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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


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.














  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。









王德华 译

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