[OPE-L:5720] Re: Re: Re: Re: why are we on this list?

From: Rakesh Narpat Bhandari (rakeshb@Stanford.EDU)
Date: Fri Jun 01 2001 - 03:11:08 EDT

Ajit, I did not notice even an attempt at an answer to the specific 
questions which I put to you:

  what is your interpretation of Marx's theory of money? what is the 
neo ricardian theory of money? have you neo ricardians ever written a 
reply to (say) Weeks' on money?

do you not see Marx's problematic of the possibility of a general, as 
opposed to partial, crisis of overproduction in the first part of 
capital, which you claim is only about the division of labor?

does it make any sense to test Marx's theory of the effects of 
*continuous* technical change on the profit rate with a methodology 
of comparative statics?

>What you think is "right" is basically ridiculous. And what you 
>think "Marx got"
>is ridiculous too, since Marx never got the mumbo jumbo you keep 
>attributing to
>him. Marx is not yours or your friends property. We are simply not 
>allowing you
>and many others to attribute nonsense to him and make him look like a fool
>before an intellectual community.

Is this the intellectual community  led by Samuelson? Well far from 
being a giant in the history of economic thought, I had the 
impression that his reading of Marx was entirely derived through 
secondary sources, viz. Sweezy and Meek.

>  This is what makes some of you very angry with

I am not angry with you. I just don't take Samuelson or you seriously 
on the so called transformation problem.

>  As far as "Marx got basically right" is concerned, even Garegnani would
>agree with that. The dispute is about what he really got,

good point.

>  and what you think he
>really got is simply ridiculous. That's all.

his theory of the possibility and necessity of general crises is ridiculous?

>My debate with TSS people, Fred Mosely, and many others on this list is a good
>testimony of who can be proven week and defenseless. And they are 
>not criticisms
>of Marx coming from protected confines of bourgeois academy,

really? wasn't Sraffa who is your hero a Cambridge don? what happened 
to grossmann and blake and mattick sr?

>  but rather
>criticisms of poor interpretations of Marx coming from a Marx scholar, who had
>to suffer at the hands of bourgeois academy because of his 
>scholarship on Marx.

have you neo ricardians ever responded to the Freeman and Mandel 
volume? did Steedman ever write a reply to Shaikh on the issue of the 
misusage of the word "determination" in neo Ricardian theory? I don't 
know what you mean by poor scholarship, but such dropping of the ball 
strikes me as very poor.

>>  >Just a little while ago, in [5705], you wrote that
>>  >you 'learned'  from Ajit.
>>  Though I disagree with his bit about two problematics, and I find
>>  absurd his claim that what Marx says about money in the first part is
>>  not important. It may not be important to Sweezy who said almost
>>  nothing about money in Theory of Capitalist Development or Meek who
>>  seems to have seen no connection between Marx's labor theory of value
>>  and money or Dobb who spends no time on the peculiarities of the
>>  equivalent form in Political economy and capitalism or the analytical
>>  marxists like Roemer, Elster, and Cohen who also spend almost no time
>>  on Marx's theory of money. So in downplaying Marx's theory of money,
>>  Ajit stands in the great tradition of Marxism which has so
>>  effectively buried Marx.
>In my opinion what you guys are doing in the name of Marx is going to
>effectively finish off Marx once and for all.

OK so you are not going to say anything about the theory of money?

>  The conclusion anybody can draw
>from reading Kliman, Mosely, and you, is that Marx was talking gibberish. And
>this is what is going to bury his work finally. Dobb, Sweezy, Meek, etc. kept
>his work alive.

I guess you are not going to explain their silence on Marx's theory 
of money either.

>If you think that you and your friends have contributed more to
>Marxism than the people you mention above, then how can anybody blame somebody
>if he ridicules you?

Sweezy did not understand Marx as well as William J Blake did (again 
note Sweezy's complete neglect of the theory of money); Bauer's 
underconsumptionism (taken over by Sweezy) is neither a better of 
interpretation of Marx nor a more logical theory than Grossmann's 
mass/rate of profit theory (see Bernice Shoul's dissertation).
Meek makes no sense on the transformation problem; he thinks the mass 
of surplus value should be held invariant but for reasons other than 
why Sweezy or Bortkiewicz thought so. He doesn't try to iron out the 
debate. He just asserts that this invariance condition is what Marx 
would have wanted; it is a very poor argument. Dobb is surely the 
giant among them.

Yours, Rakesh

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