From: Ian Wright (wrighti@ACM.ORG)
Date: Fri Jun 09 2006 - 20:03:26 EDT
Hi Allin > Ordinary prices have got nothing to do with time, agreed. But > what you're calling the "price of money-capital" is not, in my > view, a price at all. It's a rental charge. And rental charges > have everything to do with time: how long do you get to keep > whatever it is you're renting? The length of the production period. I answered this question in my last message, but I'll try again from a different angle. I hope this helps. If I rent a tractor for a month at $10, which of the following statements is true? (a) I am renting a tractor and paying $10 per month. (b) I am renting a tractor for a month and paying $10. You say case (a) and assert that the price is $10 per month. So the price is quantified with respect to time. I say case (b) and assert that the price is $10. So the price is not quantitied with respect to time. Now replace "tractor" with "money-capital" in the above. In a circular flow model of simple reproduction case (b) is the natural interpretation because the money-capital is returned to capitalist accounts at the end of period (although, as this is a circular flow, it is immediately used to fund another period). Case (b), as I have demonstrated, is also dimensionally consistent with Sraffa's concept of prices, which are not quantitied with respect to time, and Sraffa's concept of the rate of profit, which is also not quantified with respect to time. Terms such as "rent", "borrow", "rental charge" etc. are not in my view good ways to describe the social relations that implement money-capital. I think it is time to acknowledge that there is no dimensional inconsistency, or conceptual problem, in the notion of the price of money-capital. If we go much further with this we will enter the realm of sophistry. Call r a "price" a "rental charge" or "grue", whichever takes your fancy. Best wishes, -Ian.
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