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《经济学人》:商业天堂还是贼窝?

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Small-town corruption
小镇腐败

Business paradise or den of thieves?
商业天堂还是贼窝?

An effort to abolish a highly unusual Californian city
消除一座特别另类之加州城市的努力

May 5th 2011 | VERNON | from the print edition

EVEN Vernon’s logo proclaims that the city is “exclusively industrial”, and that is no exaggeration. It was founded in 1905 at a railway crossing along the Los Angeles River as a sort of Eden for business, especially the smelly, dirty and blue-collar manufacturing sort. An aerial view shows neat boundaries around its 5.2 square miles (13.5 square kilometres), as the residential neighbourhoods of Los Angeles County suddenly give way to huge blocks of warehouses and factories. Lorries seem to outnumber cars on Vernon’s streets. The whiff of pigs being slaughtered hangs over those parts not covered by the aroma of coffee being processed.

即便弗农市(Vernon)的标志上宣称本市“专事工业”,这种说法也并未言过其实。1905年,该市创建于洛杉矶河沿岸的一处铁路线交汇处,人们将此地作为某种商业(尤其是又脏又臭的蓝领制造业)的乐园。从空中俯瞰可以发现,随着洛杉矶县的住宅街区突然被大片仓库和工厂所取代,弗农市5.2平方英里(13.5平方公里)的土地周围呈现着整齐的界线。在弗农街头,卡车看起来比轿车还要多。在没有被正在加工的咖啡香气所覆盖的区域,飘荡着被屠宰的猪的气息。

In most of the world, it is inconceivable that Vernon could even be considered a “city”. It has about 1,800 businesses that employ more than 50,000 workers who live elsewhere in Los Angeles County. But it has only 96 actual residents, and those live in housing tucked improbably between power stations and warehouses and mostly owned by the city.

在全球大部分地区,人们都无法想到弗农甚至会被视为一座城市。该市有大约1800家企业,雇佣了超过5万名居住在洛杉矶县其他区域的员工。不过,该市真正的居民只有96人,那些人住在以几乎不可能的方式挤在发电站与仓库之间、所有权主要掌握在城市手中的房屋内。



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