[OPE-L:3826] Re: Re: Re: Re: NI and all that

From: Allin Cottrell (cottrell@wfu.edu)
Date: Sat Sep 16 2000 - 23:05:23 EDT

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On Sat, 16 Sep 2000, Rakesh Bhandari wrote:

> Ajit,
> All you have let me know is that you refuse to read what Marx wrote. It is
> not mine but Marx's starting point in vol 3 which you refuse to recognize.
> I reasonably took your 3722 to be your agreement that Marx does indeed
> define cost price as the money sum laid out as variable and constant
> capital.

This exchange seems to be generating more heat than light.
Partly it is Ajit's fault, since as a matter of history of
thought there can be no doubt that Marx sometimes used the term
"cost price" precisely as Rakesh states.

> In the transformation procedure Marx is not recognizing the
> need to transform the inputs from values to prices. He
> recognizes the need to modify cost price, not transform the
> inputs from values to prices.

This, on the other hand, strikes me as obscurantism on Rakesh's
part. Why would Marx wish to "modify" cost price, other than to
effect a transformation from values to prices? He's trying to
arrive at a correct account of the formation of price of
production as a "transformed form" of value, and recognizes that
a second-order complication is introduced by the fact that the
prices of the means of production required to produce any given
commodity will themselves embody a deviation from value. Only
he didn't have the analytical apparatus needed to take account
of this complication with full rigour.

Allin Cottrell.

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