From: Paul Cockshott (wpc@DCS.GLA.AC.UK)
Date: Mon Oct 25 2004 - 08:16:35 EDT
-----Original Message----- Phil ---- Initially, I took the problem to be a purely mathematical one within a fairly orthodox framework. After about four years I realized that this was inadequate. The mathematical analysis was useful in revealing the intractability of the problem. At one stage I thought that negative values were possible but would tend to disappear with capitalist development. Techniques of production were designed where possible to yield positive values and adverse cases could be dismissed on the grounds of "arrested development". It was an appeal to "real subsumption". But the adverse cases cannot just be ignored. The problem is important because negative values are bad news. It is challenging because the problem is impossible to solve in a physical quantities input output framework. ------------------------ Why is this a problem. We all know that negative values do exist in joint production, without them there would be no market for waste disposal firms. Capitalism can survive this provided that the negative value of the waste products is low enough relative to the main products.
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