[OPE-L:742] Re: LTV an assumption?

rakesh bhandari (djones@uclink.berkeley.edu)
Fri, 15 Dec 1995 02:58:33 -0800

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I went back a few posts. Here is a quick question to the following:

>> > a system of exchange establishes a relationship of
>> > *equivalence*, not *equality*, the difference being precisely that
>> > one cannot infer from the former that elements of an equivalence set
>> > contain any other "common property" (much less "common, homogeneous
>> > property") other than that which placed them in the set--in this
>> > case, paraphrasing Marx, that x boot-polish, y silk, and z gold are
>> > all equivalent in being exchanged for a quarter of wheat.
>> >
>> > For example, Oslo, Norway, Avesta, Sweden, and Kronshtadt, Russia are
>> > equivalent in lying within a certain distance of the 60th parallel.
>> > But even if the parallel ran right through the middle of each of them, one
>> > could not conclude that these entities share some other "common
>> > element."

What happens if we say that what all commodites have in common is that they
are all produced and only produced in order to be exchanged for the
universal equivalent? The common substance commodities now share is not
only that they are products of labor (true by definition) and that they
happen to exchange with the universal equivalent (what is what defines the
equivalent set), but that they are actually produced in the hundreds of
millions for *only* this purpose. Could another common substance be
discovered if we probe why commodities are produced in order and only in
order to be members of a equivalent set in which everything is exchangeable
against, in Marx's example, a quarter of wheat?