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www.hg.126.com 116 Issues of Longhu Xiaoxuan | From "A Dream of Red Mansions" to Buchanan's Public Choice Theory

116 Issues of Longhu Xiaoxuan | From "A Dream of Red Mansions" to Buchanan's Public Choice Theory

Public number: Longhu Xiaoxuan Source: Time: 2020-02-21 02:08:52

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No. 116 Longhu Xiaoxuan: From "A Dream of Red Mansions" to Buchanan's Public Choice Theory

Chen Yunkai

Recently, a TV series called "The Name of the People" has been hit. I watched several episodes of it, and my suspense was very exciting. There is a director Zhao in the TV series, claiming to be the son of a peasant, but finally fell into great greed.

Historian Wu Si put forward a concept often mentioned, which is "hidden rules". The so-called "hidden rules" are derived from the actual calculation of interests. The "hidden rules" also reflects the human instinct to seek benefits and avoid disadvantages. Teacher Wu Si once cited a description in "A Dream of Red Mansions" to explain the hidden rules. At the beginning of Honglou Meng, there was an aspiring scholar Jia Yucun. After he obtained his name, he became a prefect of Nanjing and soon accepted a murder case. Xue Xun, a famous family member of the local family, killed Feng Yuan, a small owner, and grabbed a girl , And then went away, the victim did not sue for more than a year. Jia Yucun heard that he suddenly became furious and said, "How can there be such a fart! If you kill your life, you will leave for nothing." Someone will be arrested on the spot.


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Then he saw a door beside him winking at him. After entering the back room, Menzi and Jia Yucun had some wonderful conversations. Menzi asked: "If the master is honored to serve in this province, wouldn't it be impossible to copy a province's" protector talisman "?" Yucun asked quickly: "What is a" guardian talisman? "I didn't know." Menzi said: " This is worth it! Even this I do n’t know, how can it be a long-term one! Everyone who is a local official now has a private list, which says that the province ’s most powerful and powerful, rich and expensive local gentry name and surname, all provinces Of course; if you do n’t know, you have violated such a person for a while, not only the official, but I ’m afraid that I wo n’t even be able to save my life! ”Then he took out a copy of the guardian ’s amulet, and there was Xue ’s family on it.

Jia Yucun asked Menzi what to do with the case. Menzi said that the Xue family and the Jia family who helped you to become the prefecture are relatives, so why not treat them personally, so that you can go to Jiafu people in the future. Jia Yucun said: "Why are you talking about it? But it's about human life. It's a matter of reviving the Emperor's grace, and it's a rebirth. It's a rebirth. When you are trying hard to report, can you abolish the law for your own sake?" Menzi heard , Sneer: "What the master said is not a rationale, but it can't be done in the world today. Don't you hear the ancients say: 'The big husband moves from time to time', and then says: 'A good man who avoids evil is a gentleman.' According to the master, not only can he not serve the court, but he can't protect himself. Think twice about it. ”Jia Yucun lowered his head for half a day, and finally said something inappropriate, and then studied it, in fact, completely followed the door. Suggestion, very cleverly released Xue Yan.

After reading the passage in "A Dream of Red Mansions", I feel that this is simply the perfect footnote of American economist Buchanan's public choice theory. Prior to Buchanan's political studies, he basically studied how the government can allocate resources reasonably from the perspective of the public interest, so as to achieve the goal of "justice" in a society. But Buchanan believes that this idea is wrong. He believes that individuals are always decision-makers, selectors and actors in the process of collective activities, private activities, market activities or politics. The concept of mutual exchange between Chinese people was transplanted into the field of political decision-making. He believes that whether it is officials and officials, or officials and people, their interaction is essentially a transaction. Therefore, from his beginning, the study of political science has entered the study of "transaction paradigm" from "distribution paradigm". Therefore, once Buchanan has a perspective, then whether it is the characters in the TV series "Name of the People" or Jia Yucun in "A Dream of Red Mansions", they walk in this officialdom. Reasonable transaction. "

Was Jia Yucun a bad guy at first? Obviously not. He read the sage book and knew that he would serve the court. There was a dignity of the scholars and a blood for the people. However, under the instruction of Menzi, he understood that if he was blind-handed, he might not only be unable to serve the court, let alone his black hat, even his life would not be guaranteed. The hidden rules of the ancient Chinese officialdom were actually Buchanan's "rules of official transactions." One who could become a good official, Jia Yucun, was hanged by hidden rules.

If we imagine that there is another institution outside the Jiayu Village to supervise the government of the Jiayu Village. This institution helps the people and exposes officials for their promotion and maximizing their interests. Then it will constitute an ecological chain of political power checks and balances. Closed loop, Jia Yucun and Honglou Mengli's four families will have a certain change in the calculation pattern of their interests. In the West, the species that live on this profession are called parliamentarians, and they are designed to be one of the agents of the rights of the people.

However, in the West, the design of this system also has such problems. It is easy for officials to meet the needs of voters in an infinite manner for the sake of votes and political achievements, resulting in excessive social welfare, resulting in a lot of waste, and society becomes inefficient. This is a deal between officials and voters. In order to crack down on government officials, parliamentarians are likely to package their own interests into the interests of the people, hinder the implementation of a favorable public project, and cause a lot of government administrative waste. At the same time, in the western political ecology, it is common for political opponents to have inside information to crack down on opponents through the media, and it is not uncommon for parliamentarians and arms dealers to circumvent various laws and money transactions. The clear rules and hidden rules of different societies jointly determine the rational behavior of officials. In Buchanan's view, it is futile for any society to expect a politician to influence specific problems and endings. Most of the time, it is the rules of this society that determine the specific endings. Therefore, in the eyes of economists, only by constantly revising the rules of social games and reaching agreement on the rules, can the transactions between officials and officials and the transactions between officials and voters tend to be benign interactions. Ultimately promote the overall well-being of society. This is the enlightenment given by Dream of the Red Mansion and the economist Buchanan.

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