[OPE-L] Guerrero's text on LTV and double transformation

From: ope-admin@ricardo.ecn.wfu.edu
Date: Mon Sep 03 2007 - 10:14:04 EDT

---------------------------- Original Message ----------------------------
Subject: Guerrero's text on LTV and double transformation
From:    "Ascanio Bernardeschi" <ascaniober@tiscali.it>
Date:    Mon, September 3, 2007 9:55 am
To:      glevy@PRATT.EDU

Dear Prof.,
I am not a member of the list. Can I intervene In the debate?
I apologize for the bad English. I have just read Diego Guerrero's text
"The labour theory of value, and the double transformation problem",
first draft January 2007, but not the relate discussion on the OPE-List.
I excuses me, then, if the topics of this flash has already been
considered in the List by other partecipants.
I begin explaining what I agree with Diego:
i. A very general formulation who illustrate many "transformations", in
horizontal or in vertical sense in table 1, and therefore interesting
individual, direct, production or market values/prices expressed or in
terms of labor time or in monetary terms.
ii. The importance of market prices and the necessity that such prices
measure the value of constant and variable capital. Thais because, when
we deal prices, profit rate etc, we are at a low abstraction's level in
which the behaviors of capitalists (for istance when they must decide to
migrate or not from an industrial branch to an other or to introduce or
not a technological innovation) is on the basis of their perception of
the phenomena and not onthe basis of theoretical outlines, they are or
not adeguate to represent the reality.
iii. Monetary price is considered the external necessary measure of the
immanent value's measure and therefore he agree, about this point, with
the framework of Moseley, Wolf, Callari, Roberts, Rodrėguez-Herrera,
Itoh etc: "input"'s value is deducible from monetary payments data, in
alternative to von Bortkiewicz' approach.
iv. The consideration that, considering a dynamic system, may be useful,
depending on the research requirements, a simultaneous approach too (one
"instantaneous photo" or one sequence of photoes). But, I add, depending
on a different surveying's requirement, I could necessitate the "film"
that reproduces the movement.

Now what instead I don't agree:
a) Guerrero indicate the simultaneous solution as more general than that
temporalist one (TSSI). It is instead easy to demonstrate, that in a
static system, after a number of periods, solution TSSI converges
towards simultaneous one. The last formuation, then could be considered
a special case of the temporalist one, which resolves or the dynamic
case or the static one.
b) In the simultaneous solution prices and average profit rate are
determined at the same time, in thais differing from the marxian
solution, which determines before the profit rate and subsequently
production prices. Moreover, even asserting in a conceptual way that
input's prices don't have to be transformed (they are already known), in
the mathematical formulation they are determined simultaneously and
therefore they are not known before the transformation. On this issue is
not clear the difference with the solution of von Bortkiewicz. For the
case of different rates of profit in different industries, Freeman
elaborated too a much general solution, coherent with the marxian
formulation, based on  historical costs of constant and variable capital.
c) Guerrero prefers replacement costs to historical ones. But just
because - like argued in point ii - behaviors and choices of capitalists
prescind from the requirements of the total reproduction (that they
cannot know) and are based on effective monetary expenditures, I think
at this level of abstraction the mesuration of inputs must happen by the
historical costs. In short, prescinding from the obstacles for the
migration of capitals from a branch to the other of the economy, and
therefore in the hypothesis of production prices, the capitalists feel
themselves in "equilibrium" if their effective, historical monetary
advances are remunerated with a percentage at least equal to the average
rate of profit. When a capitalist have to take a decision, he do it on
the basis of prices that he know, that are the payd costs in order to
acquire means of production and labour power, the prices of the product
calculated on that basis and confronted with prices that instead can be
realized on the market. Mutatis mutandis one analogous argument is valid
in presence of profit rates differentiated.

In solidarity, Ascanio Bernardeschi

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