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2006-07-09 13:14

  The walls of Ted Turner's international headquarters, 14 floors above downtown Atlanta,are lined with Oscar statuettes.If you try to pick one up,for example,the actual best-production award for Casablanca,you will discover that they are all firmly bolted to their glass display shelves,and Turner's aides will break their frowns to laugh at you.


  Turner is the 63-year-old multibillionaire founder of CNN,former champion sailor,Rhett Butler lookalike and record-breaking philanthropist.

  Turner has just emerged from the worst two years of his life —— years that he has said left him feeling“suicidal”。In spring 2000,he was suddenly sidelined from the broadcasting company he had built from scratch.Then his wife of eight years,the actress Jane Fonda,came home one night and informed him that she was now a born-again Christian;they divorced last year.Two of his grandchildren developed a rare genetic disorder,and one died.Turner's friends said he was inconsolable.Then,just when he felt it could get no worse,he brought the wrath of America upon himself by a speech in Rhode Island saying that the September 11 hijackers had been“brave”。


  特纳刚刚从一生中最糟糕的两年走出来。他说这两年让他想自杀。2000 年的春天,他突然在这个自己白手起家创立的广播公司里靠边站了。随后,与他共同生活了8年的妻子、演员简·方达一天晚上回到家,告诉他自己如今是已转信新教的基督徒。他们于去年分手。他的两个孙儿得了一种罕见的遗传疾病,其中一个已经离开人世。特纳的朋友说,他伤心至极。然后,就在特纳觉得情况不会变得更糟时,他又让自己成了愤怒的美国人的众矢之的。他在罗德岛一次演讲中说,“9·11”事件中的劫机者很勇敢。

  Then he threw himself into his charity work.Turner's UN Foundation,the biggest of his three charities,recently spent $22.2 in one month combating intestinal parasites in Vietnamese children,reducing China's greenhouse-gas emissions and helping women from Burkina Faso start businesses selling nut butter.


  Nigel Pritchard,CNN's head of international public relations,who is sitting beside me,has prepared a memo outlining some things his boss might like to consider not saying.It politely suggests that he might steer clear of talking about AOL Time Warner,and,specifically,he might like to avoid reference to that Rhode Island speech.Turner is notorious for doing as he pleases.Early in his career,he made a pitch wearing no clothes to advertising executives;later,he went to Cuba to get Fidel Castro to tape a promotional slot for CNN.

  He has various worldsaving projects:from preventing the extinction of the Chiricahua leopard frog in the wilds of New Mexico to founding an influential nuclear non-proliferation institute.Turner really does seem to see himself as locked in a personal battle against apocalypse.He doesn't just give money:his staff are sometimes taken aback to see him skulking in the streets nearby,picking up litter.

  坐在我身边的CNN 国际公共关系负责人奈杰尔·普里查德准备了一份备忘录,提醒自己的老板最好留意不要涉及的一些事情,该备忘录委婉地提醒老板避免谈及美国在线-时代华纳公司,特别是不要提及罗德岛的那次演讲。特纳的我行我素是出了名的。在事业的早期,他曾经赤身裸体作宣传。后来,他又跑到古巴,让菲德尔·卡斯特罗为CNN 录制一档宣传节目。


  When Turner gave his first billion to the UN,he dropped 67 laces on the Forbes 500 rich list,out of the top 10 for ever.(His fortune now stands at$ 3.8 bn.)

  It isn't hard to see how Turner's childhood might have instilled this sense of permanent crisis,of desperate insecurity,behind the frenzied activity that is his trademark.His father,from whom he inherited an advertising business that he turned into CNN,was prone to fits of rage,and beat him with a coathanger;he committed suicide when Turner was24.Even before that,his younger sister had died from an immune disease when she was 12,and Ted was sent to a boarding school he hated.His father,he has said,not without admiration,believed that instilling insecurity in his son would help him to achieve.All in all,Turner seems to have been a well-qualified candidate for total psychic collapse.“But when everything goes wrong,”he says today,“you can either give up or you can try to fight.I tried to fight.”


  从特纳的早年经历可以看出,在他那些标志性的狂热行为背后,隐藏着的是一种永久的危机感和极度的不安全感。特纳的父亲—— 他后来从父亲那儿继承了一个广告公司即CNN的前身——时不时地大发脾气,然后用衣架打他。父亲在特纳24岁时自杀了。在那之前,他的妹妹在12岁时死于一种免疫系统疾病。父亲把特纳送到一所他不喜欢的寄宿学校。特纳不无钦佩地说,他的父亲认为,让儿子有不安全感有助其成功。从各方面说,特纳都似乎成了一个十分典型的精神全面崩溃的病例?quot;当一切都出了问题时,你要么放弃,要么努力抗争。我努力抗争。“特纳说。

  After a brief spell in the armed forces,he ploughed his energies into his father's billboard business,purchasing a radio station and using empty billboards to advertise it.His radio empire grew,and expanded to local television.By 1980,he was launching CNN,although it was not until the Gulf war that the often-derided channel came into its own.He created the Cartoon Network,and bought hundreds of old MGM films,which he recycled on another lucrative channel,Turner Classic Movies.His firm eventually merged with Time Warner.But then came AOL,and Gerald Levin,the chief executive of the new giant,decided he didn't need Turner —— or perhaps couldn't tolerate his unpredictability.Levin is gone now,and his replacement,Richard Parsons,has brought Turner back into the fold in a new vice-chairman position.The line from corporate communications is that Turner is back in the saddle.But this is not how Turner sees it.

  在军队中短暂地呆了一段时间后,特纳把精力投入到父亲的广告牌业务中。他购买了一家广播电台,然后利用空闲的广告牌为电台做宣传。特纳的广播王国发展壮大,后来扩展到当地的电视业。到1980 年,特纳创办CNN,不过这个经常受到嘲笑的频道在海湾战争后才进入全盛时期。特纳创立了动画片频道,还购买了米高梅影片公司的数百部旧影片,在另一个赢利的频道——特纳经典影片回顾重复播放。他的公司最终与时代华纳公司合并。但是随后美国在线又加入了,而这个新巨头的总裁杰拉尔德·莱文认为自己不需要特纳——也可能是他无法容忍特纳的变幻莫测。如今莱文已经离开了,接替他的理查德·帕森斯把特纳接了回来,安置在一个副董事长的新位置上。公司传达的消息是,特纳重新掌权。但是特纳却不这么看。

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