[OPE-L:3343] Re: Re: Re: Re: Fwd: Re: RE: Re: objectivity of value

From: Patrick L. Mason (pmason@garnet.acns.fsu.edu)
Date: Thu May 25 2000 - 12:08:37 EDT

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I think I understand your argument. Consider the following.

1+r(p1*a11 + p2*a21 + w*L1) = p1

1+r(p1*a21 + p2*a22 + w*L2) = p2

Are you saying that the technical coefficients (a11, a12, a21, & a22, L1,
and L2) are determined simultaneously with the price system?

Some have made this criticism of linear models. It may be correct.

>From any empirical end, it doesn't matter. All the data is in. That is to
say, empirical analysis would be examining what has already happenned, not
what is currently happenning.
So, we would know the technical coefficients and could proceed to make
value estimates of past activity.

But, your point is fundamentally different from Mike and others. They are
arguing that any type of empirical analysis is a waste of time. You are
simply saying that there are some theoretical problems with the
Neo-Ricardian approach to values and prices. Well, you wouldn't get any
argument from me on that score!!!

peace, patrick

At 11:54 PM 5/24/00 -0400, you wrote:
>I think we are talking past each other, but I look forward to your
>arguments (as Ajit's, Allin's, and Paul's--and thank you all for
>replies)--I am not making an argument against estimating the rate of
>exploitation, unprod/prod labor ratio, OCC, though these will be estimates,
>complicated by credit and the operations of global capitalism.
>I am pursuing another matter here: it seems to me that the point that
>Mattick Jr, Carchedi and Fred M have all made about what can be taken as
>givens is correct. As Fred puts it, Marx does not take as givens the
>physical quantities of the technical conditions of production and the real
>wage; at any rate, I would like to see debate about this point of his.
>To me, it seems obvious that the linear equations with which are asked by
>the neo Ricardians to *begin* could only be drawn up with, if not after,
>the price system or the measurement of value, not prior to it. How would
>you know that you need to put wheat and iron and pigs into the equations if
>these were not the clusters of activities whose output was sold at prices?
>how possibly can one determine the average technical conditions of
>production in each industry without having determined already through a
>price measurement the last marginal producer that will be included in
>determining the average technical condition in any industry?
>Look I am not an economist, I am just looking at the first chapter of
>Spencer J Pack Reconstructing Marxian Economics: Marx Based upon a Sraffian
>Commodity Theory of Value, and it seems to me that the Sraffian formalism
>from which we are supposed to derive a price system seems like utter
>nonsense because the price system is presupposed in the writing of the
>putatively prior equations. But I could be very, very wrong.
>Yours, Rakesh

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