[OPE-L:4480] Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: what is Volume 1 about?

From: Rakesh Narpat Bhandari (rakeshb@Stanford.EDU)
Date: Tue Nov 07 2000 - 14:24:32 EST

>This move makes total profit = total surplus value by
>construction.  It also makes "total surplus value" come apart
>from total surplus value in the original value table, total
>surplus value in value terms.  Thus it just displaces the
>problem, rather than solving it.

I don't think you have forgotten the implications of Marx's 
acceptance of Ricardo's critique of the Smithean adding up the theory 
of price which allowed for a change in costs while value remained 
invariant to result in a rise of prices.

As Ricardo showed (and you can doubtless articulate this better than 
I): if prices can't rise because value remains constant (assuming as 
always a constant monetary expression of value),  then an increase in 
cost prices only leaves surplus value to give. I just quoted Marx's 
acceptance of this Ricardian scientific insight.

  If you had remebered this, you would not think there is a 
transformation problem: it would be clear to you why the treatment of 
surplus value in terms of an invariance condition even as cost prices 
are modified and value kept constant is the fantastic invention of 
Bortkiewicz, Sweezy and economists in general.

And it was not in terms of exploitation theory but in the name of 
keeping the unit of account at one that they not only invented but 
used this invariance condition, setting in Sweezy's terms z at 1. 
It's a hodge podge of confusion.

It was clear to Marx that the concept of surplus value is already 
implicit in the criticism of Smith by Ricardo who had not developed 
a cost of production theory. Marx spared no praise of Ricardo on this 
stunning scientific achievement.  Long before Sraffa set the record 
straight in his intro to Ricardo's Principles, II Rubin taught this 
to his students in the 1920s.  I highly recommend his lectures on the 
history of economic thought which have been translated into English 
which I have also read in my attempt to recover the revolutionary 
Marxist tradition buried by Stalinism, Nazism and Anglo American 
Keynesified Marxism.

Yours, Rakesh

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Thu Nov 30 2000 - 00:00:05 EST