[OPE-L:5793] Re: cause(s) and consequence(s) of the

From: Andrew Brown (Andrew@lubs.leeds.ac.uk)
Date: Tue Jun 05 2001 - 09:15:39 EDT

Hi Jerry,

I think maybe my previous email's 'punchline' came too late. Just to 
reiterate, the explicit motivations of a scientist (what they *say* 
they are doing) are not necessarily their actual motivations. This is 
the reason your 'evidence' (what some theorists *say* motivates 
them) is not conclusive, far from it. I don't think your reply 
(concerning unintended consequences) grapples with this point, 
rather it supports it. Where do we look then for further 'evidence' 
(better called 'justification')? Well I suggest to the content of the 
debate. This is 'value'. Value is crucial in the CMP. Hence this 
seems the better bet as to the real motivation underlying the 
debate. (Though it is true I am interested in the real reason as 
opposed to motivations, per se). It is an *implicit* motivation, not 
necessarily a stated one (though I think it has been made explicit 
by more people, more often, than you imply). 

Re 'Defensiveness', again I think you support my point: defensiveness 
has some or other positive outcome - you actually suggest one 
precisely in order to justify defensiveness. A debate which has no 
implications for a positive grasp of the world is surely without 
scientific merit.

Re my point about a world without need for defendng the LTV 
(etc.): This is a thought experiment to make a point about our 
world, not a description of our world. Perhaps the relevance of this 
thought experiment is clearer now I have reiteratied more clearly 
the problem with your 'manifest evidence'?

Re Fine on consumption, the household, etc. You will find Fine 
himself  is keen to stress his to debt to value theory on these 
issues. (The best example is Fine's recent 'a personal account of 
the LTV'). In fact, to explain these concrete issues it is probably 
best to start with the key abstract one, the LTV! (Though, if I had 
the competence I would indeed discuss his more concrete stuff, as 
you suggested). 

RE my own line of research. Would that it were so easy to jump to 
more concrete issues! Certainly, one can 'examine' them (indeed I 
have even written the odd thing on something as concrete as the 
euro) but this is different from grasping their true significance within 
the CMP, to reconstruct them in thought (as you know very well). 
The latter is my aim - it takes time!

Best wishes,


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