佔領華爾街、劫富濟貧,你覺得對嗎?

我們一起來看歷史學家Niall Ferguson與經濟學家Jeff Sachs的觀點

本文首次發表於: Dec 02 Sat 2017



經濟學家Jeff Sachs的觀點

          Jeff支持佔領華爾街的活動,認為華爾街最頂尖的1%菁英,過去30年來奪走大部分的經濟好處、奪走權利、操縱權利、扭曲權利,甚至違反法律,還在2008年時讓整個經濟癱瘓,但是金融海嘯後金融機構接連倒閉時,竟然許多金融機構都能夠得到政府紓困。「賺錢都華爾街在賺、賠錢還有政府紓困」這樣的過程讓美國居民都感到十分不齒。政府應該要多課富人稅來救濟窮人、增進窮人在基礎教育上的資源,才可以讓社會階層夠有流動的機會,提升美國的競爭力。

歷史學家Niall Ferguson的觀點

          Niall認為Jeff在占領華爾街的活動中搧風點火,譁眾取寵的散佈要「課富人稅救濟窮人」的觀念。Niall提到其實造成社會階層流動率低的原因有很多,但與華爾街的高薪、以及金融風暴並無相關。目前政府將大部分的稅收都用於國防、以及健康醫療。美國的健康醫療,大概是世界上最大的資金缺口,所以即使增加稅收,是否能夠用於教育,其實也是一個大問號。

本文觀點

          Jeff認為教育是國家未來競爭力的基礎,我認為是正確的論述。不過華爾街高階主管是否佔據太多社會資源?是否一直是造成階級流動障礙的原因?是否因此就必須要被課高額的稅賦?我認為是值得討論的。2008年,美國政府為了紓困,賠付了很多錢,華爾街製造了高額的社會成本,這是肯定的。但是果因此就對所有富人都課富人稅,似乎也不是那麼合理,許多非華爾街的富人會無故遭殃,況且如果真的提高富人稅賦,也不一定政府就會將資金用於救助窮人,反而運用在國防、或是健康醫療體系的話,那窮人仍然無法有效的獲取更多資源,進而產生階層的流動,關於這一點我認同Niall的說法。

          我認為在一般的情況之下,富人(不論是企業主、或是高階主管),所服務的公司已經繳交了高額稅賦了,如果要再對於個人課徵高額稅賦有「一隻羊剝兩層皮」的感覺。更何況,若政府硬要提高富人稅,那這些富人可以透過調高自身薪水、壓榨原低薪階級的方式,反而可能讓他們的稅後收入比原先更高,反而加高貧富差距、減少了階級之間的流動性。而且過高的富人稅,反而會讓握有更高金融資源的富人更有動機去避稅、逃稅,進而造成政府可能還收不到那麼多稅收。所以在是否提高稅收的議題上,我也是比較支持Niall的論述。

          富人取之於社會,必須回饋給社會,而我認為是要透過企業必須多合理稅賦的方式會比較恰當,個人稅收還是維持相同較適合。但如果有一間企業,虧欠政府和社會太多,就像是金融海嘯時其授紓困的金融機構,那這些企業之後都是要「還債的」。JeffNiall都沒有討論到的論點是,是否可以透過調高華爾街這些受紓困企業的稅賦、或是要求這些企業提出補償的方式,讓華爾街這些企業能夠向社會贖罪,彌補對於社會帶來的損失與傷害。我認為這可能才是整體來說,比較「正義」的處理方式。

          所以各位讀者,你們還認為「劫富(華爾街)濟貧(貧窮戶)」是正確的嗎?

 

 

以下為原文,供大家參考:


 


翻譯自:CNN 20111031日新聞,網址:點我。本部落格翻譯

標題:Jeffrey Sachs(經濟學家/薩克斯) versus Niall Ferguson(歷史學家弗格森) on Occupy Wall Street

 

Fareed Zakaria: Jeff, you were at Occupy Wall Street. You've in a sense lent it support. Why do you do that? What do you think is going on there?

主持人/扎卡里亞:傑夫,你參與了「佔領華爾街」活動。你在某種意義上借給了它支持。你為什麼這樣做?你覺得在那裡發生了甚麼事呢?

 

Jeffrey Sachs: Well, I think they have a basically correct message that when they say "we are the 99 percent," that they're reflecting the fact that the top one percent not only ran away with the prize economically in the last 30 years, but also took the power, manipulated it, twisted it, broke the law. Brought the world economy to its knees actually, and it's time to correct things. And I think that that's what Occupy Wall Street is really about. The fact that every marquee (大型) firm on Wall Street broke the law in a major way, it's now paying a series of fines. Some people are going to jail. People are disgusted about this.

經濟學家/薩克斯:我認為他們(佔領華爾街的群眾)有一個基本的正確信息,就是當他們說「我們是99%(的民眾)時,他們反映了這樣一個事實:最頂尖的1%菁英,不僅在過去的30年拿走了大部分經濟好處,還奪走了權力,操縱權利,扭曲權利,並違反法律,讓世界經濟癱瘓了。因此,是時候糾正一下他們了。我認為這就是佔領華爾街的真正意義。華爾街的每一家大公司都曾嚴重的違法,未來還要支付許多罰款,甚至有些人將要入獄。人們對此感到厭惡。

Global Public Square

Fareed Zakaria: But isn't what has caused the one percent or five percent of the top to do well, these very broad forces of technology, the information revolution which have empowered global knowledge workers, which have empowered capital rather than labor? So if it's all these much bigger structural forces, is it going to be remedied by some kind of political solution like a Buffett tax?

主持人 扎卡里亞:但是讓最頂層1%5%菁英登峰造極的項目,包括:科技的力量、資訊革命產生出更多的具備全球視野的工作者,是否反而讓「資本」更容易流動,而非讓「勞工」更容易流動呢?所以如果是因為這些更大型的結構力量的話,是否能夠有一些政策帶來解藥,像是「巴菲特式稅」?

(意指示透過多課富人稅,幫助窮人,進而贈進社會階級動)

 

Jeffrey Sachs: I don't think it is all that. I think that markets caused a widening of inequalities in just about every high-income country. But some governments did something constructive about it, where starting in 1981 the U.S. government amplified this in quite reckless ways.

Because when Ronald Reagan came to office, rather than saying we have globalization, we have competition, we now have to do something about our skills, our technology and so forth, he said that government is not the solution to our problems. Government is the problem. It was a fateful call. And this is the path that we've been on for 30 years of dismantling that part of our social institution which institutions which could actually help with job training, help with education, help with science and technology in a more effective way.

But more than that, Wall Street didn't just gain from globalization, it has been completely reckless. They gamed the system. They packed toxic assets. They sold them to unwitting investors. They let the hedge funds bet against them. And the SEC is finally calling them to account.

But the public is disgusted because after that happened, lo and behold, the next thing is that they begged for bailouts; they got the bailouts. The moment they got the bailouts, they said, "Leave us alone", "deregulate", "free markets". So they're completely hypocritical (虛偽) in this behavior.

We want everything of ours until we need help, then we want your help, once we get your help, then we want everything again. And it's that kind of impunity that has brought people out around this country deeply angry.

經濟學家/薩克斯:我不認為那是全部的原因,我認為自由市場在所有高度發展的國家,都會造成廣泛的貧富不均問題。但有一些政府就做了很有建設性的政策,美國1981年時也宣稱有做,但那算是一個比較草率的開始。

當雷根剛上台的時候,他曾說「政府並不是解決目前問題的方式」,反而沒說「美國現在已經全球化、美國有競爭力,我們(政府)要再做一些事情來強化美國的技能、與科技」。政府,其實是一個問題,雷根說出了一個重要的關鍵。過去30年美國曾走在一個「拆解社會機構」的路徑之中,這些社會上的機構反倒是真正能夠幫助職業訓練、促使教育發展,並推進科技與科學發展更有效的方式。

除此之外,華爾街並沒有從全球化學到甚麼,反倒是輕率地看待全球化。他們只把全球經濟體系看做一場遊戲,把「有害、劇毒」的資產做層層包裝,並將將包裝後的商品賣給不知情的投資人。

大眾之所以會對華爾街產生反感,就是因為當金融海嘯發生之後,虧損的金融機構竟然向政府要求紓困!而且政府真的通過了紓困法案!當這些金融機構得到紓困資金之後,不久竟然說「讓我們獨立經營」、「降低管制」、「自由市場」。所以啊,這些金融機構的行為完全就是超級虛偽。

華爾街對於這個世界予取予求、不可一世、態度傲慢,直到需要政府的幫忙才會低頭,然而當危機度過之後又開始變得貪婪、慾望無窮。就是這樣的「逍遙法外」,讓美國的人民對於華爾街感到極度不爽。

 

Niall Ferguson: Well, first of all, I think it's important to avoid criminalizing one percent of the population which you just did, Jeff. I mean, there's no question that major financial institutions have been fined and rightly so. But to turn that into an indictment of three million people seems to me

Seems to me actually rather reckless. And having watched what you said at Occupy Wall Street, I have to say I thought you overstepped the mark and ceased to be an academic and became a demagogue at that point.

歷史學家/弗格森:呃…首先,Jeff,我認為很重要的一件事情,就是要避免像你一樣批評那1%的菁英人口。我的意思是,當然美國主要的金融機構都被罰款,這是無庸置疑的。但是如果因為這樣,你就要起訴華爾街300萬名工作者,我覺得又太草率了。

而且,在看了你在「佔領華爾街」活動中發言的影片,我必須要說我認為你有點管過界了,開始不搞學術,變成是一個搧風點火的人。

 

Jeffrey Sachs: Whoa, Niall. You're the one who said that this

經濟學家/薩克斯:噢,Niall,你還真的是說這個的…

 

Niall Ferguson: No, let me no, let me finish, Jeff.

歷史學家/弗格森:不,請先讓我講完,Jeff

 

Jeffrey Sachs: The last time bankers came close to ruling America

經濟學家/薩克斯:上一次銀行家幾乎要統治美國了!

 

Niall Ferguson: Hang on, hang on. I let you have I let you have your say.

歷史學家/弗格森:等一下、等一下,我會讓你講你要講的。

 

Jeffrey Sachs: No, don't call me names like this.

經濟學家/薩克斯:不,請不要這樣子叫我的名子。

 

Niall Ferguson: This is a demagogic argument especially for somebody who knows that the principal driver of inequality has actually been globalization, not malpractice by Wall Street.

The second part of your argument is that banks misbehaved in Europe, too. I mean, those countries that did not go down the Reagan route have got banks that are insolvent, banks that were guilty of incompetence and malpractice.

So you argued that this was something specific to the United States. And the faults of and the faults of Ronald Reagan.

歷史學家/弗格森:你這就是一個譁眾取寵的論述!只要是知道造成全球不平等、貧富差距的原因其實是「全球化」,而非是因為華爾街弊端的人,都會知道這個事實,且認為你在譁眾取寵!

 

Jeffrey Sachs: Of course it was.

經濟學家/薩克斯:不!貧富不均當然是華爾街造成的。

 

FERGUSON: Just a second. The banks in Europe are in just as big a mess but they didn't go down the Reagan route. So it's not only bad economics, but it seems to me it's bad history and certainly bad politics.

歷史學家/弗格森:給我一點時間表數。歐洲的銀行現在也是一團亂,但是他們並沒有走出雷根的路徑。所以呢,這不僅僅是因為糟糕的經濟,似乎也是因為糟糕的歷史,當然也因為糟糕的政治環境。

 

Jeffrey Sachs: Let's talk what I said and what is important here. And what I've said is that in a society that is so unequal as ours and where the very top has abused the system repeatedly in the banks, the CEOs of this country taking home take-home pay hundreds of times their workers' pay, unlike any other part of the world, the hedge funds and the banks got unbelievable terms of the deal to get capital gains taxes, carried interest down to 15 percent tax rates. So outrageous compared to what the rest of America bears.

經濟學家/薩克斯:我們來談談我剛剛講的,到底甚麼是重要的?就像是我說的,我們的社會真的特別不平等,而且最頂端的菁英,這些銀行,正在重複地霸凌整個系統,華爾街「王國」的CEO所拿的薪水是一般員工的100倍以上。不像是其他國家的操作方式,避險基金與銀行做了無數次的交易來避免資本利得稅,讓利潤需倍課的稅下降到15%,比起其他美國人要繳交的稅,這簡直是低的不像話!

 

 

Niall Ferguson: You can't believe that this is the reason why the bottom quintile (五分之一) of the population is in poverty and has very limited social mobility. That's nothing to do with what happens on Wall Street, as you well know. The real problem that we have in this country, it seems to me, is declining social mobility, and not enough is said about that.

歷史學家/弗格森:你可能沒有辦法想像,低薪的原因是因為最貧窮的20%人口,他們沒有社會階級流動能力。低薪的原因,和華爾街發生的事情無關,就和你知道的一樣。我們這個國家真實的問題,對我來說,是社會上正在下降的社會階級流動,而我們對這方面的討論仍不夠。

 

Jeffrey Sachs: Well, I write a great deal about it. And the big difference of social mobility

經濟學家/薩克斯:呃…我曾寫過大量關於移動力的文章,而社會階級流動和…最大的不同是…

 

 

Niall Ferguson: Right. And what is the principal of

歷史學家/弗格森:是的。而…的原則是…

 

 

Jeffrey Sachs: The big difference of social mobility in this country is the lack of public financing for early childhood development, for daycare, for preschool, for early cognitive development, for nutrition programs, for decent schools, unlike all of the rest of the high-income world. We do not help the poor. And that's why our social mobility has come to the lowest level of any of the high-income countries.

And we are 10 or 15 percentage points lower in government revenues to help for that. And I'm asking in the book for just a few percentage points and some decency at the top that they start paying their taxes at a decent rate so that we can actually pay for preschool and pay for childcare. And that's what low social mobility is about, Niall.

經濟學家/薩克斯:美國社會階層流動率很低的原因,和其他國家比起來最大的不同就是,我們缺少政府給學童成長的融資,來讓孩童成長。不論是托兒所、幼兒園、發展孩童認知、增強兒童營養、或是受正式教育,比起其它高所得國家,我們都缺乏融資資源。我們並沒有幫助窮人,這也就是為什麼美國的社會階層流動是高所得國家當中最低的。

我們比起其他國家,政府大概少花了10%~15%的稅收在做孩童教育與發展之規劃,而我在我的書中要求要讓精英以多幾個百分點的方式繳納稅款,以便美國實際上可以支付學前教育費用和兒童看護費用。那才是關於「低社會流動性」的原因與解決之道,Niall

 

 

Niall Ferguson: But when you look at the quality of public education in this country, you can't simply attribute its low quality to a lack of funding. And I think there's a legitimate argument that the biggest obstacle to social mobility in this country right now is not the fat cats of Wall Street, whom I do not rush to defend, but the teachers unions, who make it almost impossible to improve public school in cities like New York where we are today.

歷史學家/弗格森:但是,當你看到美國公立教育的品質時,你不能完全將低品質的原因歸咎於缺乏資金。我認為,目前有合法的論述在討論其實造成社會階級流動率低障礙的原因並不是在華爾街工作的肥貓,我並不想要馬上幫他們辯護,但教師聯盟讓紐約公立學校的品質幾乎無法再進步了。

 

 

Fareed Zakaria: But would you comment on Jeff's basic point which is, you know, yes, it's not true that the gap has been produced entirely because of government policy, but that you could use government policy and government resources to help in various ways. Education may be one part of it, child nutrition would be another part of it. You know, and that that becomes impossible because you're taxing at 14 percent and spending at 23 percent?

主持人/扎卡里亞:但Ferguson (歷史學家),你如何評論Jeff 最根本的論點,也就是你知道的,公共政策造成了社會階級鴻溝的論述並不是正確的,但政府政策卻再某些層面上可以有所助益。教育也許是其中的一種方式,孩童影養的攝取可能是另一部分。你知道的,但如果你被課了14%稅、然後花了23%的收入,那可能社會階級就開始無法流動?

 

Niall Ferguson: So a major problem here is that the projects of transforming the United States into something more like a European country does imply significant increase in taxation as well as in expenditure. And there are two obstacles to this. One, it's very clear that this would not be timely given the situation that the economy finds itself in. And two, most Americans don't believe that that is going to deliver the kind of improvement that they would like to see in education.

Look how the federal government fares and the programs that it does spend a lot of money on. Health care, social security, I mean, it's already insolvent with its provision through Medicare. This is one of the hugest unfunded liabilities in the world. And the answer that Jeff has to the U.S. problem is let's create an even bigger federal spending program on public education. I mean, it's just not credible, Jeff.

歷史學家/弗格森:所以呢,有一個很明顯的議題就是,如果把美國大學變成像是歐洲的大學一樣,就代表美國人必須要再多納稅。而目前有兩個障礙,第一就是因為目前經濟狀況不好,所以提高稅賦並不是一個可以及時達成方式;第二是我們如果看看聯邦政府收稅、以及支出的重點項目,健康照護、社會安全與國防,我要說的是,健康照護幾乎都要破產了!這是世界上最大的資金缺口。但Jeff卻說我們要有更高的支出再公立教育上,我認為這是完全不可能的,Jeff

 

Jeffrey Sachs: Niall, you're confusing so many issues. My point is that if we are going to be decent and competitive, we have to invest in it. That's paying the price of civilization. That costs money. The fact that the United States collects in total revenues at all levels of government right now about 27 percent of national income compared with 35 percent and above in other countries is the gap of decency right now where

經濟學家/薩克斯:尼爾,你混淆了很多問題。 我的觀點是,如果美國要能變得更體面、和更具競爭力,美國就必須投資。 這是付出「文明的代價」。 這花錢。 美國現在各級政府總收入中之稅賦支出比例達到27%,而比起其他國家動輒35%以上要低出許多,這正是差距所在。

 

Fareed Zakaria: But it's also the gap you're saying of competitiveness. Now, the path to competitiveness for you is a larger government that spends more, correct?

主持人/扎卡里亞:但這也是你說的競爭力鴻溝的問題,現在,你說如果政府要提升競爭力的話,就一定要支出更多,對嗎?

 

 

SACHS: If it invests properly, of course.

經濟學家/薩克斯:如果適當投資的話,當然囉。

 

 

Niall Ferguson: You can understand why people might be skeptical about that.

歷史學家/弗格森:你大概可以了解為何人民都對這樣的想法存疑。

 

 

Jeffrey Sachs: I'm talking about investment in education. I'm talking about investment in job skills. I'm talking about investment in science and technology. Talking about investment in 21st century infrastructure. And we've been for 30 years demonizing government. We've been demonizing taxation. We have neglected to understand that a proper economy runs on two pillars, a market and government. And until we come back to that basic level of understanding that we need a mixed economy, not just a market economy, we'll continue to fail.

經濟學家/薩克斯:我談的是教育的投資、我談的是工作技能的投資、我談的是科技投資、我談的還有21世紀的基礎設施投資。我們已經有30年的時間把政府妖魔化了,我們一直在妖魔化「稅收」。我們忽視了理解一個適當的經濟運行在兩個支柱上,分別為「市場」和「政府」。 直到我們能夠理解美國需要的是「混合經濟」,而不是「市場經濟」之前,美國注定繼續失敗。

 

 

Niall Ferguson: Well, I'm sure the Chinese are listening to this debate with glee thinking, well, there are still academics in the west who think that the route to salvation is to expand the role of the state because that's certainly not what is happening in China. It is not what is happening in India. It is not what is happening in Brazil. The most dynamic economies in the world today are the ones which are promoting market reforms and reining in the rule of the state, which in those countries grew hypertrophically in the 20th century and that is a big problem in Jeff Sachs' argument.

歷史學家/弗格森:呃…我肯定中國人正在用興高采烈的思維來聽這場辯論呢,好吧,西方還有學者認為拯救之路就是要擴大國家的角色,因為這當然不是中國發生的事情、不是在印度發生的事情、這不是巴西發生的事情。 當今世界上最具活力的經濟體,都在促進市場改革、駕馭國家治理的經濟體系,這些國家在20世紀都在這些國家肥胖增長,這是Jeff論證中的一個大問題。

 

 

Jeffrey Sachs: Thank you for the lecture. But the catching up phenomenon is quite different from the problems that the United States or other high income societies face right now, and for us

經濟學家/薩克斯:感謝你的授課。但「超趕現象」與美國或其他高收入社會面臨的問題截然不同,而對於我們來說…

 

 

Niall Ferguson: The problem is the falling behind phenomenon.

歷史學家/弗格森:問題是落後的現象

 

 

Jeffrey Sachs: - and for us to be able to have high prosperity at the living standards we want, we need training, we need education, we need infrastructure, we need governments that can pay for that.

經濟學家/薩克斯:為了我們能夠在我們想要的生活水平上獲得高度的繁榮,我們需要培訓,我們需要教育,我們需要基礎設施,我們需要能夠為此付費的政府。

 

 

Niall Ferguson: But you forgot and we need higher progressive taxation on the private sector, because that's the most important part -

歷史學家/弗格森:但是你忘記了,我們需要對私營部門徵收更高的累進稅,因為這是最重要的部分

 

 

Jeffrey Sachs: And we need the rich to pay their way, absolutely. Because they've run away with the prize. And they've run away with the prize -

經濟學家/薩克斯:我們需要富人來支付他們的錢。 因為他們在記得利益之後就逃走了

 

Niall Ferguson: There's a simplification.

歷史學家/弗格森:你過度簡化了

 

 

Fareed Zakaria: Unfortunately

主持人/扎卡里亞:很不幸的…

 

Jeffrey Sachs: That's part of the solution, stop calling it just one thing, Niall.

經濟學家/薩克斯:這就是解決方案的一部分,不要說它只是一件事,Niall

 

 

Fareed Zakaria: All right. I don't think I think this is one of the rare cases where I was superfluous as a moderator. Jeff Sachs, Niall Ferguson, thank you very much.

主持人/扎卡里亞:好吧。我不認為…呃…身為主持人,這是我少數覺得自己是多餘的情況

。 傑夫·薩克斯,尼爾·弗格森,非常感謝。

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