Re: [OPE-L] Capital in General

From: glevy@PRATT.EDU
Date: Thu Oct 20 2005 - 10:03:51 EDT

In assuming that S = D in  _Capital,  Marx was not accepting
Say's Law.  That is a red herring.  The issue here is one of the
logical ordering of Marx's presentation.   In Volume 2, Say's Law
is _denied_ in order to demonstrate the abstract, formal possibility of
crisis.  In Volume 3, in the section on the law of the tendency
for the general rate of profit to decline (LTGRPD),  S is assumed to
equal D in order to demonstrate how capitalist crisis can occur
because of the inner nature of capital itself _even with this
assumption_.   A  complete theory of crisis can not be systematically
developed at the level of abstraction of _Capital_.   A complete
theory requires an analysis "in which production is posited as a
totality together with all its moments, but within which, at the same
time, all contradictions come into play" (_Grundrisse_,  Penguin ed.,
p. 227).  Marx stated repeatedly and at no point ever denied that
an analysis of crisis was linked to the subject of the world market:
indeed, he often refers to Book VI in the 6-book-plan was "World
Market and Crisis."    This is not a subject which can be pieced
together by collecting the asides of Marx on the world market;
it is a subject which is essential to the subject matter (capitalism)
and requires _systematic_ analysis.  To do that, one has to keep the
_subject itself_ in focus rather than what Marx wrote. Reading Marx's
tea leaves or Grossmann can not substitute for this analysis.
Furthermore, if we are to seriously consider the world market we can
not consider this question only abstractly:  we have to consider the
world market as it exists in late capitalism and that requires some
empirical/statistical analysis if we are to reconstruct in thought
a real subject (a point I think Jurriaan would agree with).
Additionally, an analysis of classes, the state, and foreign trade is
_required_ for us to more fully and concretely comprehend the nature
of capitalist crisis.

In solidarity, Jerry

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