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

From: Pen-L Fred Moseley (fmoseley@MTHOLYOKE.EDU)
Date: Tue Feb 27 2007 - 22:57:26 EST

Quoting Howard Engelskirchen <howarde@TWCNY.RR.COM>:

> I don't think point 1 is correct, Fred.  That's one thing that Michael
> Heinrich has right in his article on capital in general.  He argues that
> total social capital depends on competition  -- e.g. equalization of profit
> rates.  So if analysis in Book III depends on competition and the analysis
> of Book I doesn't, then total social capital doesn't work for both.   Total
> social capital is appropriate for the analysis of capital as money capital
> and real capital, a theme that runs through Part V of Book III.  But this
> analysis presuppposes the equalization of rates of profit by means of
> competition.  Perhaps the distinction gets obscured insofar as the circuit
> of money capital is taken as the framework for analysis.
> On the other hand, this is not to endorse Heinrich's critique of capital in
> general.

Hi Howard,

I am not saying that both Volume 1 and Volume 3 are about the total
social capital.  I am saying that Volume 1 is about the total social
capital (the determination of the total surplus-value), and Volume 3 is
about individual capitals (the division of the total surplus-value into
individual parts).

I had extensive discussions with Michael about this point in Berlin
last June.  We disagree about the definition of capital in general, but
he agrees with the above formulation of Volume 1 and Volume 3.
Although he also accepts the usual critique that Marx “failed to
transform the inputs”, so he thinks that Marx failed in his attempt to
determine the total surplus-value prior to its individual parts.  But
that is a separate point.  He at least agreed that this is what Marx
tried to do – determine the total surplus-value in Volume 1 and then
determined individual parts of surplus-value in Volume 3.  Michael can
of course speak for himself, but this is the way I understood our
discussions last summer.


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