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為什么特朗普被彈劾的可能性令人恐懼

更新時間:2019/9/27 21:43:14 來源:紐約時報中文網 作者:佚名

Why a Trump Impeachment Should Terrify You
為什么特朗普被彈劾的可能性令人恐懼

President Trump deserves to be impeached. But the prospect terrifies me, and it should terrify you, too.

特朗普總統應該被彈劾。但這種可能性使我恐懼,也應該使你恐懼。

That’s not to say that it’s the wrong move. Arguably, it’s the only move, at least in terms of fidelity to the Constitution and to basic decency. From the moment that Trump stepped into the office of the presidency, he has degraded it — with words that a president has no business speaking (or tweeting); with ceaseless lies; with infantile and often unhinged behavior; with raging conflicts of interest; with managerial ineptitude; with a rapacious ego that’s never sated; and with foreign dealings that compromise America’s values, independence and interests. How can principled lawmakers not tell him, in the most emphatic manner available, that enough is enough?

不是說彈劾是錯誤之舉。按理說,這是唯一該做的,至少從對憲法的忠誠、以及基本的行為準則角度而言。從特朗普踏入總統辦公室那一刻起,他就一直在侮辱這個重要職務——用一位總統無權用的語言(或無權用的推文);用無休止的謊言;用幼稚且常常精神錯亂的行為;用嚴重的利益沖突;用管理上的無能;用永遠無法滿足的貪婪自負;以及用有損美國價值觀、獨立性和利益的國外交易。堅持原則的立法者們怎能不用他們可使用的最強有力的方式告訴他,該適可而止了?

But there’s no way to say what happens now that a formal impeachment inquiry is being opened. None. You’re going to hear a lot in coming days and weeks about Bill Clinton, but using the example of his impeachment in late 1998 is a bit ridiculous: He was a very different president accused of very different offenses at a very different time. Besides which, political analysts who do cite it don’t agree on the lessons. So a pundit making confident predictions about the political fallout from the impeachment of Trump is a pundit far out on a slender limb.

但在正式啟動彈劾調查之際,人們現在絕對無法知道將發生什么。一丁點都不知道。你會在未來幾天和幾周里聽到很多關于比爾·克林頓(Bill Clinton)的話題,但用克林頓1998年底遭彈劾的例子說事兒有點荒唐:他是一位非常不同的總統,他在一個非常不同的年代被指控犯有非常不同的罪名。此外,引用那次彈劾的政治分析人士對彈劾的教訓沒有一致意見。因此,一名對彈劾特朗普將帶來的政治后果自信地做預測的權威,也是一名處于極其危險境地的權威。

Any scenario is possible, including one in which impeachment redounds to Trump’s benefit and increases the chances of his re-election, because he paints himself a martyr, eludes conviction in the Senate, frames that as exoneration and watches his fans mobilize and turn out as never before. And a second Trump term wouldn’t just be the sadly suboptimal byproduct of a noble stand; it would be disastrous. Morally as well as practically, limiting this unfit, amoral, unsteady man’s time in the presidency takes precedence over any small cluster of sentences written centuries ago.

任何情形都有可能,包括彈劾會對特朗普的利益有好處,從而增加他的連任可能,因為他將把自己裝扮成受難者,躲避參議院的定罪,把那說成是宣布他無罪,然后看著自己的粉絲們行動起來,出來投他票的人數比以往任何時候都多。第二個特朗普任期也不只會是高尚立場的可悲次優副產品,那還會是一場災難。無論在道德層面還是實際層面,限制這個不稱職、不道德、不穩定之人的總統任期比幾個世紀前所寫的任何一小串句子都重要。

But while an impeachment’s impact on November 2020 is unknowable, its effect on us as a nation is almost certain. A dangerously polarized and often viciously partisan country would grow more so, with people on opposing sides hunkering down deeper in their camps and clinging harder to their chosen narratives as the president — concerned only with himself — ratcheted up his insistence that truth itself was subjective and up for grabs.

但是,雖然彈劾對2020年11月的影響無法知道,彈劾對我們國家造成的影響卻幾乎可以肯定。一個兩極分化到了危險程度、對自己黨派的支持到了常常是惡劣的程度的國家會愈演愈烈,處在對立面的人們會對自己陣營的觀點更堅持不懈,更執著于自己選擇的敘事,而只關心自己的總統將繼續加強他的真理本身是主觀的、是供人爭奪的固執主張。

That’s not a reason to blink, but it’s a reality to brace for. At a juncture when we so desperately need to rediscover common ground, we’d be widening the fault lines. Bringing the country together afterward would call for more than a talented politician; it would demand a miracle worker. None of the Democratic presidential candidates qualify.

這不是要失敗的理由,而是要接受的現實。在我們如此迫切地需要重新找到共同點的時刻,我們會進一步擴大對立雙方的距離。在此之后將國家團結起來需要的不止是一位天才政治家,還需要能創造奇跡的人。還沒有哪一位民主黨總統候選人夠得上這個水平。

Impeachment should terrify you because it would mean a continued, relentless, overwhelming focus on Trump’s lawlessness, antics, fictions and inane tweets. He would win in the short term — and all Americans would lose — because as long as most of the oxygen in Washington is consumed by the ghastly carnival of this barker, there’s too little left for the nation’s very real problems and for scrutiny of his substantive inadequacy in addressing them.

彈劾應該使你恐懼,因為它將意味著把特朗普的目無法紀、荒唐行為、虛構的故事和愚蠢的推文作為持續的、無休止的、鋪天蓋地的焦點。他在短期內會贏——全體美國人則會輸——因為只要華盛頓的大部分功夫都耗在這個推銷手令人作嘔的狂歡上,可用來解決國家的真正問題、審查他在解決這些問題上的嚴重不勝任的時間就少之又少。

From the House Republicans’ persecution of Hillary Clinton through the permanent hysteria of House Democrats under Trump, Washington has devolved ever further into a place where process muscles out progress, grandstanding eclipses governing and noise muffles any meaningful signal. To be engaged in politics is to be engaged in battle — and that shouldn’t and needn’t always be so.

從眾議院共和黨人對希拉里·克林頓(Hillary Clinton)的迫害,到眾議院民主黨人在特朗普治下沒完沒了的歇斯底里,華盛頓已比以往任何時候都更嚴重地退化,成為了一個程序取代進展、嘩眾取寵勝于治理、噪音蓋過任何有意義的信息的地方。參與政治就是參與戰斗——這不應當也不必總是如此。

Where’s the infrastructure plan that we’re — oh — a quarter-century late in implementing? Where are the fixes to a health care system whose problems go far beyond the tens of millions of Americans still uninsured? What about education? Impeachment would shove all of those issues even further to the margins than they already are.

我們已經——噢——晚實施四分之一世紀的基礎設施計劃哪去兒了?醫療保健體系問題的解決方案又在哪里?這些問題影響的遠不止數千萬仍無醫保的美國人。教育的問題呢?彈劾會把所有這些問題推到比它們現在已經處在的位置更邊緣的地方。

During the Democratic primary and then the general election, the Trump melodrama and the Trump spectacle would overshadow all else. And many Americans’ estrangement from Washington — their cynicism about its ability to improve their lives even a whit — would intensify.

在民主黨初選及隨后的大選中,特朗普夸大表演和特朗普奇觀會讓所有別的東西黯然失色。而許多美國人與華盛頓的隔閡——以及他們對政府是否能改善他們的生活哪怕一丁點的憤世嫉俗態度——會不斷加劇。

That could be all the more true on account of their confusion. If you’re favorably disposed toward Trump and receptive to his claims of persecution, you’ve watched the meticulous and drawn-out work of Robert Mueller, you’ve noticed a seemingly nonstop schedule of Capitol Hill hearings and of star witnesses (Michael Cohen, Mueller, Bill Barr, Corey Lewandowski), and you thought that the House Judiciary Committee was already doing an impeachment inquiry. The latest developments strike you as “Groundhog Day” on the Potomac.

由于人們的困惑,這尤其是再真實不過了。如果你對特朗普有好感,并且樂于接受他稱自己受迫害的斷言,看過羅伯特·穆勒(Robert Mueller)周密且花了很長時間的調查,注意到國會大廈似乎無休止地安排的聽證會和明星證人(邁克爾·科恩[Michael Cohen]、穆勒、比爾·巴爾[Bill Barr]、科里·萊萬多夫斯基[Corey Lewandowski]),而且你以為眾議員司法委員會(House Judiciary Committee)已經在展開彈劾調查。這些最新事態于你就像是波托馬克河上的《土撥鼠之日》(Groundhog Day)。

If you’re horribly offended and utterly exhausted by Trump, you’re tempted to cheer impeachment as long-sought justice and prayed-for release and forget that it’s just the prelude to the main act, which is a trial in the Senate. That chamber is controlled by Republicans, who, based on current conditions, are as likely to convict Trump as they are to co-sponsor Elizabeth Warren’s wealth tax. So Trump’s supporters would wind up furious that he was put through what they regarded as an overwrought exercise with a foregone conclusion, while the frustration of Trump’s detractors would be exponentially multiplied. Let the healing begin!

如果特朗普讓你感到深受冒犯,而且把你搞得徹底筋疲力盡,你會把彈劾當作等待已久的正義和你所企盼的獲釋感而忍不住歡呼雀躍,忘記了這不過是重頭戲——參議院的彈劾審理——的前奏。參議院也是由共和黨人控制的,從目前的情形看,他們給特朗普定罪的可能性與聯名支持伊麗莎白·沃倫(Elizabeth Warren)的財富稅法案的可能性不相上下。于是到頭來,特朗普的支持者會對他被迫經歷在他們看來是已有預料的必然結局的過分做法而憤怒不已,而特朗普批評者的挫敗感則會指數式增長。讓我們開始愈合創傷吧!

And would impeachment proceedings effectively lay bare — and force Americans to focus on — sins of Trump’s that are being ignored? That’s long been one of Democrats’ arguments for impeachment, but I wonder. For starters, some of the hearings to date — Lewandowski’s in particular — raise questions about their ability to pry loose what they want from witnesses and isolate the damning evidence amid the ambient vitriol. But more than that, there has been such saturation coverage of Trump that many voters may not be able to stomach it any more, and today’s political tribalism doesn’t allow for all that much in the way of epiphanies and transformations. Trump’s true colors were conspicuous from the start. You either saw a perverse rainbow or you stared into darkness.

再者,彈劾程序能有效地揭露——并迫使美國人關注——特朗普那些被忽視的罪惡嗎?這長期以來一直是民主黨人主張彈劾的一個理由,但我有點懷疑。首先,迄今為止的一些聽證會——尤其是萊萬多夫斯基的——讓人有疑問,這些聽證會是否有能力從證人那里挖出想要得到的東西,并從聽證會上尖刻的言論中找出確鑿的證據。但還不止于此,對特朗普的報道已經太過飽和,以至于許多選民也許不想再看更多的,而且當今的部落政治也不允許有那么多的頓悟和轉變。特朗普的本色從一開始就顯而易見。你要么看見一道反常的彩虹,要么凝視著黑暗。

Meanwhile, Trump. How vulnerable will drawn-out impeachment proceedings make him feel? How impotent? How desperate? To flex his power, vent his fury or distract the audience, what would he do? He’s untethered by scruple. He’s capable of anything. Maybe it’s not just a culture war that he’d whip up. Maybe it’s the real thing.

同時還有特朗普本人。漫長的彈劾程序將讓他感到多脆弱?多無能為力?多絕望?為顯示他的權力、發泄他的憤怒,或者轉移人們的注意力,他會怎么做?他不受任何顧慮的牽制。他能干出任何事情。也許他會挑起的不只是一場文化戰。也許那會是一場真刀實槍的戰爭。

Certainly he’d do all he could to persuade Americans of the nefariousness of Democrats, and absolutely his strategy would be to smear the people, the procedures and the institutions arrayed against him as utterly unworthy of trust. If holding on to power meant ruling over rubble, so be it. Trump is beholden only to Trump, and he’d simply declare the rubble gold dust.

當然,他會盡他所能讓美國人相信民主黨人的邪惡,而他的策略絕對會是把各種各樣的反對他的人、程序和機構誹謗為完全不值得信任。如果抓住權力不放意味著統治一片廢墟的話,那就這樣吧。特朗普只對特朗普心存感激,他只會簡單地把廢墟宣稱為金粉。

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