[OPE-L:4496] Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: what is Volume 1 about?

From: Rakesh Narpat Bhandari (rakeshb@Stanford.EDU)
Date: Sat Nov 11 2000 - 13:17:45 EST

>At 5:40 +0100 10-11-2000, Fred B. Moseley wrote:
>>Hi Riccardo,
>>Thanks very much for your clarifications.  I hope you don't mind if I ask
>>for further clarifications below.  The main thrust of my questions is that
>>I would like to see your equations that express the various aspects of
>>your interpretation of Volume 1.  Without the equations, it is hard for me
>>to figure out what you are saying.
>Sorry, Fred. I've no special equations. I agree with Foley's ones (see his
>last paper in the RRPE), including the comments on you and on Brinkman
>(acting as a bridge between the 'dual' interpretation and the monetary one).

Riccardo (and Duncan),

don't have the latest RRPE paper. but I don't see how Duncan's 
equations are correct in his *Understanding Capital*.

In applying the transformation procedure to the steel inputs, he has 
its *price* rise from $2.00 to $2.208 so the total price of the input 
steel goes from $15,000 to $16,560.

But once the steel input is transformed into the form of the price of 
production, Duncan then says: "The VALUE OF CONSTANT CAPITAL has not 
remained unchanged and as a result the total price of the commodities 
has changed..." (p.101; my emphasis) Total price goes to $36,560 from 

But of course a change in the price of the inputs in this 
"transformation case" is exactly not a result of a change in the 
value of those inputs and thus a change in the value of the means of 
production consumed in the output and thus in total value or price 
(the monetary expression of value).

It is simply impossible in Marxian terms for a change in cost alone 
to issue in rising prices.

Implicit in Duncan's argument is what Marx called an irrational formula:

k + s => C ($35,000)

(k + a) + s => C + a ($36,560)

But cost price is not *itself* formative of value. Marx is explicit 
here, so a change in cost price alone, i.e., without any change in 
the value of the means of production, cannot itself change total 
output value or price.

The new interpretation simply has it wrong: it is the mass of surplus 
value which has to give if costs are raised by a simple upward change 
in the price of the inputs whose value remains unchanged throughout 
the transformation.

C => k + s

So if cost price is modified

C => (k+a) + (s-a).

No matter what Bortkiewicz or Sweezy or Meek said, it is not possible 
in Marxian terms for the mass of surplus value to remain invariant if 
one modifies the cost price of total commodity output whose total 
value and price remain unchanged.

It is no defense of Marx to hold the mass of surplus value (or value 
added) invariant in the transformation.

Yours, Rakesh

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