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

From: Diego Guerrero (diego.guerrero@CPS.UCM.ES)
Date: Tue Apr 03 2007 - 14:04:08 EDT

Hi, Ajit,

Mi comments below:

----- Original Message -----
From: "ajit sinha" <sinha_a99@YAHOO.COM>
Sent: Monday, April 02, 2007 3:14 PM
Subject: Re: [OPE-L] questions on the interpretation of labour values

> Since my seminar is more or less under control, I can
> indulge in some recreational activities!


As it seems that you are in the playtime at school it is not surprising that
you cannot see what the numbers are. Your example is erroneous because your
numbers are arbitrary. If you believe that I compute prices in that way you
are completely wrong. You need additional information for that. For
instance, if the 500 hours of direct labour are split in 300 hours spent in
the production of X and 200 in the production of Y, and also the output is X
= 60 units and Y = 200 units, and also we need 80 Y por producing 200 Y,
then the prices would be 1,67 for X and 0,33 for Y in your first case; and
2,083 for X
and 0,33 for Y in your second case (when 1/5 of X is necessary in the
production of 1 X). Likewise unit values would be 8.33 and 1.67 in the first
case, and 10.467 and 1.67 in the second case.

Direct labour would then be (60 x 5 + 200 x 1) = 500 in both cases, and GDP
100 in both cases. And the melt would be in both cases 1/5.

What you don't understand is that
the value of the melt is not arbitrarily determined a priori, but a result
of the real conditions of production and circulation that can be only known
period we are analyzing is completed.



> Dear Diego, Since you claim that I don't understand a
> word of Marx, let me show you what your understanding
> of Marx amounts to.

> Let us say the total direct labor in a year is 500
> hours and the net nominal GDP is $100. So the value of
> your MELT happens to be $1 = 5hrs of labor.
> Let us suppose that a commodity X is produced by 2
> units of Y and 5 hours of labor. Let us also assume
> that price of Y happens to be $5 per unit of Y. Now
> according you your theory the labor value of X must be
> equal to $10xm + 5 hours of direct labor, which is
> equal to 55 hours of labor. Now if somebody asks you,
> what is the price of X, you would say no problem, it
> is 55/5 = $11! The question is: do you have any theory
> of price that will ensure that the price of X will be
> indeed $11? The answer is no. Now let me make it
> furthermore clear to you, what it means:
> Let us suppose that X requires not only Y but also X
> for its production. Let us suppose it takes 1/5 units
> of X, 2 units of Y and 5 hours of labor to produce 1
> unit of X. Let us suppose that price of X happens to
> be say $10 per unit and price of y is $5. Now
> according to your theory, the labor value of X must be
> equal to (10x(1/5)x5 + 2x5x5 + 5) = 65 hours of labor.
> Now if somebody asks you what is the price of X, your
> formula would suggest that it must be 65/m = $13,
> which contradices the price of X you had assumed,
> which was $10. So going back and forth with your m can
> give you nothing but nonsense. Cheers, ajit sinha

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