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

From: ajit sinha (sinha_a99@YAHOO.COM)
Date: Mon Mar 26 2007 - 08:34:50 EDT

Just so that no misunderstanding is left hanging, let
me take up your last poit first. To my comment:
> "You also must have noticed that in your latest
> "sequencial" determination, you did not start with a
> given M."
You reply:
Implicitly, M was taken as given, because C and V were
explicitly taken
as given, and M = C + V, as I have said many times.  I
was trying to
present a gvery brief summaryh of Marxfs logic of
determination, without having to repeat all the steps
every time.
Your above statement is another proof of your
consistent circular reasoning and not an outcome of
brief as opposed to elaborate reasoning. Look at your
own sequence of equations. Your (C+V) = M measure can
appear only as the second equation and not the first.
Bcause the second equation requres S, which does not
require M but had to be derived prior to derivation of
R, which requires M. This is a question of logic and
not what you implicitly assume or not. Try to start
with your second equation and see if your sequencial
reasoning will work. Your three sequential equations
are exactly the same as the well established
"Sraffian" reading of Marx. But the Sraffians have
argued that your equation (2) gives the incorrect
measure of the rate of profits and thus an incorrect
measure of the prices of production or your eq.(3).
You simply cannot start with M unless you are prepared
to be tripped at the very first step.
Now to your another point. You say:

> No, because the two definitions of Ln are not the
> same.  The Sraffian
> interpretation of Marxfs definition of Ln is the
> labor-time required
> to produce the means of subsistence (Lms).  My
> interpretation of
> Marxfs definition of Ln is the labor-time required
> to produce a money
> equivalent to the variable capital, i.e. equal to
> the money wages paid
> to workers (Lw = V / m).
So first m was defined as MELT, which apparently
stands for 'money equivatent of labor time". So by
definition if one knows m (and we are assuming that
God knows it and had given its value to Marx and
probably Marx passed it on to Fred)one can translate
any data in labor-time units to monetary units by
simply multiplying it by m. Now Fred tells me that he
also likes to go from right to left on the same
equation. So now, if you have any data given in money
terms, you can divide it my m, and voila! you got your
value of the variables in labor-time units. So you
need not look at the production to get your
labor-values of anything. If the price of a ton of
iron happens to be $100 and Fred tells you that the
value of m is equal to $5 = 1 hour of labor, then all
you have to do is to divide 100/5 and declare the
labor-value of 1 ton of iron to be 20 hours of labor.
So now, with given value of m you can get all your
labor-values by simply dividing the prices (or when it
comes to aggregates, all aggragate monetary data) by m
and get the labor-values. But again, as Fred should
know, if you divide an equation on both sides by any
constant (provided it is a real number and not zero or
infinity)you get no more information than the original
equation. You can keep going right to left and left to
right on the same equation and declare that you don't
walk in a circle. But the rest of the world knows that
it means the same thing. I'm now quite tired of this
thing and also I have to work on my seminar of the 4th
of April. So if you still think that your reasoning
has no problem, then well, good luck to you! Cheers,
ajit sinha

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