Date: Mon Jan 06 2003 - 10:25:49 EST
Quoting firstname.lastname@example.org: > Value is determined by abstract labour; however, in my comprehension of Marx, > > abstract labour does not constitute an empirical magnitude, which could be > measured by the stopwatch. It is an abstraction, which is constituted (it > acquires a tangible existence) in the process of exchange. ITS DIRECT AND > SOLE > FORM OF APPEARANCE IS MONEY. One should not therefore conclude that it only exists in the form of money. Money is a means by which abstract labour can be represented to the economic agents of bourgeois society, but abstract necessary labour is the precondition for this form of representation. Secondly money is not the only form of appearance of abstract labour in bourgeois society merely its imputed form when exchanging the products of labour. Within a unit of property like the firm, it is possible for abstract labour to appear in the planning process of the firm, when it is estimating how much labour it will have to expend on a project. In this way the capitalist firm prefigures the socialist society which calculates the distribution of abstract labour between different concrete activities. Again, during war-time, even the capitalist state is constrained to have labour time budgets at the national level. The 'Audit of War' strips off the illusions of commodity fetishism. > Value can be expressed only by means of money. There is nothing to stop me expressing value in shoes, oil, coal, or labour - the first are implicit in commodity exchange, the latter its precondition.
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