[OPE-L] Question

From: Jurriaan Bendien (adsl675281@TISCALI.NL)
Date: Mon Mar 26 2007 - 14:45:00 EDT

When Marx begins to sketch in the first chapter of Cap. Vol. 3 how the law
of value would assert itself in capitalism as the unity of production and
circulation, he writes:

"But the capitalist can sell the commodity at a profit even if he sells it
at less than its value. As long as its sale price is above its cost price,
even if below its value, a part of the surplus-value contained in it is
always realized, i.e. a profit is made (...) The basic law of capitalist
competition, which political economy has so far failed to grasp, the law
that governs the general rate of profit and the so-called prices of
production determined by it, depends, as we shall see, on this difference
between the value and the cost price of commodities, and the possibility
deriving from this of selling commodities below their value at a profit."
(Cap. Vol. 3, Pelican edition, p. 127-128).

The "difference between the value and the cost price of commodities" is
presumably the (potential) surplus-value they have, and the cutting edge of
capitalist competition is to "sell commodities below their value at a
profit". The question however is, what "value" does Marx have in mind here?
My interpretation is that he means the socially established value for that
commodity, namely that value, which represents the average socially
necessary labour-time currently required for its production. Is this


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