Re: [OPE-L] Question

From: Paul Cockshott (clyder@GN.APC.ORG)
Date: Sat Apr 14 2007 - 16:23:51 EDT

Relating to the debate below I would like to suggest that Alejandro Agafonow
be invited to join the OPE-L list, he has been debating these
same points on the Owen-Institute list and has some useful contributions
to make.
His email is Alejandro Agafonow []

Alejandro Agafonow is currently Associate Professor of Industrial Economics at
Antonio de Nebrija University (Madrid) and writes his PhD dissertation at
Complutense University of Madrid dealing with the impossibility of economic
calculation controversy. Also, he is honorary collaborator in the Department of
Applied Economics V at Complutense University and member of the Labour Theory of
Value and Post-capitalism Discussion Group regularly met in the same department.
His research interests are related with the genesis and development of Austrian
economics, the economic theory of market socialism and the normative frontiers
of economic efficiency in a democratic society.

Quoting Allin Cottrell <cottrell@WFU.EDU>:

> On Fri, 13 Apr 2007, Jerry Levy wrote:
> > As a way of understanding capitalism, I think it is idealist to
> > begin by asking what could happen in a non-existent,
> > hypothetical ('ideal-type') mode of production and then working
> > backwards to "see whether a capitalist economy will produce a
> > similar solution".
> This objection seems plausible, yet when you're examining a
> "designed system" it's impossible to avoid considerations of
> optimal design.  What, you say nobody designed capitalism?  Well,
> true, and nobody designed the human heart either.  Both are
> "merely" products of (blind) evolution.  So what might be a truly
> "designed system".  Something designed by a human designer, of
> course.  Beware, for here lurks true idealism!
> For a materialist, everything under the sun "just happened" (the
> result of a chain of material causation).  Yet some of the things
> that happened can be be said, in some sense, to be designed.
> Which ones?  Those that emerged via mutation-plus-selection.
> I can't expand further here, but for anyone wanting to pursue this
> idea, I recommend Daniel Dennett, "The Intentional Stance"
> Allin.

Paul Cockshott

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