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  • So here's the most important economic fact of our time.

    當今最重要的經濟現實是

  • We are living in an age of surging income inequality,

    我們處於所得差距激增的年代

  • particularly between those at the very top

    尤其是最頂端的一群

  • and everyone else.

    所得遠高於其他人

  • This shift is the most striking in the U.S. and in the U.K.,

    這種轉變在美國和英國最惹眼

  • but it's a global phenomenon.

    但全球皆然

  • It's happening in communist China,

    共產中國看得到

  • in formerly communist Russia,

    前共產國家俄國也如此

  • it's happening in India, in my own native Canada.

    印度和敝國加拿大也發生了

  • We're even seeing it in cozy social democracies

    連溫馨的社會民主國家也看得到

  • like Sweden, Finland and Germany.

    例如瑞典、芬蘭、德國

  • Let me give you a few numbers to place what's happening.

    讓我列舉一些數據以便點出現況

  • In the 1970s, the One Percent

    1970年代,頂端1%的人

  • accounted for about 10 percent of the national income

    所得佔全國的一成

  • in the United States.

    這是在美國

  • Today, their share has more than doubled

    如今他們所得的比率倍增

  • to above 20 percent.

    佔全國所得兩成以上

  • But what's even more striking

    但更引人注目的是

  • is what's happening at the very tippy top

    在極頂端的人

  • of the income distribution.

    所得分配的變化

  • The 0.1 percent in the U.S.

    現在美國最頂端0.1%的人

  • today account for more than eight percent

    所得超過

  • of the national income.

    全國的8%

  • They are where the One Percent was 30 years ago.

    30年前,這是頂端1%的佔有率

  • Let me give you another number to put that in perspective,

    讓我用另一項數據點明概貌

  • and this is a figure that was calculated in 2005

    這是2005年統計的數據

  • by Robert Reich,

    引自羅伯·賴許

  • the Secretary of Labor in the Clinton administration.

    他是柯林頓總統任內的勞工部長

  • Reich took the wealth of two admittedly very rich men,

    賴許得知兩位公認大富豪的財產:

  • Bill Gates and Warren Buffett,

    比爾蓋茲和巴菲特

  • and he found that it was equivalent to the wealth

    他發現他們的財富

  • of the bottom 40 percent of the U.S. population,

    等於美國底層40%的總合

  • 120 million people.

    1.2億人的總合

  • Now, as it happens,

    巧的是

  • Warren Buffett is not only himself a plutocrat,

    巴菲特不只是富豪

  • he is one of the most astute observers of that phenomenon,

    還能敏銳地觀察差距的激增

  • and he has his own favorite number.

    他也有最愛引用的數據

  • Buffett likes to point out that in 1992,

    巴菲特喜歡指出,1992年

  • the combined wealth of the people

    富比士雜誌

  • on the Forbes 400 list --

    富豪榜四百強

  • and this is the list of the 400 richest Americans --

    美國前四百名最有錢的人

  • was 300 billion dollars.

    財富總合是三千億美元

  • Just think about it.

    想想看

  • You didn't even need to be a billionaire

    財富低於十億美元

  • to get on that list in 1992.

    還能上1992年的富豪榜

  • Well, today, that figure has more than quintupled

    如今財富總合已成長了五倍以上

  • to 1.7 trillion,

    達到1.7兆美元

  • and I probably don't need to tell you

    我不說大概你們也知道

  • that we haven't seen anything similar happen

    財富激增的成果

  • to the middle class,

    中產階級未能分享

  • whose wealth has stagnated if not actually decreased.

    他們的財富沒變少就不錯了

  • So we're living in the age of the global plutocracy,

    我們處於全球富豪統治的年代

  • but we've been slow to notice it.

    卻遲遲不能察覺

  • One of the reasons, I think,

    我認為原因之一

  • is a sort of boiled frog phenomenon.

    是煮蛙效應

  • Changes which are slow and gradual

    緩慢又逐漸的改變

  • can be hard to notice

    有時很難察覺

  • even if their ultimate impact is quite dramatic.

    即使最終的衝擊很大

  • Think about what happened, after all, to the poor frog.

    想想看青蛙可憐的下場

  • But I think there's something else going on.

    但我認為原因不只如此

  • Talking about income inequality,

    談論所得分配不均的時候

  • even if you're not on the Forbes 400 list,

    即使不在富豪榜上的人

  • can make us feel uncomfortable.

    也會感到不自在

  • It feels less positive, less optimistic,

    覺得只是討論劃分大餅

  • to talk about how the pie is sliced

    而非思考把餅做大

  • than to think about how to make the pie bigger.

    比較不積極、不樂觀

  • And if you do happen to be on the Forbes 400 list,

    如果你正好名列富豪榜四百強

  • talking about income distribution,

    討論所得分配

  • and inevitably its cousin, income redistribution,

    以及難免涉及的所得再分配

  • can be downright threatening.

    可能會令你倍感威脅

  • So we're living in the age of surging income inequality,

    因此這是所得差距激增的年代

  • especially at the top.

    頂端階層尤其為最

  • What's driving it, and what can we do about it?

    起因為何?我們該怎麼辦?

  • One set of causes is political:

    有一類原因屬於政治層面:

  • lower taxes, deregulation, particularly of financial services,

    減稅、鬆綁,尤其是金融業鬆綁

  • privatization, weaker legal protections for trade unions,

    民營化、工會法律保障的削弱

  • all of these have contributed

    全都促成了

  • to more and more income going to the very, very top.

    最最頂端的所得日益增加

  • A lot of these political factors can be broadly lumped

    許多政治因素可以籠統歸類為

  • under the category of "crony capitalism,"

    「裙帶資本主義」

  • political changes that benefit a group

    這方面政治變化的受益者

  • of well-connected insiders

    是有裙帶關係的圈內人

  • but don't actually do much good for the rest of us.

    但一般大眾很少受惠

  • In practice, getting rid of crony capitalism

    實際上,要清除裙帶資本主義

  • is incredibly difficult.

    極為困難

  • Think of all the years reformers of various stripes

    想想看俄國歷年來各式的改革者

  • have tried to get rid of corruption in Russia, for instance,

    試圖根除貪腐的效果即為一例

  • or how hard it is to re-regulate the banks

    或想想看重新規範銀行有多難

  • even after the most profound financial crisis

    大蕭條以來最重大的金融危機過後

  • since the Great Depression,

    仍然難以實現

  • or even how difficult it is to get the big multinational companies,

    連要大型跨國企業繳稅都很難

  • including those whose motto might be "don't do evil,"

    包括座右銘為「不作惡」的企業

  • to pay taxes at a rate even approaching that

    他們不願意繳交

  • paid by the middle class.

    中產階級繳的稅率

  • But while getting rid of crony capitalism in practice

    但是要根除現行的裙帶資本主義

  • is really, really hard,

    儘管非常非常困難

  • at least intellectually, it's an easy problem.

    至少在理智上是容易的問題

  • After all, no one is actually in favor of crony capitalism.

    畢竟沒有人真的贊同裙帶資本主義

  • Indeed, this is one of those rare issues

    事實上這個議題

  • that unites the left and the right.

    罕見地團結了左右兩派

  • A critique of crony capitalism is as central

    批評裙帶資本主義

  • to the Tea Party as it is to Occupy Wall Street.

    對於茶黨和「佔領華爾街」同樣重要

  • But if crony capitalism is, intellectually at least,

    但如果裙帶資本主義,至少在理智上

  • the easy part of the problem,

    是容易處理的問題

  • things get trickier when you look at the economic drivers

    比較微妙的則是

  • of surging income inequality.

    所得差距激增的經濟驅動力

  • In and of themselves, these aren't too mysterious.

    這些驅動力本身並不那麼難懂

  • Globalization and the technology revolution,

    全球化和科技革命

  • the twin economic transformations

    這兩大經濟轉型

  • which are changing our lives

    改變了我們的生活

  • and transforming the global economy,

    轉變了全球經濟

  • are also powering the rise of the super-rich.

    也驅動了富豪的崛起

  • Just think about it.

    想想看

  • For the first time in history,

    這是史無前例的

  • if you are an energetic entrepreneur

    如果你是精力旺盛的創業家

  • with a brilliant new idea

    有絕妙的新點子

  • or a fantastic new product,

    或是極佳的新產品

  • you have almost instant, almost frictionless access

    你幾乎可以立刻順利地

  • to a global market of more than a billion people.

    進入超過十億人的全球市場

  • As a result, if you are very, very smart

    因此,如果你非常非常聰明

  • and very, very lucky,

    又非常非常幸運

  • you can get very, very rich

    你可以變得非常非常有錢

  • very, very quickly.

    有錢得非常非常迅速

  • The latest poster boy for this phenomenon

    這種現象的最新模範生

  • is David Karp.

    是大衛·卡普

  • The 26-year-old founder of Tumblr

    他26歲,是微博平台Tumblr的創辦人

  • recently sold his company to Yahoo

    最近才把公司賣給了雅虎

  • for 1.1 billion dollars.

    售價11億美元

  • Think about that for a minute:

    想想看

  • 1.1 billion dollars, 26 years old.

    11億美元,26歲!

  • It's easiest to see how the technology revolution

    誰都看得出來,科技革命和全球化

  • and globalization are creating this sort of superstar effect

    正在創造巨星效應

  • in highly visible fields,

    尤其是在耀眼的領域

  • like sports and entertainment.

    例如體育界和娛樂界

  • We can all watch how a fantastic athlete

    我們都可以看到最棒的運動員

  • or a fantastic performer can today leverage his or her skills

    或最棒的藝人如何運用其才能

  • across the global economy as never before.

    前所未有地跨足全球經濟

  • But today, that superstar effect

    但是現在的巨星效應

  • is happening across the entire economy.

    橫跨了全部經濟領域

  • We have superstar technologists.

    我們有巨星科技人員

  • We have superstar bankers.

    有巨星銀行家

  • We have superstar lawyers and superstar architects.

    有巨星律師和巨星建築師

  • There are superstar cooks

    有巨星廚師

  • and superstar farmers.

    還有巨星農夫

  • There are even, and this is my personal favorite example,

    甚至還有我最喜歡的例子:

  • superstar dentists,

    巨星牙醫

  • the most dazzling exemplar of whom

    其中最耀眼的

  • is Bernard Touati, the Frenchman who ministers

    是法國牙醫圖阿帝

  • to the smiles of fellow superstars

    他讓其他巨星能夠露齒一笑

  • like Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich

    客戶包括俄國的寡頭阿布拉莫維奇

  • or European-born American fashion designer

    以及歐裔美籍時裝設計師

  • Diane von Furstenberg.

    馮芙絲汀寶

  • But while it's pretty easy to see how globalization

    但雖然我們很容易看出

  • and the technology revolution

    全球化和科技革命

  • are creating this global plutocracy,

    創造全球富豪的方式

  • what's a lot harder is figuring out what to think about it.

    更難的是對其做出評斷

  • And that's because,

    原因是

  • in contrast with crony capitalism,

    二者和裙帶資本主義完全相反

  • so much of what globalization and the technology revolution

    全球化和科技革命的效果

  • have done is highly positive.

    大多非常正面

  • Let's start with technology.

    先談科技

  • I love the Internet. I love my mobile devices.

    我喜歡網路和行動裝置

  • I love the fact that they mean that

    因為這些科技

  • whoever chooses to will be able to watch this talk

    讓身在遠方想聽這場演講的人

  • far beyond this auditorium.

    不必來禮堂也聽得到

  • I'm even more of a fan of globalization.

    我更是全球化的粉絲

  • This is the transformation

    全球化帶來的轉變

  • which has lifted hundreds of millions

    使世界上數億赤貧的人

  • of the world's poorest people out of poverty

    擺脫了窮困

  • and into the middle class,

    進入中產階級

  • and if you happen to live in the rich part of the world,

    如果你正好住在富裕國家

  • it's made many new products affordable --

    全球化造就了許多實惠的新產品

  • who do you think built your iPhone? —

    想想看iPhone是誰製造的

  • and things that we've relied on for a long time much cheaper.

    我們一向依賴的物品也便宜多了

  • Think of your dishwasher or your t-shirt.

    想想洗碗機或是T恤

  • So what's not to like?

    所以全球化有什麼不好?

  • Well, a few things.

    還是有可挑剔之處

  • One of the things that worries me

    我擔心的問題之一

  • is how easily what you might call meritocratic plutocracy

    是所謂用人唯才的富豪統治

  • can become crony plutocracy.

    很容易變成裙帶富豪統治

  • Imagine you're a brilliant entrepreneur

    試想你是傑出的創業家

  • who has successfully sold that idea or that product

    已經成功地把新點子或產品

  • to the global billions

    銷售給全球數十億人

  • and become a billionaire in the process.

    並且因此成為億萬富翁

  • It gets tempting at that point

    此時你可能會忍不住

  • to use your economic nous

    利用你的經濟常識

  • to manipulate the rules of the global political economy

    操縱全球的政經規則

  • in your own favor.

    使自己受益

  • And that's no mere hypothetical example.

    這不只是假設

  • Think about Amazon, Apple, Google, Starbucks.

    想想亞馬遜、蘋果、谷歌、星巴克

  • These are among the world's most admired,

    都是全球最受敬重的

  • most beloved, most innovative companies.

    最受愛戴的、最創新的企業

  • They also happen to be particularly adept

    他們也正好特別善於

  • at working the international tax system

    利用國際稅收制度

  • so as to lower their tax bill very, very significantly.

    大大降低其賦稅

  • And why stop at just playing the global political

    而且何必僅限於操控

  • and economic system as it exists

    現存的全球政經體系

  • to your own maximum advantage?

    以獲得最大優勢?

  • Once you have the tremendous economic power

    一旦你像所得分配最頂端的人

  • that we're seeing at the very, very top of the income distribution

    擁有強大的經濟實力

  • and the political power that inevitably entails,

    以及少不了的政治勢力

  • it becomes tempting as well

    也會變得忍不住

  • to start trying to change the rules of the game

    開始改變遊戲規則

  • in your own favor.

    使自己受益

  • Again, this is no mere hypothetical.

    這也不只是假設

  • It's what the Russian oligarchs did

    俄國的寡頭就是這麼幹的

  • in creating the sale-of-the-century privatization

    透過世紀大拍賣進而民營化

  • of Russia's natural resources.

    俄國的自然資源

  • It's one way of describing what happened

    另一個例子是

  • with deregulation of the financial services

    美國和英國

  • in the U.S. and the U.K.

    鬆綁金融服務業的歷程

  • A second thing that worries me

    我擔心的第二個問題是

  • is how easily meritocratic plutocracy

    用人唯才的富豪統治

  • can become aristocracy.

    很容易變成貴族統治

  • One way of describing the plutocrats

    從一個角度看來

  • is as alpha geeks,

    富豪是技術達人

  • and they are people who are acutely aware

    這種人的見識敏銳

  • of how important highly sophisticated

    明白在今天的經濟環境裡

  • analytical and quantitative skills are in today's economy.

    高度複雜的分析及計量技能非常重要

  • That's why they are spending

    這就是為什麼他們正花費

  • unprecedented time and resources

    前所未有的時間和資源

  • educating their own children.

    教育自己的孩子

  • The middle class is spending more on schooling too,

    中產階級也在增加教育支出

  • but in the global educational arms race

    但是全球激烈的教育競賽

  • that starts at nursery school

    開始於托兒所

  • and ends at Harvard, Stanford or MIT,

    結束於哈佛、史丹福、麻省理工學院

  • the 99 percent is increasingly outgunned

    底層的99%日益落後

  • by the One Percent.

    遠不如頂端的1%

  • The result is something that economists Alan Krueger

    經濟學家克魯格與寇拉克

  • and Miles Corak call the Great Gatsby Curve.

    稱這種現象為蓋茨比曲線

  • As income inequality increases,

    隨著所得差距增加

  • social mobility decreases.

    社會流動性就會降低

  • The plutocracy may be a meritocracy,

    富豪統治或許是用人唯才

  • but increasingly you have to be born

    但你的出身愈發重要

  • on the top rung of the ladder to even take part in that race.

    如果不是頂端階層,連參賽資格都沒有

  • The third thing, and this is what worries me the most,

    第三個問題我最擔心

  • is the extent to which those same largely positive forces

    驅動全球富豪崛起的正面力量

  • which are driving the rise of the global plutocracy

    也以同樣的力道

  • also happen to be hollowing out the middle class

    正在掏空

  • in Western industrialized economies.

    西方工業國家的中產階級

  • Let's start with technology.

    我們先談科技

  • Those same forces that are creating billionaires

    創造億萬富翁的動力

  • are also devouring many traditional middle-class jobs.

    也吞噬了許多中產階級的傳統工作

  • When's the last time you used a travel agent?

    你多久沒跟旅行社職員打交道了?

  • And in contrast with the industrial revolution,

    和工業革命時代對比

  • the titans of our new economy

    新經濟的鉅亨

  • aren't creating that many new jobs