[OPE-L:3995] Re: (no subject)

From: Allin Cottrell (cottrell@wfu.edu)
Date: Fri Oct 06 2000 - 20:41:34 EDT

On Fri, 6 Oct 2000, Rakesh Bhandari (bhandari@Princeton.EDU) wrote:

> You argued that it complicated matters to make the
> transformation both a solution to a dynamic price problem
> and the resolution of the contradiction between the average
> rate of profit and the law of value. You said that we had to
> forget about the first and concentrate on the second.

OK, you've sucked me back into this question by giving a concise
and fair statement of my stance!

> But I already said that I was not interested in the price
> problem!  Marx is not seeking a determinate solution to the
> first, only a resolution of the second contradiction. This
> is why you are simply not responding to me.

Here's our difference: Although you say you have no interest in
the price problem (dynamic or otherwise), it seems to me that
you want to introduce spurious "dynamic" issues that have
relevance only on the supposition that the time-path of prices
_is_ of interest, while I'm trying to follow out the logic of
Marx's comparison of two atemporal hypothetical cases (prices =
values vs. prices are such as to yield a uniform rate of

> I have said over and over that we don't need to know what
> the transformed input prices had to have been to understand
> the logic of Marx's resolution of said contradiction. So I
> have said that we should give up on any claim that we have
> in the strict sense determined or can determime the unit
> input prices and thus the unit output prices (forget
> prices!);  rather we should understand at the very abstract
> level at which it is pitched the logic of Marx's reversal of
> Malthus' critique of Ricardo.

And I'm saying (this _is_ a response, though you may not like it
or agree with it) that the Malthus/Ricardo problem cannot be
resolved if we can't specify precisely the theoretical
relationship between (a) the hypothetical system in which prices
correspond to values and (b) the hypothetical system in which
prices correspond to prices of production.  At some points I'm
getting the impression that you agree Marx didn't quite manage
to do this; at others you seem to deny this.

Forgive me for stopping here.  I have a lot of other things to
attend to.

Allin Cottrell.

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