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中国时间: 08:12 2016年12月09日星期五

何清涟: 邓氏时代虽盖棺,功业未到论定时——由傅高义介绍《邓小平时代》的数个“假如”说起


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哈佛大学傅高义教授的《邓小平时代》中文版最近问世。尽管邓小平的传记已有多种版本,包括邓家女公子邓榕的《我的父亲邓小平》这种“亲民版”在内,史料方面实在难有多少新发现。但因传主是世界级伟人,传记作者是曾经兼跨学政两界的大牌China Scholar,这两个因素本身就足够吸引读者眼球。最近傅高义先生因为中文版发行接受记者采访时的一些有关邓的评述,尤其是那一连串“假如”,已经让人充分感知他对传主的钟爱与崇拜之情。其中最引起争议与腹诽的就是他对邓小平在镇压“六四”天安门运动决策失误的辩解。

傅高义对中国现实政治和事理人情有自己的独到阐释。比如他认为在中国推动改革,“缺少威信不能做,缺少背景不能做,缺少经验不能做,都合起来才能做这么大的”事情,邓小平兼具三者,所以才能推动这场改变了中国的改革。这点我完全同意,以当时中共各元老的才具眼光及魄力而言,唯邓才有此胆识推动中国的改革,所以我一直说邓小平在中国同代领导人当中是走得最远的人。

傅对邓的理解也抓住了本质:“邓小平是个实用主义者,不是意识形态专家;和共产主义世界的许多领导人不同,他不认为有必要先成为一个理论家才能担当最高职位”,这话是中国知识界共识,但以下这句话比较出彩:“中共十四大对‘邓小平理论’的说法,旨在说明‘实用主义’恰恰正是最深刻的理论。”——从傅先生的论述来看,他对这种实用主义极为赞赏。我的看法是:这种实用主义最后在政治层面上形成了唯利是图、不讲原则的“国家机会主义”;在社会文化层面将中国人导向了金钱至上的市侩式追求,颠覆了中国社会的价值系统。尽管这种实用主义曾有效地引导中国走过了30来年的改革,但近年来,在中国“和平崛起过程中,中国政府想推广“软实力”,让全世界接受“中国模式”之时,才发现“经济利益至上”的中国价值观是如此缺乏吸引力,这不能不说是邓的实用主义“理论”带来的后果。

傅在《邓小平时代》一书中的另一个重点是试图构建邓小平与同时代领导人之间的关系图谱,并重新审视。他列举的人际关系重点主要是邓与陈云的关系。从有关邓陈关系的叙述来看,于英文读者或许有新意。但我想,既然是一本传记,以下关系无法回避,比如邓与胡、赵两任总书记的关系,包括邓以党内低阶身份两废总书记之举的权力来源是否正当,以及由他亲自指定的第三代领导人江泽民、隔代指定的胡锦涛任国家领导人是否合适等,都需要检讨。胡、赵现在获得的评价越来越高,邓小平与胡、赵的关系包含着邓的容人之量以及他对党内游戏规则的屡屡僭越;由他来挑选三、四代领导人,撇开这一行为的非制度化因素的正当性不论,还关系到一位政治伟人的识人之能。当考虑到胡锦涛平庸的治国之才成为2012年中国高层权斗的祸源,这点尤其重要。傅高义先生对邓小平的职位与权力不相称状态试图给出自己的理解分析。如果他的分析能为中国读者(而非英文世界的读者)广泛接受,倒也算得上一家之言。

对傅高义先生在接受多家传媒采访时,不断地用不同的“假如邓小平还活着,他不会……”这点,我实在有点不敢苟同。我猜想,这数个“假如”其实折射了傅高义先生对中国现任领导的治绩多少心存遗憾,所以他认为,若邓小平今天仍然在世并亲自处理政事,中国就不会有如此多的遗憾了。这种“假如”的推想多少与傅先生个人对邓小平能力的过高认识有关。邓小平的局限其实在1989年处理天安门事件中已经清晰可见,是邓出此下招,不仅改变了他与人民的关系,还将自己亲手铸就的改革列车引上了一条没有出路的轨道。面对如此历史机遇都采取了错误对策的伟人,又怎能指望在行将到来的网络时代,他能够如同50岁以下的人那样理解互联网对人类的意义,并在理解的基础上把握时势?更兼邓小平设定的两条底线——“第一是中国不能乱,第二体制不能动”,前一条底线成了中共今天“民主引发动乱论”的“理论”源头,并发展出了每年花数千亿维持的维稳体制;后一条底线被当今中国“九龙”之一的吴邦国先解释成“五不搞”,继而发展成“要用法律程序将党的意志变成国家意志”。这两条底线已经将一个到处奔突着地火的中国活生生地卡在了一道生死门坎之上,水火不济就有性命之忧——怎能说坚持“体制不能动”这条底线的邓小平就能处理好今天这么多源于体制的矛盾与问题?

2002年3月上旬,我曾受哈佛东亚法律中心之邀去该校演讲,期间曾至傅高义先生府上做客。通过长达两个半小时的谈话,傅先生对邓小平的激赏(混合着被掩饰得很好的崇拜)给我留下深刻印象。因此,如今他表示“西方世界低估了邓小平”,我并不感到意外。也因为感觉到这点,在那次谈话中,我特别强调:我个人不认为邓小平人生最大的败笔仅在于处理六四事件,他留下的政治遗产,即拒绝政治变革的“跛足改革”导致的权力市场化,才是最大的败笔。因为这一特点将改革导向了一个非常危险的方向,即使江泽民不需要面对权力市场化的全部恶果,他的继任也必须面对。傅高义先生认为,邓小平80年代确实是容忍了轻度腐败,但今天贪腐这么严重,“邓小平若在世,绝不会坐视贪官污吏横行,这也是中共当局必须正视的问题”。我却认为邓小平无法挣开他为自己及他的党所打造的枷锁:政府充当资源分配者、经济游戏规则的制定者与参赛者。任何政府只要同时有这三种权力,就无法制止腐败。

在“记住邓小平”一节中,傅高义写道:“假如中国人要感谢某一个领导人改善了他们的日常生活,这个人就是邓小平。在为改善如此多的人民的生活做出的贡献方面,20世纪是否还有其他领袖能够与他相比?”这个“假如”的出现,与傅高义采访对象中没有社会底层以及接近了解底层的人士有关。中国的转型还处在“现在进行时”,推动中国转型的巨人的评价会因人而异,因时而异。所以对邓小平毕生功业,还未到“盖棺论定”之时。更何况,在胡锦涛第二个任期内出现的种种否定改革的政治动向已经非常明显。因为中国人不是一个整体,不是中国官方口中常说的集体名词“全体人民”。现实中,中国人民因为利益分化早分化成各个阶层,各有各的利益诉求,只是这些诉求被当局严厉压制而已。比如近年来怀念毛泽东时代的人群当中,除了一些社会底层成员之外,还有为数不少的“红二代”,薄熙来的“唱红打黑”,就是顺应了这种思潮。而刘源等人倡导要回到新民主主义路线,至少也算得上一种对邓小平改革路线的修正尝试。江、胡两代领导人尤其是胡,也许内心对毛的看法会不同于邓,但在治国方略上,却绝对是对邓小平开创的改革格局(只发展经济,拒绝政治体制改革)的忠实执行者,如果中国政府不控制言论,上述两类人对现实的不满,一定会溯源至邓氏改革路线,只不过批判的维度与我的批判不同:我的批判是造成中国现状的根源是中共拒绝政治体制改革,与毛时代诀别不彻底;后者批判现实之恶,认为一切缘于邓氏改革放弃了毛的革命路线。

这本书对邓多溢美之辞,英文版问世即引发诸多疑问,比如作者对邓所行之事总站在传主立场加以理解并赋予同情(包括邓打击知识分子、压制批评意见),对中国的一切都从党的实用立场考虑,缺乏人权方面的关怀。如果这本书在2008年以前发表,或者能起到傅高义期望的“教育美国公众”重新认识邓小平的作用。可以预期,今年发布的中文版在中国朝野能够得到的好评,一定远低于作者与出版社所预期的。

邓小平的一生功业,与中国命运有关,更与中国共产党的前途及命运有关。因此,我认为,傅著《邓小平时代》固然是一本不可忽视的英文传记,但其对邓小平的结论却还不能视为盖棺之定论,邓小平的毕生功业到底有多伟大,将由中国未来的历史做证。

On Vogel’s book about Deng Xiaoping
Though Deng’s era is over, his legacy is yet to be concluded

Written by He Qinglian on June 18, 2012
(Translated by kRiZcPEc)

http://hqlenglish.blogspot.com/2012/06/on-vogels-book-about-deng-xiaoping.html

The Chinese version of Deng Xiaoping and the transformation of China, written by Ezra F. Vogel, a professor at Harvard University, has recently been available. Although there are already various versions of biographies of Deng Xiaoping, including My father Deng Xiaoping by Deng Rong “Maomao”, and hardly any breakthrough could be achieved in terms of historical data, this book by Vogel is about a world class great man, and the author is a renowned China scholar who was once influential both in the politics and academic circles. These two factors per se are sufficient to attract the eyeballs of readers.

In his recent interviews following the publication of the Chinese version of his book, Mr. Vogel made comments about Deng Xiaoping and gave a series of “if” that showed clearly how much he worshiped Deng. The most controversial and the hardest not to disagree was his defense for Deng Xiaoping’s decision errors in squelching the “June-4th” Tiananmen movement.

Ezra F. Vogel has his own unique and insightful interpretations of China’s realpolitik and its affairs. For example, he concluded that reform in China was a thing so big that it took a person with a combination of authority, background, and experience to carry out. Deng was a man with all three of these and that was why he could initiate the reform that transformed China. I completely agree with his observation on this. Judging from the vision, caliber and strength of the elders of the CPC at that time, Deng was the only one with the courage needed to push for reform in China. That is why I have been saying that compared with other Chinese leaders of his contemporaries, Deng was the person who went the farthest.

Mr. Vogel’s understanding of Deng Xiaoping had also grasped the essence: “Deng was a pragmatist, not a specialist in ideology. Unlike many other leaders of the Communist world, Deng did not think that becoming a theorist was a prerequisite for anyone who aspired to assume the highest office”. This has also been the consensus of the Chinese intellectuals. The following remark, however, is more of his own idea: “The remarks made about ‘Deng Xiaoping’s theory’ by the 14th National Congress of the CPC aimed to illustrate that ‘pragmatism’ is precisely the most profound theory.”

Judging from his comments, Mr. Vogel thought very highly of this pragmatism. My opinion is that at the political level, this very type of pragmatism gave rise to mercenary and unscrupulous “state opportunism”; at the sociocultural level, it directed the Chinese people to the philistine pursuit of money above all else and overturned the value system of the Chinese society.

This pragmatism had effectively led China through the thirty years of reform. Yet as China achieved its “peaceful rise” in recent years, the Chinese government intended to publicize the country’s “soft power” and make the world accept the “China model”, only to realize that the Chinese value— “economic interests above everything else”—is so unattractive. This cannot but say is the consequence of Deng’s pragmatism “theory”.

The other focal point of Deng Xiaoping and the transformation of China is the attempt to construe the relationship map of Deng Xiaoping and his contemporary leaders, and re-examines it. The key relationship Mr. Vogel listed in his book is predominantly that of Deng Xiaoping and Chen Yun.

The narration concerning the relationship between Deng Xiaoping and Chen Yun might present some novelty to English readers. But I think that after all, being a biography, this book could not possibly evade the following: the relationship between Deng Xiaoping and the two premiers Hu Yaobang and Zhao Ziyang; whether or not the source of power with which Deng, a low-ranking member of the CPC, twice dismissed the Party’s General Secretary was justifiable; whether or not it was appropriate for Deng to personally appoint Jiang Zemin as the third generation leader, and specified that Hu Jintao was to become leader of the fourth generation and others. All these need to be examined.

The evaluation Hu Yaobang and Zhao Ziyang received is becoming higher these days. The relationship between Deng Xiaoping, Hu Yaobang and Zhao Ziyang involved Deng’s tolerance and his repeated transgressions of the rules of the game within the Party. The fact that he handpicked the leaders of the third and the fourth generations related to, the legitimacy of the non-institutional factor of this action aside, the ability of a great political figure to know [the capability of] others. This is all the more important when Hu Jintao’s mediocre statecraft became the curse of high-level power struggle in China in 2012. Mr. Vogel attempted to analyze and explain Deng’s having greater power than his position would provide him. If his analysis could be widely accepted by readers in China (and not readers in the English-speaking world), then his viewpoints could be said to have some merits.

During interviews, Mr. Vogel stated several times that “if Deng Xiaoping were still alive today, he would not…” This is a viewpoint that I really find difficult to agree. I guess these several “ifs” more or less reflected Mr. Vogel’s disappointment with the current Chinese leaders. And he therefore figured that if Deng Xiaoping were still alive, and personally took charge of the government affairs, there would be much fewer regrets in China today. This hypothesis is more or less related to Mr. Vogel’s overestimation of Deng Xiaoping’s ability.

In fact, the limits of Deng’s ability had been manifested clearly in his handling of the Tiananmen incident in 1989. By resorting to such a wrong move, Deng had not only changed the relationship between himself and the people, but also directed the train of reform that he personally forged onto a rail that had no way out. How could a great man who made the wrong response even in the face of such a rare historic opportunity be expected to grasp the significance the Internet has for humankind like people age below 50 do, and seize the opportunity based on that understanding in the impending age of the network?

And there are the two principles laid down by Deng Xiaoping: “China must not allow chaos”; and “the [political] system must not change”. The first principle became the source of the CPC “theory” that suggests “democracy triggers chaos”, and evolved into the stability maintenance system that costs hundreds of billions each year; the second one was elaborated by Wu Bangguo, one of the “Nine Dragons” of China today as the “five no’s” and “[to] turn the will of the Party into that of the state through legal procedures”. These two principles had already pinned China, a country which potential instances of unrest are everywhere, down on a life-or-death trap, and would cause grave consequences when things go wrong. How could Deng Xiaoping, who insisted that “the [political] system must not change”, be expected to properly address the many conflicts and problems today that stem from the system itself?

In early March 2002, I was invited by East Asian Legal Studies Center of Harvard to deliver a speech. During that time, I paid a visit to Mr. Vogel at his house. Through a conversation that lasted two and a half hours, I was impressed by Mr. Vogel’s appreciation (mixed with well-disguised worship) of Deng Xiaoping. Therefore, I am not surprised that he said today that “the West has underestimated Deng Xiaoping.

It was also because I sensed this sentiment that I stressed specifically in that conversation that: I personally do not think the biggest flaw of Deng Xiaoping in his life was only his handling of the June-4th incident. Rather, the biggest flaw of Deng was the political legacy that he left behind, the “lame reform” that excluded political reform and led to the marketization of power. Because this characteristic had steered reform to a very dangerous direction, “even if Jiang Zemin does not have to face all of the consequences of the marketization of power, his successors would undoubtedly have to”.

Mr. Vogel thought that with corruption being so pervasive a problem today that the CPC authorities must not evade it, “Deng Xiaoping would definitely not sit back and do nothing if he were still alive today” even though he did tolerate corruption at a lighter degree in 1980s. In my opinion, however, Deng Xiaoping would not be able to break free from the shackle that he created for himself and the CPC: the government acts as the resource allocator, the rule-maker of the game of economy and a game-player. Whatever government that has in hand these three types of power could in no way prevent corruption.

In the chapter “Deng’s Place in History”, Mr. Vogel wrote that if the Chinese people were to thank one leader for improvement in their daily life, the person they should thank would be Deng Xiaoping. He also questioned if there are any other leaders of 20th century who could match him when it comes to the contributions to improving the lives of so many people.

This “if” would emerge is a result of Mr. Vogel not having interviewed the bottom of society or gotten close to those people or understood them. Given that China is still in the middle of transition, those giants who pushed for that transition would receive comments that differ between individuals and vary from time to time. Therefore, it is not yet time to conclude Deng’s place in history. Moreover, during Hu Jintao’s second term, the various political trends that reject reform have become pretty obvious. The Chinese people is not just a single mass, they are not like what the Chinese officials tend to refer to as the collective noun of “the entire nation”. In reality, the Chinese people have long differentiate into the various strata because of varied interests. Each of these strata have their own interest demand, only that the authorities have strictly suppressed them. For instance, among the crowd that miss the Mao era are, apart from members at the bottom of society, quite a few “red second generation”. Bo Xilai’s campaigns in Chongqing were an act of conform to this trend of thought. As for the line of new democracy that Liu Yuan and others call to return to could at least be seen as an attempt to revise Deng Xiaoping’s path of reform.

While Jiang Zemin and Hu Jintao—the latter in particular—might not share Deng’s view of Mao, they are nonetheless faithful implementers of Deng Xiaoping’s reform framework which develop only the economy and dismiss political system reform. If the Chinese government does not control speech, the two types of people mentioned above would surely trace the origin of their dissatisfaction back to the reform initiated by Deng Xiaoping. However, they criticize Deng’s reform from a perspective that differ from my own. What I criticize is the CPC refusal to reform the political system and the incomplete separation from Mao era, both are the root causes of current problems in China; they, on the other hand, denounce the vices of reality, which they deem to have stemmed from Deng’s route of reform and the abandonment of Mao’s route of revolution.

Laden with praises for Deng Xiaoping, this book drew many questions right from its publication. For instance, Mr. Vogel invariably stepped into Deng’s shoes, tried to understand his actions—crack down on intellectuals, repress criticism—and sympathized with him. He saw everything about China from the pragmatic viewpoints of the CPC and showed no concern for human rights issues. If this book were published before 2008, it might have been able to serve Mr. Vogel’s purpose of educating the U.S. public to renew their understanding of Deng Xiaoping. But now it could be expected that the Chinese version of the book that became available this year would receive far fewer favorable comments than the author and the publishing house have hoped.

The accomplishments Deng Xiaoping had made in his lifetime was relevant to the destiny of China; all the more so, those were related to the prospect and destiny of the CPC. Hence, my opinion on that book is that while it is a biography that must not to be overlooked, its conclusion of Deng Xiaoping could not be seen as a “set-in-stone” evaluation yet. How great actually had Deng Xiaoping accomplished in his lifetime shall have to be attested by the future history of China.
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