[OPE-L:5323] Re: Re: Re: double divergence

From: Rakesh Narpat Bhandari (rakeshb@Stanford.EDU)
Date: Tue Apr 03 2001 - 13:22:24 EDT

>Marx then went on in the rest of this section to argue that IN SPITE OF
>THE FACT THAT the price of the means of production are NOT equal to their
>values, the cost price is still THE SAME for the determination of both the
>values and the price of production of average commodities, from which it
>follows that the prices of production of these average commodities are
>equal to their values.  The cost price that is the same for both values
>and prices of production is equal to the price of the production of the
>inputs, not the value of the inputs.

Dear Fred,
I don't think this is what is Marx is saying. Summarizing his chapter 
11, he is saying that for this imagined average commodity a wage led 
distributional shift (which is the main topic of concern in this 
paragraph as well as chap 11) changes neither its value (k + s) nor 
its price of production (k + p). That is, for the average commodity 
which is *imagined* as a synedoche of total capital what holds for 
total capital holds for it as well or rather what holds for it 
reveals what holds for total capital. This imagined average commodity 
is simply advanced for didactic purposes; it has no real economic 
significance. For real commodities, a wage led distributional shift 
will lead, c. p.,  to changes in individual prices of production, 
which gives the illusion that a change in the way a pie is cut can 
change, as Ajit once put it, the size of the pie.

Again, I don't see exactly why this point conflicts with the previous 
point of double divergence.

Or why Marx *must* be talking gibberish to advance both the thesis of 
double divergence and his analysis that wage led change in 
distribution has, c.p, no effect on the value and price of production 
of total capital of which the average commodity can be imagined as a 
perfect aliquot.

  Of course he may not have made the point clearly, but why can't we?

Yours, Rakesh

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