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经济学人:圣诞节前英国的噩梦(3)

来源:经济学人 编辑:Magi    |  可可官方微信:ikekenet
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That leaves a low bar for the Liberal Democrats, and they clear it. They, too, have become more extreme since we backed them in 2017. Under a new leader, Jo Swinson, they have gone beyond the idea of a second referendum for an irresponsible promise to reverse Brexit unilaterally. This has deservedly backfired.

这给自由民主党留下了一个很低的门槛,而他们也通过了。自我们在2017年支持他们以来,他们也变得更加极端。在新领导人乔·斯温森的领导下,他们已经超越了第二次公投的想法,转而做出不负责任的承诺,单方面逆转英国退欧。这显然适得其反。
Yet their economic approach—a moderate increase in spending, paid for by broad-based tax increases—is the most sensible of the main parties, and is the only one to be honest about the cost of an ageing society. On climate change and social policy they strike the best balance between ambition and realism. As last time, they are the only choice for anyone who rejects both the hard Brexit of the Conservatives and the hardleft plans of Labour. Yet they will not win. So why back them? The practical reason is to restrain whoever ends up in Downing Street. Voters worry that backing the Lib Dems plays into Mr Corbyn’s hands, but our modelling suggests that votes and seats would come fairly evenly from both parties. Mr Corbyn is preparing to govern with the Scottish National Party, which would back most of his programme in return for another independence referendum. Having more Lib Dems would check his plans. Likewise, they would rein in Mr Johnson. Some Tories cling to the hope that if he wins a big majority he will drop the populist act and rediscover his liberal instincts. They are deluded. If he wins the Brexitbacking seats he is targeting with his promises of more state aid, do they expect him to switch back to the fantasy of building Singapore- on-Thames? The opposite is true: the bigger the Tory majority, the more drastic the party’s transformation.
然而,他们的经济策略——适度增加开支,由广泛的增税来支付——是主要政党中最明智的,而且是唯一一个诚实面对老龄化社会成本的。在气候变化和社会政策方面,他们在雄心和现实之间取得了最好的平衡。与上次一样,对于那些既反对保守党的“硬退欧”、也反对工党的“强硬左翼”计划的人来说,他们是唯一的选择。然而他们不会赢。那么为什么要支持他们呢?实际原因是要约束最终入主唐宁街的人。选民们担心支持自由民主党会正中科尔宾的下怀,但我们的模型显示,两党的选票和席位将相当均衡。科尔宾正准备与苏格兰民族党共同执政,该党将支持他的大部分计划,以换取另一场独立公投。有更多的自由民主党人会阻止他的计划。同样,他们也会约束约翰逊。一些保守党人抱着这样的希望:如果他赢得了大多数选票,他将放弃民粹主义行为,重新发现他的自由主义本能。他们被欺骗了。如果他承诺提供更多的国家援助,从而赢得了他所瞄准的支持退欧的席位,他们还指望他会回到在泰晤士河上建造新加坡的幻想吗?事实恰恰相反:保守党占多数的席位越多,该党的转变就越剧烈。

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The principled reason is that the Lib Dems are closest to the liberalism on which this newspaper was founded. A strong Lib Dem showing would signal to voters who favour open markets and a liberal society that the centre is alive. The past few years have shown why Parliament needs good people such as Sam Gyimah, who left the Tories because of their extremism, and Chuka Umunna, who left Labour because of theirs. The course of Brexit has been repeatedly changed for the better by independent-minded MPS making the running. If Britain withdraws from the EU in January, the Lib Dem MPS will be among the best advocates of a deep trade deal and the strongest opponents of no-deal. There is no good outcome to this nightmare of an election. But for the centre to hold is the best hope for Britain.

有原则的原因是自由民主党最接近自由主义,而本报正是建立在自由主义之上。如果自民党表现强劲,将向支持开放市场和自由社会的选民发出一个信号:中间派依然存在。过去的几年已经证明了为什么议会需要像萨姆·吉马这样的好人,因为他们的极端主义而离开了托利党,而丘卡·尤穆纳因为他们的极端主义而离开了工党。有独立思想的议员们的参选,使英国退欧进程一再朝着更好的方向改变。如果英国在明年1月退出欧盟,自由民主党议员将成为深度贸易协议的最佳倡导者和不协议的最强烈反对者。这场噩梦般的选举没有好结果。但对英国来说,保持中间立场才是最大的希望。

译文由可可原创,仅供学习交流使用,未经许可请勿转载。

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