[OPE-L:4511] "Don't go like that" (Was "What is Volume I about?")

From: Andrew_Kliman (Andrew_Kliman@email.msn.com)
Date: Sun Nov 12 2000 - 22:43:32 EST

A reply to OPE-L 4506.


: constant capital has different meanings in the determination and
: resolution of value.

: In the determination of value, constant capital is the value of the
: means of production as they are consumed and reappear in the final
: product.

In  whose theory?  Yours?  Or Marx's?  If the latter, where is your
evidence?  I say there isn't any.


: That total value or price (which is its monetary expression) is then
: broken down into or resolved into cost price (k) plus surplus value
: (s).

Yes, but in Marx's own theory, it is broken down in a very precise way.
Specifically, the already determined c and v have the form of appearance
k.  The magnitude of k DOES NOT differ from the magnitude of c + v.  See
Part 1 of Vol. III.

Yet in Marx's theory, k does differ, as you have acknowledged, from the
values of the used-up means of production and subsistence.

It therefore follows that c is not -- IS NOT -- the value of the used-up
means of production.  Q.E.D.

: If we resolve more or less of total value or price into cost price
: upon the transformation of the inputs, we simply have to resolve more
: or less of total value or price into surplus value.

This is a clever way of saying that total profit differs from total
surplus-value.  It also implies that the extraction of surplus-labor in
capitalist production is not the sole source of profit (or
surplus-value).  The magnitude of aggregate surplus-value clearly becomes
dependent on how it is distributed.  E.g., if, to achieve competitive
equalization of the profit rate, k comes to differ from the values of the
material elements of capital, so will s.  Ergo, s is determined by
competition -- in circulation, not production.

Assume that, at time t, the value of the used-up means of production is
10 and that their price is 30.  Assume that the value added by living
labor between times t and t+1 is 15, and that v = 0.  The surplus-value
produced between t and t+1 should then equal 15 as well.  That's what it
equals in Marx's theory.  But in your interpretation, Rakesh,
surplus-value will equal 10 + 15 - 30 = -5.   Workers, even though they
live on air and work till they drop, have somehow exploited the
capitalists.  Go figure.

You are creating internal inconsistency after internal inconsistency, all
in order to hold onto the physicalist dogma that c and v are the values
of capital's material elements.

A man has his arm wrapped behind his head.  He tells his doctor, "Doc, it
hurts when I go like this."  The doctor replies, "Don't go like that."
That is my advice to you as well.

Andrew Kliman

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