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威廉·尤尔特·格莱斯顿 论内政和外交

2006-07-07 17:10

William Ewart Gladstone

ON DOMESTIC AND FOREIGN AFFAIRS

November 7,1879

  Today,gentlemen,as I know that many among you are interested in the land,and as I feel thatwhat is termed“agricultural distress” is at the pre-sent moment a topic too serious to be omitted fromour consideration,I shall say some words upon thesubject of that agricultural distress,and particu-larly,because in connection with it there havearisen in some quarters of the country propo-sals,which have received a countenance far beyond theirdeserts,to reverse or to compromise the workwhich it took us one whole generation to achieve,and to revert to the mischievous,obstructive,andimpoverishing system of protection.

  But are we such children that,after spendingtwenty years—as I may say from 1840 to 1860—inbreaking down the huge fabric of protection,in1879 we are seriously to set about building it up a-gain? lf that be right,gentlemen,let it be done,but it will involve on our part a most humiliatingconfession.In my opinion it is not right.Protec-tion,however,let me point out,now is asked forin two forms,and I am next going to quote LordBeaconsfield for the purpose of expressing my con-currence with him.

  Mostly,I am bound to say,as far as my knowledge goes,protection has not been asked forby the agricultural interest,certainly not by thefarmers of Scotland.

  It has been asked for by certain injudiciouscliques and classes of persons connected with otherindustries-connected with some manufacturing in-dustries.They want to have duties laid upon man-ufactures.

  But here Lord Beaconsfield said-and I cor- dially agree with him-that he would be no party to the institution of a system in which protectionwas to be given to manufactures,and to be refusedto agriculture.

  That one-sided protection I deem to be totallyintolerable,and I reject it even at the threshold asunworthy of a word of examination or discussion.

  But let us go on to two-sided protection,andsee whether that is any better-that is to say,pro-tection in the shape of duties on manufactures,andprotection in the shape of duties upon corn,dutiesupon meat,duties upon butter and cheese andeggs,and everything that can be produced fromthe land.Now,gentlemen,in order to seewhether we can here find a remedy for our difficul-ties,I prefer to speculation and mere abstract ar-gument the method of reverting to experience.Ex-perience will give us very distinct lessons upon thismatter.We have the power,gentlemen,of goingback to the time when protection was in full and unchecked force,and of examining the effect which it produced upon the wealth of the country.How,will you say,do I mean to test that wealth? I mean to test that wealth by the exports of the country,and I will tell you why,because your prosperity depends upon the wealth of your customers—that is to say,upon their capacity to buy what you pro- duce.And who are your customers? Your cus- tomers are the industrial population of the coun- try,who produce what we export and send all over the world.Consequently,when exports increase,your customers are doing a large business,are growing wealthy,are putting money in their poc- kets,and are able to take that money out of theirpockets in order to fill their stomachs with what you produce.When,on the contrary,exports do not increase,your customers are poor,your prices go down,as you have felt within the last few years,in the price of meat,for example,and in other things,and your condition is proportionallydepressed.

  What has been the case,gentlemen,since wecast off the superstition of protection,since wediscarded the imposture of protection? From 1842,gentlemen,onward,the successive stages of freetrade began ;in 1842,in 1845,in 1846,in 1853,and again in 1860,the large measures were carried which have completely reformed your customs tar-iff,and reduced it from a taxation of twelve hun- dred articles to a taxation of,I think,less thantwelve.

  Now,under the system of protection,the ex-port trade of the country,the wealth and the pew-er of the manufacturing and producing classes topurchase your agricultural products,did not in- crease at all.

  But since 1842,and down to the present time,we have had the successive adoption of free-trademeasures;and what has been the state of the ex-port business of the country?It has risen in thisdegree,that that which from 1840 to 1842 aver-aged £50,000,000,from 1873 to 1878 averaged£218,000,000.You know very well,that whilerestriction was in force,you did not get the pricesthat you have been getting for the last twenty years.The price of wheat has been much the sameas it had been before.The price of oats is a betterprice than was to be had on the average of protec-tive times.But the price,with the exception ofwheat,of almost every agricultural commodity,the price of wool,the price of meat,the price ofcheese,the price of everything that the soil pro- duces,has been largely increased in a market freeand open to the world;because,while the artificialadvantage which you got through protection,as itwas supposed to be an advantage,was removed,you were brought into that free and open market,and the energy of free trade so enlarged the buyingcapacity of your customers that they were willingand able to give you,and did give you,a great dealmore for your meat,your wool,and your productsin general,than you would ever have got under thesystem of protection.

  Pericles,the great Athenian statesman,saidwith regard to women,their greatest merit was tobe never heard of.

  Now,what Pericles untruly said of women,Iam very much disposed to say of foreign affairs—their great merit would be to be never heard of.Unfortunately,instead of being never heard of,they are always heard of,and you hear almost ofnothing else; and I can't promise you,gentlemen,that you will be relieved from this everlasting din,becuase the consequences of an unwise meddlingwith foreign affairs are consequences that will forsome time neccessarily continue to trouble you,andthat will find their way to your pockets in theshape of increased taxation.

  The first thing is to foster the strength of theempire by just legislation and economy at home,thereby producing two of the great elements of na-tional power—namely,wealth,which is a physical element,and union and contentment,which aremoral elements—and to reserve the strength of theempire,to reserve the expenditure of that strengthfor great and worthy occasions abroad.Here is myfirst principle of foreign policy:good government athome.

  My second principle of foreign policy is this,that its aim ought to be to preserve to the nationsof the world—and especially,were it but forshame,when we recollect the sacred name we bearas Christians,especially to the Christian nations ofthe world—the blessings of peace.That is my se-cond principle.

  In my opinion the third sound principle isthis:to strive to cultivate and maintain,aye,to thevery uttermost,what is called the concert of Eu-rope;to keep the powers of Europe in union to-gether.And why? Because by keeping all in uniontogether you neutralize,and fetter,and bind upthe selfish aims of each.

  My fourth principle is:That you should avoidneedless and entangling engagements.You mayboast about them,you may brag about them,youmay say you are procuring consideration fof thecountry.You may say that an Englishman can nowhold up his head among the nations.But what doesall this come to,gentlemen? It comes to this,thatyou are increasing your engagements without in-creasing your strength;and if you increase engage-ments without increasing strength,you diminishstrength,you abolish strength;you really reducethe empire and do not increase it.You render itless capable of performing its duties;you render itan inheritance less precious to hand on to futuregenerations.

  My fifth principle is this,gentlemen:To ac-knowledge the equal rights of all nations,You maysympathize with one nation more than another.Nay,you must sympathize in certain circumstanceswith one nation more than another.You sympa-thize most with those nations,as a rule,withwhich you have the closest connection in language,in blood,and in religion,or whose circumstancesat the time seem to give the strongest claim tosympathy.But in point of right all are equal,andyou have no right to set up a system under whichone of them is to be placed under moral suspicionor espionage,or to be made the constant subject ofinvective.

  And that sixth is:That in my opinion foreignpolicy,subject to all the limitations that I have de-scribed,the foreign policy of England should al-ways be inspired by the love of freedom.Thereshould be a sympathy with freedom,a desire togive it scope,founded not upon visionary ideas,but upon the long experience of many generationswithin the shores of this happy isle,that in free-dom you lay the firmest foundations botn of loyaltyand order;the firmest foundations for the develop-ment of individual character,and the best provi-sion for the happiness of the nation at large.

威廉·尤尔特·格莱斯顿

论内政和外交

1879年11月7日

  先生们:今天,据我所知,你们中许多人对土地感兴趣,而我觉得目前所谓“农业不景气”是个十分严重而无法忽视的问题。我将就农业不景气的问题说几句话,特别是因为在我国一些地方提出了一些建议,这些建议所得到的赞扬远远超过了其应得的评价。这些建议的目的在于改变或者损害我们整整一代人为之奋斗的工作,并恢复那种有害的、起阻挠作用的、使农村贫瘠的保护制度。

  但是,在把20年时间——我可以说是从1840至1860年——用在摧毁这个巨大的保护结构之后,1879年我们又认真地着手重建,我们是这样幼稚的人吗?先生们,如果它是正确的,那么就让它重建起来吧!但对我们而言,却须非常丢脸地承认它。依我看来,它是错误的。可是,请允许我指出,人们以两种。

  形式要求保护;我将引用比肯斯费尔德勋爵的话以示我与其观点的一致。

  我必须说明的是,据我所知,提出要求保护的人多半并非出于农业方面的利益,苏格兰农民当然更不要求保护。

  提出要求保护的是某些与其他行业有关系,与某些制造业有关系的不明智的集团或阶级的人士。他们要求向制造业抽税。

  但是,比肯斯费尔德勋爵在这里说过(我衷心拥护他的观点):他不愿参与那种保护制造业而拒不保护农业的体系。

  我认为那种单方面的保护是完全不能容忍的,从一开始我就认为它不值得研究或讨论而摒弃它。

  但是,让我们继续谈谈双向保护,看看是否要好些——双向保护就是向制造业的产品征税,也向粮食、肉食、黄油、奶酪、禽蛋以及地里产的一切东西征税。先生们,现在为了找到克服困难的办法,我主张借鉴于经验而不是进行猜测和完全抽象的讨论。经验可以为我们提供有关这个问题的十分清楚的教训。先生们,我们有权回顾那保护盛行,不受抑制的时代;有权检验它对国家财产所起的作用。我所说的检验财产是什么意思?我是说根据国家的出口来检验财产,我将说明其原因,因为你们的繁荣取决于你们的顾客的财富——换言之,取决于购买你们的产品的能力。谁是顾客?顾客是国家的工业人口,他们生产我国出口和运往全世界的产品。所以,出口的增加表明顾客的生意兴隆,正变得越来越富,正将钱装进腰包,他们有能力从腰包中掏出钱来填饱肚子。相反,出口不增加时,顾客就穷!物价就下跌,就像过去几年内你们所感觉到的,比如:肉价和其他东西的价格即是如此,你们的情况也就相应地变坏。

  先生们,自从我们抛弃了对保护的迷信,扔掉保护这种欺骗行为之后,情况怎么样了呢?先生们,自由贸易从1842年开始后,连续进行了几个阶段。1842年、1845年、1846年、1853年和1860年采取了强有力的措施,全面改革了关税,应课税的1200种商品,我想,减少到了不到12种商品。

  而在保护制度下,国家的出口贸易,从事生产和制造业的阶层购买农产品的财力却根本没有增加。

  但是从1842年起到目前为止,我们连续采取了自由贸易措施;我国的出口贸易情况如何呢?出口贸易增长了,增长程度为:1840至1842年平均年增长5,000万英镑;1873至1878年,平均年增长2.18亿英镑。诸位都知道,实行限制时,就不可能按过去20年内的价格定价。小麦的价格与过去的价格大致相同。燕麦的价格比保护时期的平均价更公平合理。然而,除小麦的价格外,几乎所有农产品的价格、羊毛的价格、猪肉的价格、乳酪的价格、地里生产的任何东西的价格,在自由和对外开放的市场上扶摇直上;因为,通过保护获得的这种人为的有利条件——它曾被认为是有利条件 ——一旦取消了,你们就被推向自由开放的市场,自由贸易的力量大大提高了你们的顾客的购买力,使他们愿意并能够也确实对你们的肉、羊毛和一般产品付出了比你们在保护制度下所能得到的多得多的钱。

  伟大的雅典政治家伯里克利谈及妇女时说,妇女的最大优点就是永远默默无闻。

  伯里克利关于妇女所说的不正确的话,现在我却很愿意用来说明外交事务——其优点将会是永远默默无闻。令人遗憾的是,它们并非永远默默无闻,而是经常被人提及,而且你们几乎再也听不到其他事物了。先生们,我无法允诺你们摆脱这种喧嚣,因为愚蠢地胡乱处理外交事务的后果必将在一段时间内继续困挠你们,将以提高税收的办法想方设法让你们掏腰包。

  我们的首要任务是通过国内公正的立法和经济来培植帝国实力,并由此产生国力的两大要素——财富,那是物质要素;融洽及知足,那是精神要素——并且保存帝国的实力,以便用于国外重要而值得的场合。这就是我的外交政策的第一原则:搞好内政。

  我的外交政策的第二条原则是:外交政策的目标应是世界上的各个国家——为使我们在想到我们所具有的基督教徒的神圣称呼时问心无愧,那就特别要使世界上的基督教国家——享有和平的幸福。这就是我的第二条原则。

  依我之见,第三条原则是:努力培养并尽力维持人们所说的欧洲和谐;保持欧洲列强团结一致。为什么要这样呢?因为把大家联合起来,就能抵消、束缚和限制每个国家自私的目的。

  我的第四条原则是:你们应避免多余的令人困扰的义务。你们可以炫耀这些义务,吹嘘这些义务,你们可以说你们是为国家着想的。你们可以说英国人现在能够在国际上昂起头来了。但是,先生们,这一切会有什么结果呢?结果是,你们的义务增加了,而力量却没有增加;你们减少了实力,破坏了实力;你们实际上削弱了帝国,而不是增强了它。你们使帝国履行职责的能力下降,给子孙后代遗留下的宝贵东西越来越少了。

  先生们,我的第五条原则是:承认所有国家享有平等权利。你可以对某一国家给予比对其他国家更多的同情。而且,在某些情况下,对某国必须给予比对别的国家更多的同情。通常,你们最同情在语言、血缘、宗教上有着最密切联系的国家;或者其境况在当时最值得给予同情的国家。但是,就权利而言,大家一律平等。你们没有权力建立一种体制,在那种体制下,某一个国家的道德品行受到怀疑,或者受到监视,或者经常挨骂。

  我的第六条原则,依我之见,是外交政策受到我所谈到的所有各点的制约,英国的外交政策应该始终以对自由的爱为依归。要同情自由,要给它以发展的机会,这不应建立在不切实际的观念上,而应建立在这个幸福岛屿的边界内许多代人长期积累的经验之上;因为在自由中你能够奠定忠诚和秩序的基础;奠定发挥个性的最好的基础,并为整个国家提供最大程度的幸福。

王德华 译

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