[OPE-L:1450] Re: Temporality vs simultaneity

riccardo bellofior (bellofio@cisi.unito.it)
Tue, 12 Mar 1996 03:40:31 -0800

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At 2:03 12-03-1996 -0800, Massimo De Angelis wrote:
>Riccardo, in ****principle***** anything can happen - get the
>fiction for the sake of the argument?? The point I was
>making was challenging Bruce's assertion that the "temporal
>determined" price is a slice of the simultanous solution BECAUSE if you
>keep iterating you' find that result. This is true only IF you
>keep iterating AND keep all other assumptions equal. THhe point is -
>and I think THIS IS A CRUCIAL POINT THAT simultaneists should address
>- the point is that with temporality you can change the assumptions
>between period 3 and 4 etc. AND STILL HAVE value = prices etc. etc.
>That is, you can have technological change, a strike wave, etc
>affecting value determination but still you have the basic equalities
>mainteined in each period. This, whatever the assumptions you make,
> as long as you **assume** capitalist class relations.

So what? That prices =- values is true (BY DEFINITION) only because of your
assumptions. It is an instance of paetitio principii. And I need to
understand your hypotheses on 'time'. Why your temporality should impose
change between one period and the other? And if you temporality is neutral
on the issue, you must presuppone nothing happens when calculating prices
and the rate of profits.

>although Bruce is right to say that if you keep all unchanged then
>the TA converges to SA, he is not right to claim that this shows
>that in general TA's results represent a "slice" of SA results.

Well, *I* do not find any difficulty in imagining the value categories even
BEHIND the simultaneous solution. But I suspect that the same simultaneist
would say that the problem is not that labour values (on any definition)
permits to calculate prices (of production, or whatever), but that this
reference to labour values, to be relevant, should be one that it CANNOT BE
DISPENSED WITH (I made this point already, but it does not seem to interest
anybody, so maybe I'm wrong). Now, if the TA converges to the SA, and the
data from which you calculate both solutions are the same, you must have
*other* reasons to stick with the labour theory of value. And the reason
cannot be the introduction of changes which are completely outside the
scope of the analytical problem you are dealing with.

>On the contrary, the SA's results are a particular case (in which
>nothing changes after period 2).

If something changes between one period and another, well, you may simply
have 'shifting' centers of gravity. Can't a Neo-Ricardian accept that,
still holding to the SA? He would simply say that in another part of the
theory the shifting in the conditions of production will be explained,
somehow. Their model is the 'core' because it is simpler than yours in
which anything goes (sorry: anything could happen).

>Gotta run. I am sure we'll continue discussion in Boston.

You can bet on it.


Riccardo Bellofiore e-mail: bellofio@cisi.unito.it
Department of Economics Tel: (39) -35- 277505 (direct)
University of Bergamo (39) -35- 277501 (dept.)
Piazza Rosate, 2 (39) -11- 5819619 (home)
I-24129 Bergamo Fax: (39) -35- 249975