[OPE-L:6858] Re: Re: Diego Guerrero

From: Rakesh Bhandari (rakeshb@stanford.edu)
Date: Tue Apr 02 2002 - 13:48:31 EST

Diego writes in 6848 (welcome Diego):

>6) The "temporality" of the TSS seems to me a wrong attempt to capture the
>necessary dynamical character of value. The latest paper by Alejandro
>Ramos --a former ope-l suscriber--, which has been positively appraised by
>Duncan Foley --another former subscriber-- but not so much by Paul
>Cockshott --a current suscriber-- is a new example. I think the TSS
>proponents tend to adopt an "individual firm" point of view. But in Marx and
>in reality the social point of view has priority. We need to understand how
>and why values are decreasing in time due to continuos labor productivity
>improvements. But real time is composed by a succession of moments (t0, t1,
>t2...), and in all and every one of them both production (labor) processes
>and purchases-and-sales are taking simultaneously place.

OK so those firms which purchased at the t0 prices  are now forced to 
sell at the cheaper t1 prices and are thus suffering lower profit 
rates than would have obtained if they could have sold at t0 prices.

But I don't see how TSS denies that those firms which renew their 
capital equipment at t1 prices will now have a higher profit rate at 
t2 than those firms whose   equipment was purchased at t0 prices.

In fact those firms which purchased capital equipment at t1 prices 
may be able to survive and profit at t2 prices while those firms 
which purchased their capital equipment at t0 prices are forced to 
the wall.

So TSS does not seem confined to just one firm; it seems able to 
accomodate the destiny of a variety of firms in terms of the vintage 
of their capital stock. David Laibman has of course argued otherwise.

What seems to me most puzzling and difficult about the TSS approach 
is what Duncan has hit on--what is happening to the value of money or 
the inverse of the monetary expression of labor time in the course of 
accumulation. It's a shame that Alan and Andrew and Duncan are not on 
the list to discuss these matters; it's great that David Laibman has 

I also think the TSS presentation has two other problems:

(1) as Jerry has pointed out, it  assumes that workers live on air 
which leaves their vindication of Marx dubious

(2) I believe that TSS fails to allow for the *indirect* effects of 
what they call a rising material rate of profit. This failure, 
coupled with the assumption that workers live on air, makes their 
vindication even more dubious.


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