置换,”莫斯科中型私立诊所Clinic No 1老板、穆斯利姆#8226;穆斯利莫夫(Muslim Muslimov)医生表示,“他们还更多地向其他医生征求第二意见。过去,在10名来这里咨询的患者中,有5名会在咨询后接受某种治疗,如今只有2、3人这么做。” /201604/438555

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