[OPE-L:5708] Re: Re: Re: de-bunking the de-bunk

From: Gerald_A_Levy (Gerald_A_Levy@email.msn.com)
Date: Thu May 31 2001 - 19:26:49 EDT

Re Steve K's [5698]:

> But you forget that my critique of LTV marxism > begins from a completely
different foundation to
> Sraffians et al. I don't start by saying "the LTV
> leads to logical conundrums"; I start by saying
> "the LTV is inconsistent  with Marx's dialectical > theory of value".

I recognize this as your claim. However, I'm not
convinced you have grasped the diversity of
perspective among Marxists re what you call
Marx's 'dialectical theory of value'.  I think that
our VFTers, for example (advocates, as they
are of 'systematic dialectics') consider their
perspective to be every bit (and probably a
lot more) dialectical than your own. Also:
what you call 'LTV' they might call 'LET'
(labour embodied theory) -- which they reject.

> Similarly on TSS; I could, if I had the time--
> which I don't--put TSS into a
> general and generic dynamic form, and show that > it is internally
inconsistent (I suspect that it too
>  would only work with constant L/K
> ratios in all industries).

Again you put forward the assertion in advance
of the demonstration. For your assertion to
carry any weight, it must be accompanied by
the demonstration.  Otherwise it is merely
intuition which we have been given no reason
to accept.

>  From my point of view, these arguments feel a
> bit like fighting the Black
> Knight in "Monty Python and the Holy Grail".
> From my point of view--and
> from the point of view of the historians of
> economic thought who refereed
> my papers on this issue--I've already cut off both > legs (the belief that
> the LTV is Marx's fundamental theory of value, > and the belief that the
> is consistent with his theory of value).

Presumably there are other serious scholars who
are historians of economic thought who don't
share your conclusion that you have cut off
both of these legs. Indeed, has _any_ historian
of economic thought gone on record, in print,
supporting this assessment?  If so, what are
their names and what are the sources?

> what I focus on in Keynes are the very rich
> appreciations of uncertainty and the role of
> finance, which are largely
> expressed in Chapter 12 of the GT and his 1937 > papers.

Long before Keynes came on the scene, Marx
had a _far greater_ appreciation of uncertainty
for he not only rejected Say's Law (Bernice
Shoul once wrote a very good article on this
topic) but incorporated uncertainty into the
very core of his theory: i.e. uncertainty is a
necessary consequence of the commodity-form
and it is developed in successive more concrete
ways as the categories of his analysis are
unfolded and deepened.

> True, Kalecki is a better father of what is called > Post Keynesianism
> Keynes. But even Kalecki would accept that
> Keynes was the better writer,

The question of who is a 'better writer' is an
issue only insofar as one compares who is a
better _popularizer_ of a theory.  That is an entirely
secondary issue, though, when judged against
the *merits* of their particular perspectives.

> There are some arguments I would reject in your > statements
below--Post-Keynesians aren't
> marginalists (but most are static theorists,
> which is almost as bad).

I didn't say they were -- I wrote that Keynes
himself was a marginalist.

> As for myself, I can cope with being typecast
> as a
> Post Keynesian, but if I have the chance to apply > my own economist
> then it is a Marxian evolutionary economist.

To paraphrase Dick Nixon [!]: 'we are all
Marxians now' ??!!

This is the first time I can recall you calling
yourself a Marxian ....

Perhaps a constructive line of discussion might
be to ask: what insights does evolutionary
economics bring to Marxian economics?

In solidarity, Jerry

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