[OPE-L:3426] Re: Re: Re: Gil's criticisms

From: Patrick L. Mason (pmason@garnet.acns.fsu.edu)
Date: Fri Jun 02 2000 - 13:54:35 EDT

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There is nothing in Marx's theory that would preclude one class of
defrauding another, or one class (or other social group) using violence to
obtain surplus value from another class (or social group). Indeed, in
chapter one Marx doesn't argue that commodities must exchange at labor
values. Rather, the power of Marx's analysis is that even if there is no
fraud, or physical violence, or commodities exchanging at a different ratio
than their value, the labor/labor-power distinction allows for the creation
of surplus value and the exploitation of workers.

All of the other stuff can be brought in at later, more concrete stages of
development of the analysis.

peace, patrick

At 07:47 AM 6/2/00 -0400, you wrote:
>In a recent post (sorry, I don't know the OPE-L ID#) Gil
>suggested that there was nothing in Marx's theory which precluded
>the possibility of one class defrauding *another* class through
>I agree with Gil! Indeed, one could argue that landlords defraud
>capitalists through the mechanism of rent.
>One might also argue (as I have done previously) that in advanced
>capitalist economies where most markets are highly concentrated
>in the hands of oligopolies in which there is a high degree of
>product differentiation (and, relatedly, large expenditures on
>advertising and marketing), there is the distict possibility
>that means of consumption destined for working-class consumption
>are systematically sold at market prices above their values.
>If this was the case, then there would be a re-distribution of
>income away from workers to [one section of] capitalists
>that occurs in the *marketplace* for commodities consumed by
>workers. If this is the case, then capitalists defraud workers
>not only in the process of production (where profit is theft,
>is it not?) but also afterwards in the process of circulation.
>In solidarity, Jerry

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