|【原文标题】Only Britain can beg for scraps from China and tell them how to behave|
guardian.co.uk, Tuesday 9 November 2010 20.00 GMT
How they beg the Chinese for money and yet hold your nose and tell them how awful they are? The Merchant of Venice dilemma is old as diplomacy. Today it clearly vexed the David Cameron on his much-hyped visit to Beijing. The British empire may be dead, but a nagging desire to rule the world, or at least tell it how to behave, is embedded in the genes of every British politician.
他们怎能一边从中国乞讨钱财，一边掩着鼻子告诉他们（中国人—镭射注）是多么的肮脏？威尼斯商人的困境 和外交一样古老。今天，在David Cameron去北京的路上，它清楚的摆在了他面前。大英帝国要完了，但关于世界秩序的唠叨，或至少是告诉中国人该如何做，仍然深深的嵌在每一个不列颠政 治家的基因里。
The prime minister is thus bombarded with advice on how to "dialogue but not lecture" – be critical but understanding, delicate but firm – when dealing with fiendish orientals. He must "explain where we differ" and inform his hosts that the British people strongly disapprove of their customs, such as jailing and hanging dissidents, suppressing free speech and putting leading artists under house arrest. This Cameron must do and yet not provoke the Chinese into showing him the door. Like Shakespeare's Antonio, he must not drive them to Shylock's sarcastic response: "You call'd me dog; and for these courtesies / I'll lend you thus much moneys?"
首相饱受诸如“对话但不要演讲”之类的建议的轰炸——要关键但易于理解，柔和但坚定——在和东方的魔王 打交道的时候。他必须“解释我们和他们有什么不同”，并告知他的东道主，不列颠人民非常不赞成他们的一些做法，比如监禁和处死持不同政见者，压制自由运 动，以及软禁先锋艺术家。这些都是Cameron必须要做的，而且他还不能惹中国人发火导致他被赶出门外。就像Shakespeare的Antonio， 他不能让他们做出Shylock式的讽刺回答：“You call'd me dog; and for these courtesies / I'll lend you thus much moneys?”（这句话需要熟悉《威尼斯商人》的朋友帮忙翻译并解释一下）
Diplomacy has long been an exercise in bluff concealing hypocrisy. The truth of the matter is that there is nothing we can do about China's internal affairs or how it treats its people. We have had no lien on the Chinese mainland since the Boxer rebellion. If we are offended by how communists behave we have a respectable option. We can have nothing to do with them. We need not trade with China. We can refuse visas to its citizens, and declare China a no-go country for British investment. At the very least we can treat China as a country with which we deal only when required to do so for the conduct of international relations.
外交很久以来就是关于虚张声势的虚伪的练习。事实真相是我们对中国的国际影响和它如何对待它的国民啥也 做不了。我们在义和团运动之后就不再在中国大陆有留置权（？）了。如果我们为共产党的行为冒犯，我们将有一个受人尊敬的选择。我们和他们没什么相干。我们 不需要和中国贸易。我们可以拒绝向它的公民发放签证，并宣布中国是一个不适合不列颠投资的地方。至少，我们可以将中国当做一个只在我们有国际关系上的需要 时才打交道的国家。
Yet money has trumped moral outrage. For a decade Britain has been obsequious towards China. Its media gasp in wonder at the Chinese economy. Business people eulogise the great leap forward of "red capitalism", praising the industry, the work ethic, the rate of growth, the export drive, the size of China's marketplace.
Now we are at it again. We lie panting on the floor, begging for scraps from China's table
I have been at such ridiculous masquerades in the past, and know how the Chinese respond. They first ignore everything and wait for what they regard as a spasm of western rudeness to pass. If pressed, they go into conclave and agree to forgive the foreigners; the lack of manners is doubtless the result of an Eton education. As for the subject itself, what on earth has it to do with Britain, or with Anglo-Chinese trade? The last time Britain meddled in such matters it resulted in opium wars.
我过去就曾在这一可笑的伪装中，而且知道中国人会如何反应。他们首先会忽略任何事情，等待这一被他们视 为西方的粗鲁抽风的行为过去。如果你施压，他们就会自己密谈后决定原谅这些外国人：这些无礼行为毫无疑问是伊顿公学的教育结果。附带的另一个问题是，英国 人，或者英美到底打算干什么？英国上次在这种情况下胡搞的结果就是鸦片战争。
Europe has long imported food from the Americas, minerals from Africa and manufactures from the Far East. Only Britain demands that such trade be dressed up in feel-good meetings and ethical decontamination certificates. Only Britain goes into trade negotiations wearing the cross of St George amid choruses of Hail Mary.
长期以来，欧洲的食品来自美国，金属来自非洲，工业制品来自远东。只有英国要求这样的贸易用来打扮让人 感觉良好的会见和道德的去污证书。只有英国会因为cross of St George amid choruses of Hail Mary的问题进行贸易谈判（？）。
One day perhaps China will have enough of this posturing and send a return delegation to London. Before discussing British lingerie exports, the Chinese will profess a "deep concern" at Britain's prison overcrowding, control orders, housing benefit reform and cap on student fees. They will "raise awareness" of Abu Hamza's detention, the persecution of asylum-seeking children and house flipping by MPs.
也许有一天中国会对这些故作姿态感到受够了，然后派一个代表团去伦敦。在讨论英国的女用内衣出口之前， 中国人会表达对于英国的监狱人满为患，社会控制（？），住房补贴改革和学费的“深切关注”。他们会对Abu Hamza的拘留，对保护动物的孩子的迫害和MPs的房屋翻转（？）“提高认识”。
Finally the delegation might beg advice on democracy. How can they arrange for seats in the houses of parliament to be sold to wealthy businessmen, or handed down from father to son? How could an election be fixed so the party that comes third finds itself in power? And perhaps Cameron could lend Beijing his admirable Mr Gove, to advise on the dictatorial centralisation of the Tibetan education service.
That feels better, the Chinese might say. How about those lingerie contracts?