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罗斯福于1933年的第一次炉边谈话

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罗斯福于1933年的第一次炉边谈话 英文版

First Fireside Chat

12 March, 1933, Washington D.C.

My friends,

I want to talk for a few minutes with the people of the United States about banking—to talk with the comparatively few who understand the mechanics of banking, but more particularly with the overwhelming majority of you who use banks for the making of deposits and the drawing of checks.

I want to tell you what has been done in the last few days, and why it was done, and what the next steps are going to be. I recognize that the many proclamations from State capitols and from Washington, the legislation, the Treasury regulations, and so forth, couched for the most part in banking and legal terms, ought to be explained for the benefit of the average citizen. I owe this, in particular, because of the fortitude and the good temper with which everybody has accepted the inconvenience and hardships of the banking holiday. And I know that when you understand what we in Washington have been about, I shall continue to have your cooperation as fully as I have had your sympathy and your help during the past week.

First of all, let me state the simple fact that when you deposit money in a bank, the bank does not put the money into a safe deposit vault. It invests your money in many different forms of credit— in bonds, in commercial paper, in mortgages and in many other kinds of loans. In other words, the bank puts your money to work to keep the wheels of industry and of agriculture turning around. A comparatively small part of the money that you put into the bank is kept in currency—an amount which in normal times is wholly sufficient to cover the cash needs of the average citizen. In other words, the total amount of all the currency in the country is only a comparatively small proportion of the total deposits in all the banks of the country.

What, then, happened during the last few days of February and the first few days of March? Because of undermined confidence on the part of the public, there was a general rush by a large portion of our population to turn bank deposits into currency or gold—a rush so great that the soundest banks couldn’t get enough currency to meet the demand. The reason for this was that on the spur of the moment it was, of course, impossible to sell perfectly sound assets of a bank and convert them into cash, except at panic prices far below their real value. By the afternoon of March third, a week ago last Friday scarcely a bank in the country was open to do business. Proclamations closing them, in whole or in part, had been issued by the Governors in almost all the states. It was then that I issued the proclamation providing for the national bank holiday, and this was the first step in the Government’s reconstruction of our financial and economic fabric.

The second step, last Thursday, was the legislation promptly and patriotically passed by the Congress confirming my proclamation and broadening my powers so that it became possible in view of the requirement of time to extend the holiday and lift the ban of that holiday gradually in the days to come. This law also gave authority to develop a program of rehabilitation of our banking facilities. And I want to tell our citizens in every part of the Nation that the national Congress—Republicans and Democrats alike—showed by this action a devotion to public welfare and a realization of the emergency and the necessity for speed that it is difficult to match in all our history.

The third stage has been the series of regulations permitting the banks to continue their functions to take care of the distribution of food and household necessities and the payment of payrolls.

This bank holiday, while resulting in many cases in great inconvenience, is affording us the opportunity to supply the currency necessary to meet the situation. Remember that no sound bank is a dollar worse off than it was when it closed its doors last week. Neither is any bank which may turn out not to be in a position for immediate opening. The new law allows the twelve Federal Reserve Banks to issue additional currency on good assets and thus the banks that reopen will be able to meet every legitimate call. The new currency is being sent out by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing in large volume to every part of the country. It is sound currency because it is backed by actual, good assets.

Another question you will ask is this: Why are all the banks not to be reopened at the same time? The answer is simple and I know you will understand it: Your Government does not intend that the history of the past few years shall be repeated. We do not want and will not have another epidemic of bank failures.

As a result, we start tomorrow, Monday, with the opening of banks in the twelve Federal Reserve Bank cities—those banks, which on first examination by the Treasury, have already been found to be all right. That will be followed on Tuesday by the resumption of all other functions by banks already found to be sound in cities where there are recognized clearing houses. That means about two hundred and fifty cities of the United States. In other words, we are moving as fast as the mechanics of the situation will allow us. On Wednesday and succeeding days, banks in smaller places all through the country will resume business, subject, of course, to the Government’s physical ability to complete its survey.

It is necessary that the reopening of banks be extended over a period in order to permit the banks to make applications for the necessary loans, to obtain currency needed to meet their requirements, and to enable the Government to make common sense checkups. Please let me make it clear to you that if your bank does not open the first day you are by no means justified in believing that it will not open. A bank that opens on one of the subsequent days is in exactly the same status as the bank that opens tomorrow.

I know that many people are worrying about State banks that are not members of the Federal Reserve System. There is no occasion for that worry. These banks can and will receive assistance from member banks and from the Reconstruction Finance Corporation. And, of course, they are under the immediate control of the State banking authorities. These State banks are following the same course as the National banks except that they get their licenses to resume business from the State authorities, and these authorities have been asked by the Secretary of the Treasury to permit their good banks to open up on the same schedule as the national banks. And so I am confident that the State Banking Departments will be as careful as the national Government in the policy relating to the opening of banks and will follow the same broad theory.

It is possible that when the banks resume a very few people who have not recovered from their fear may again begin withdrawals. Let me make it clear to you that the banks will take care of all needs, except, of course, the hysterical demands of hoarders, and it is my belief that hoarding during the past week has become an exceedingly unfashionable pastime in every part of our nation. It needs no prophet to tell you that when the people find that they can get their money—that they can get it when they want it for all legitimate purposes—the phantom of fear will soon be laid. People will again be glad to have their money where it will be safely taken care of and where they can use it conveniently at any time. I can assure you, my friends, that it is safer to keep your money in a reopened bank than it is to keep it under the mattress.

The success of our whole national program depends, of course, on the cooperation of the public—on its intelligent support and its use of a reliable system.

Remember that the essential accomplishment of the new legislation is that it makes it possible for banks more readily to convert their assets into cash than was the case before. More liberal provision has been made for banks to borrow on these assets at the Reserve Banks and more liberal provision has also been made for issuing currency on the security of these good assets. This currency is not fiat currency. It is issued only on adequate security, and every good bank has an abundance of such security.

One more point before I close. There will be, of course, some banks unable to reopen without being reorganized. The new law allows the Government to assist in making these reorganizations quickly and effectively and even allows the Government to subscribe to at least a part of any new capital that may be required.

I hope you can see, my friends, from this essential recital of what your Government is doing that there is nothing complex, nothing radical in the process.

We have had a bad banking situation. Some of our bankers had shown themselves either incompetent or dishonest in their handling of the people’s funds. They had used the money entrusted to them in speculations and unwise loans. This was, of course, not true in the vast majority of our banks, but it was true in enough of them to shock the people of the United States, for a time, into a sense of insecurity and to put them into a frame of mind where they did not differentiate, but seemed to assume that the acts of a comparative few had tainted them all. And so it became the Government’s job to straighten out this situation and do it as quickly as possible. And that job is being performed.

I do not promise you that every bank will be reopened or that individual losses will not be suffered, but there will be no losses that possibly could be avoided; and there would have been more and greater losses had we continued to drift. I can even promise you salvation for some, at least, of the sorely presses banks. We shall be engaged not merely in reopening sound banks but in the creation of more sound banks through reorganization.

It has been wonderful to me to catch the note of confidence from all over the country. I can never be sufficiently grateful to the people for the loyal support that they have given me in their acceptance of the judgment that has dictated our course, even though all our processes may not have seemed clear to them.

After all, there is an element in the readjustment of our financial system more important than currency, more important than gold, and that is the confidence of the people themselves. Confidence and courage are the essentials of success in carrying out our plan. You people must have faith; you must not be stampeded by rumors or guesses. Let us unite in banishing fear. We have provided the machinery to restore our financial system, and it is up to you to support and make it work.

It is your problem, my friends, your problem no less than it is mine.

Together we cannot fail.

罗斯福于1933年的第一次炉边谈话 中文版

第一次炉边谈话

1933年3月12日,华盛顿特区

朋友们:

我想花几分钟时间同合众国的人民谈谈银行的情况。只有很少一部分人了解银行的运行机制,而绝大多数人则把银行用作存款和取款的地方。

我要告诉大家,过去这些天我们都做了什么,为什么要做这些事情,以及我们的下一步计划是什么。我认识到,国会和华盛顿发出的许多公告、立法、财政部法规等,大部分内容都是用银行业和法律术语表述的,为了普通公民的利益应当加以解释。我对此要特别表示感谢,因为每个人都坚定而心平气和地接受了银行休假造成的不便和困难。我知道,当大家理解了我们在华盛顿所做的一切后,我将会得到大家的全力合作,如同你们在过去的这个星期里给予我们的同情和帮助一样。

首先,我要指出一个简单的事实:你们把钱存进银行,银行并不是把它锁在保险库里了事,而是用来通过各种不同的信贷方式进行投资,比如买债券、商业票据、抵押贷款等。换句话说,银行让你们的钱发挥作用,好使整个机构运转起来。你们存入银行的钱只有很小一部分是以货币形式保存的,其数量在平时完全能够满足普通公民的现金需要。换句话说,国家所有货币的总量仅仅是所有银行全部存款中很小的一部分。

那么,二月末三月初这些日子里发生了什么事情呢?由于公众的信心下降,很多人冲进银行,将银行的存款兑换成黄金。取款的人非常之多,以至于最可靠的银行也不能获得足够的现金以满足需要。当然,其中的原因是,在人们一时冲动的时刻,不可能出售银行的完全可靠的资产,除非将这些资产以远低于其真实价值的恐慌价格变成现金。到3月3日下午时,也就是一周前的星期五下午,美国几乎所有银行都关门歇业了。差不多所有州的州长都发布了暂时全部或部分关闭这些银行的公告。正是那时候,我发布了公告,规定全国的银行休假。这也是联邦政府为重建我们的金融与经济大厦所采取的第一步。

第二步是在上周四国会迅速而充满爱国心地通过立法,确认了我的公告,并扩大了我的权力,以便联邦政府根据时间需要延长假期和逐渐解除假期。该项法律还授权制定一项复原我们的银行业务的计划。我要对全国各地的公民们说的是,国会包括共和党人和民主党人,通过此次行动表明:他们热衷公共事业,认识到我国正处于非常时刻,必须快速采取行动。这在我国的历史上是罕见的。

第三步是通过了一系列法规,准许各家银行继续履行其职能,解决食品和生活必需品的销售以及工资的支付。

这次银行休假尽管在许多方面造成诸多不便,但是给我们提供了供应足够多的现金以应对当前形势的机会,各家银行上个星期一关门放假时,几乎都是一贫如洗。哪家银行都没做好立即开业的准备。新法律允许十二家联邦储备银行以优质资产为基础发行更多的货币。这样,重新开业的银行就能够满足所有合理要求。雕版印刷局正在全国各地大量发行新货币。这是健康的货币,因为它有真实而优质的资产做后盾。

大家会问的另一个问题是:为什么不是所有银行同时重新恢复营业呢?答案很简单。你们的联邦政府不想让过去几年的历史重演。我们不想要也将不会看到另外一次银行倒闭大流行了。

因此,我们明天也就是从星期一开始,十二家联邦储备银行所在城市的各家银行将开门营业。这些银行在财政部首轮审查中表明状态良好。紧接着在星期二,已经表明可靠的银行将在拥有票据交易所的各城市恢复其全部功能。这意味着合众国的约250个城市位列其中。星期三及随后几天,全国较小地方的银行将会重新开始营业,当然,具体时间将依联邦政府完成其调查的情形而定。

银行重新开业的时间有必要延长一个时期,以便准许这些银行申请必需的贷款,获得满足其要求的货币,并使联邦政府能够进行常规审查。大家要清楚,如果你们的银行在第一天没有恢复营业,那么,大家绝不能认为这家银行将不会开业了。在后续时间内任何一天复业的银行,其地位与明天恢复营业的银行完全一样。

我知道许多人担心的是各州的银行,而不是联邦储备体系成员银行的状况。这些银行能够并将获得成员银行和复兴金融公司的帮助。这些银行的运作方式同全国性银行一样,只是它们从州的权力部门获得重新营业的许可证。财政部长已要求这些权力部门批准信用良好的银行依照与全国性银行同样的时间表开始营业。我相信州银行营业管理处在制定有关银行复业的政策时将和联邦政府一样谨慎小心,并将遵循同样的基本政策。

这些银行重新开始营业时,一小部分还没有从恐惧中恢复过来的人有可能再次开始提款。我希望大家清楚地知道,各银行将满足所有需要。我相信过去一个星期发生的囤积现金的行为已经变得非常不合时宜了。不需要预言大师来告诉大家,当人们发现可以提取他们的钱时任何时间只要目的合法都可以得到,恐惧的阴影将很快踪迹全无。人们又将乐呵呵地将他们的钱存放在得到妥善保管并能随时方便提用的地方。我可以向大家保证,把钱放在经过整顿、重新开业的银行里,要比放在褥子下面更安全。

当然,我们这个伟大的国家计划的成功依赖于公众的合作,依赖公众的明智支持和妥善利用。

大家记住,新法律的实质性完成的标志是使银行能够比以前更便于将其资产兑换成现金。已经制定了更加宽松的规定,允许银行将这些优质资产放在各储备银行以拆借资金;同时还制定了更为宽松的规定,来以这些优质资产的有价证券为基础发行更多货币。这种货币不是法定货币。只有有价证券充足时方可发行此种货币,而每家健康的银行都拥有大量此种有价证券。

在结束谈话前还要说明一点。当然会有一些银行因没有进行改组而不能重新开业。新法律准许联邦政府帮助进行迅速有效的改组工作,甚至准许其提前注入至少一部分新的必要资金。

通过对联邦政府正在做的事情进行基本回顾,我希望大家看到,在此过程中没有什么复杂或极端的事情发生。

我们的银行形势很糟糕。我们的有些银行在管理大家的存款时表现得不称职或者不诚实。他们把这些委托给其经营的钱用于投机活动和轻率的贷款。当然,绝大多数银行并不是这么干的,但确实有不少银行在从事此类活动,其数目之多,足以将人们震惊得一时间产生出不安全感,并形成一种思维定势,认为天下乌鸦一般黑。联邦政府的工作是纠正此类误解,并且尽快去做。这项工作正在完成之中。

我没有向大家承诺说,所有银行都会重新开业,或者每个人都不会遭受损失。然而,凡是可能避免的损失都将得以避免。如果我们继续采取观望放任的话,损失有可能更多更大。我甚至答应大家至少对一些压力非常大的银行实施救助。我们不仅要让可靠的银行重新开业,而且还将通过重组创办一些可靠的银行。

全国各地发给我的满怀信心的信件令我振奋不已。我对大家给予我的衷心支持表示最诚挚的谢意,感谢大家服从命令听从指挥,尽管你们似乎对我们的整个程序还不是很清楚。

毕竟,在我们对金融体系进行重新调整过程中,有一个因素比货币和黄金还重要,也就人们的信心。信心和勇气是成功地完成我们的计划的必备条件。你们大家一定要坚定信念,大家一定不要被各种流言蜚语和胡乱猜测吓破了胆。让我们大家团结起来消除恐惧!我们已经建立了恢复我们的金融系统的机制,支持这种机制,并让它运转起来就是大家的责任了。

这是我们大家共同的问题。

我们大家不能认输!


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