[2008.01.24]Salty shepherds 海上守护者



Salty shepherds


Jan 24th 2008 | SYDNEY
From The Economist print edition

A row between Australia and Japan



THE Southern Ocean is usually one of the world’s loneliest shipping lanes.This month it has turned into an unseemly battleground over a bid byAustralia’s government and various environmental groups to stop Japan huntingand slaughtering whales. Japan aims to kill more than 900 minke and 50 finwhales from a region bordering Antarctica by mid-April. It claims the hunt isfor scientific research; its critics say this is a brazen front for acommercial whale-meat harvest. As images of the protesters’ antics inflameanti-Japanese feeling in Australia, the clash is also threatening the stabilityof one of Australia’s strongest regional ties.


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[2006.09.21][China]Face value: China’s pied piper中国网络先锋

Face value

China’s pied piper
Sep 21st 2006
From The Economist print edition

Jack Ma is attracting a following among entrepreneurs in China and internet companies worldwide

ON A rainy weekend this month 10,000 businessmen, hobby traders and “netheads” gathered in Hangzhou, a pretty Chinese city near Shanghai, to talk about e-commerce. Most went to meet and swap tips with other online traders. All came to the “Alifest” to sit at the feet of Jack Ma, a pixie-sized, boyish 42-year-old who is the founder of Alibaba, an e-commerce firm, and is regarded as the godfather of the internet in China. In a country where businessmen are viewed with suspicion, his popularity is unusual. When he was invited recently to speak in Beijing’s Great Hall of the People, Mr Ma needed six bodyguards to escape a mob of online traders waiting outside to give him a hug.
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[2007.3.15]Evidence-based ethics: Logical endings

Evidence-based ethics

Logical endings

Mar 15th 2007
From The Economist print edition

Computers may soon be better than kin at predicting the wishes of the dying

IN 1947 a psychologist called Theodore Sarbin made a controversial suggestion to a medical conference. He proposed that a doctor is really just a machine whose purpose is to make actuarial judgments about the best treatment for a patient. And not a very good machine, at that, for Sarbin also suggested that medicine would benefit if “we could replace [the doctor’s] eyes and brain with a Hollerith machine”.
在1947年的一次医学大会上,心理学家西奥多•沙宾(Theodore Sarbin)的意见引起了争论。他提出,医生不过是一台机器,其目的是为了对患者获得最优治疗方案作出保险精算的判断,而且还不是一台很好的机器。沙宾指出,如果“我们能够用一台霍勒里斯机器换掉(医生的)眼睛和大脑”,医学才会让人获益。

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[2007.3.8]Cancer screening: Seeing is not always relieving

Seeing is not always relieving

Mar 8th 2007
From The Economist print edition
Screening for lung cancer may do more harm than good

SOMETIMES you can know too much. The aim of screening healthy people for cancer is to discover tumours when they are small and treatable. It sounds laudable and often it is. But it sometimes leads to unnecessary treatment. The body has a battery of mechanisms for stopping small tumours from becoming large ones. Treating those that would have been suppressed anyway does no good and can often be harmful.

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[2006.07.13][Special]Russia: Richer, bolder—and sliding back


  In translating this lengthy article, The author received formidable help and support from many pals on the forum, hence the author would like to take this opportunity to express his sincere gratitude to them. They have generously offered valuable advice by which the author’s burden has been shouldered and from which his inspiration stems. In particular, the author wants to thank nEo, Zhuanggong, Epicure, Sparker,to name just a few. He benefits a great deal from them no matter when, in the past, at present or even in future. Any inappropriate part in his translation must not be to blame on them, but on the author himself. On the contrary, considering that they unselfishly offer their backup when they themselves have their hands full, any gratefulness rendered them should not be considered as flattery.
  For those who comment on this banal work, the author hopes as ever that they speek freely and present their opinions, positions and critique regarding this translation without any reservation . That is the same thing with which the author is once preoccupied.
  Thanks again to those pals for taking their precious time to read the author’s work.

Special Report


Richer, bolder—and sliding back

Jul 13th 2006 | NALCHIK
From The Economist print edition

The G8 leaders meeting in St Petersburg this weekend will find Vladimir Putin’s Russia assertive, oil-fired and authoritarian
本周在圣彼德堡举行的G8首脑会晤将昭示出弗拉基米尔·普京统治下的俄罗斯是个刚愎自用、石油驱动和独裁专制 [1] 的国度

  SHOES from Lobb’s, the poshest boot-maker in London, were not available in Yekaterinburg until Igor Markin opened his shop last year. It sits on the edge of a park that once belonged to the tsars, not far from where the last of them was murdered. Because of its defence industries, Yekaterinburg was a closed city for much of the Soviet era. In the 1990s it was notorious, even by Russian standards, for its gangsters. These days, says Mr Markin, Yekaterinburg’s highest-rollers often spend $50,000 or more in his store.
  总部位于伦敦的制靴商Lobb’s [2] ,是专做奢侈型鞋子的品牌,过去从未在俄罗斯的叶卡特琳堡开辟销路(或者可以翻成过去从未涉足俄罗斯的叶卡特琳堡的市场),直到伊格尔·马尔金(Igor Markin)去年在该市开店,这种局面才得以改观。该店坐落在一家公园的周边地带,过去这里是属于罗曼诺夫家族(沙皇家族)的领地,离末代沙皇被谋杀的地点不远。由于叶卡特琳堡的国防工业是其一大特色,因此在苏联时期的大半岁月中该城与外界接触寥寥。上世纪90年代,即便是按照俄罗斯的标准来看,该城也因为其猖獗的黑帮活动而名声狼籍。据马尔金称,如今叶卡特琳堡的大款们经常来他的店消费,而且出手阔绰,营业额时常能超过50,000美圆。

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[2006.10.08][Leaders]The Search for Talent

The Search for Talent

The world’s most valuable commodity is getting harder to find

THESE are heady days for most companies. Profits are up. Capital is footloose and fancy-free. Trade unions are getting weaker. India and China are adding billions of new cheap workers and consumers to the world economy. This week the Dow Jones Industrial Average hit a new high.

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[2005.05.19]Zhang chunqiao张春桥

Obituary讣告Zhang Chunqiao 张春桥
May 19th 2005
From The Economist print edition
Zhang Chunqiao, a member of the Gang of Four, died on April 21st, aged 88

IT TOOK almost three weeks for China’s state news agency to announce the death of Zhang Chunqiao. When it came, a mere four sentences described his career as “one of the culprits of the Lin Bao and Jiang Qing Counter-revolutionary Clique”. And that, indeed, was how most Chinese had last seen him, at his televised show-trial in 1981. Manacled, rumpled, with his spectacles askew, he had looked both pathetic and desperate. And no wonder. With the other members of the Gang of Four, Mao Zedong’s chief henchmen (only one of whom now survives), he had faced charges of ultimate responsibility for the persecution of 729,511 people, and the deaths of 34,800 of them, during the Cultural Revolution of 1966-76.

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[2006.09.09] Fear of flying:Welcome aboard

Fear of flying飞行恐惧

Welcome aboard
Sep 7th 2006
From The Economist print edition

In-flight announcements are not entirely truthful. What might an honest one sound like? 


“GOOD morning, ladies and gentlemen. We are delighted to welcome you aboard Veritas Airways, the airline that tells it like it is. Please ensure that your seat belt is fastened, your seat back is upright and your tray-table is stowed. At Veritas Airways, your safety is our first priority. Actually, that is not quite true: if it were, our seats would be rear-facing, like those in military aircraft, since they are safer in the event of an emergency landing. But then hardly anybody would buy our tickets and we would go bust.


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[2008.01.31]China’s fear of inflation闻“胀”色变

China’s fear of inflation
Jan  31st 2008
From the Economist Intelligence Unit ViewsWire

Efforts to cool the economy may undo crucial reforms进退维谷!

Faced with rising consumer prices and signs of runaway growth, the Chinese Communist Party in November issued a strongly worded statement vowing to stem inflation and slow investment. At the time market players paid scant attention to it. But as the State Council’s increasingly stringent policies show no signs of letting up even in the face of global financial turmoil, players in China’s property and equity markets are at last waking up to the harsher reality. In recent weeks both housing and stock prices have started to retreat from their irrationally exuberant highs. Chinese policymakers, however, should be careful of what they wish for. Falling asset prices could bring back an old problem that many thought had been conquered: bad debts in the banking system. Meanwhile, inflation is reviving throwback elements of state economic planning.

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[2006.07.27] The future of globalization

Trade talks collapse

The future of globalization

Jul 27th 2006
From The Economist print edition

The wrecking of the world trade talks was senseless and short-sighted

WHEN the Middle East is ablaze, oil prices near record highs, the American economy cooling and the climate warming, it is hard to get excited about the beaching of trade talks. After all, globalisation is unstoppable: so what if a few technocrats in Switzerland packed up their briefcases and went home?

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