Re: [OPE-L] questions on the interpretation of labour values

From: ajit sinha (sinha_a99@YAHOO.COM)
Date: Sun Feb 25 2007 - 14:13:28 EST

--- Diego Guerrero <diego.guerrero@CPS.UCM.ES> wrote:

> Ajit:
> That's good! This is the only way to proceed. Now
> three questions:(1) Do (wH), (pH), (mH)stand for say
> 100, 200, and 300 hours of labor? And if so, then do
> w, p, and m stand for $100, $200, and $300?
> _______________________________________
> Diego:
> Yes.
My heart is now sinking like a rock in water about
getting anywhere. But I'll still try. I'm guessing
that by "market prices" you mean prices that you
OBSERVE in a given market. So if we find that a blue
jeans is sold for $100 then you say it's "market
value" is equal to 100 hours of labor. Leaving aside
what "market value" could mean, could you tell us on
what basis you could say something like that?
Furthermore, since "prices of production" I guess, in
your scheme, cannot be observed, what meaning can be
given to the statement that 'if prices of production
of a blue jeans is $200, then its "production value"
would be 200 hours of labor? And same for direct value
and direct prices--whatever they may mean.
> _______________________________________
> (2) What is the difference between direct values,
> production
> values and market values and similarly with prices?
> _______________________________________
> Everybody knows the difference between direct
> prices, production prices and
> market price.
Well, then, of course, I'm not part of "everybody".
Please don't give me quotation from Marx or anybody,
just tell me what these concepts mean to you in your

> (3)Where does euro or dollar come from? Remember!
> you
> are in your theoretical world, where you have
> apparently taken a set of production equations for
> the
> production of your commodities and wages for labor
> etc. If you have specified a relationship of this
> system with euro or dollar then make it explicit.
> Otherwise, you have no option than to take something
> like gold or silver, which is produced as a
> commodity
> in your system of production, as a measure of your
> money variable. Your turn now! Cheers, ajit sinha
> _______________________________________
> Well, I am afraid that the answer to this will not
> be easily accepted. But,
> first, remember that I am not using the MELT
> exactly: for every commodity I
> translate from labour to money by using "the
> average, social productivity of
> labour in terms of money", which "coincides as a
> practical result with the
> 'monetary expression of value' (Duménil and Foley,
> 2006) or the inverse of
> what Fine, Lapavitsas and Saad-Filho (2004) calls
> the 'labor expression of
> money'."
Again, instead of giving a straight answer to a
straight question, you are quoting other people. I
don't care about what other people say, I want to know
how in your theory a particular entity figures in. You
should know it best and should be able to explain it
best. Why quote anyone else? You say, "for every
commodity I translate from labour to money by using
"the average, social productivity of labour in terms
of money", please explain how do you do this.

In any case, let me guess what you are trying to say.
You say that you take the dollar value of the net
output produced in a year and make it equivalent to
the total direct labor spent in a year. The ratio of
total direct labor and total dollar value of the net
output you DEFINE as "labor value of money". Now
remember, your dollar value is based on the "market
prices". So your labor value of money can only give
you your "market value". This is nothing but calling a
person John and Jack at the same time. But it does not
carry any more information about the person than that
John has a nick name and people close to him like to
call him Jack. Where do you go from here? Cheers, ajit

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