[OPE-L:2671] Re: More on abstract labour

Paul Cockshott (wpc@cs.strath.ac.uk)
Thu, 18 Jul 1996 06:20:24 -0700 (PDT)

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> 2) If the polymorphous quality of human labour-power is the real
>foundation of the abstruct labour in all the forms of societies, then can
>we not see the same ground for homogenious equality of expended labour-time
>regardless of educational or training costs of skill which differentiate
>the values of labour-power for complex labour-power in a (capitalist)
>market economy? The traditionally separate problems on the abstract vs
>concrete useful labour on the one hand, and complex vs simple labour may
>thus be solved from the same deeper recognition of fundamentally equal
>quality of human labour-power. In my view, this should be a logical ground
>for Marxian eglitarianism beyond the formal market order.

I agree with this. It is why I prefer the method of counting trained
labour in terms of basic labour plus an allowance for time acquiring

We have to be careful to distinguish between trained labour as a cost
to society - it requires time allocated to training - and the rewards
for trained labour - which should in principle be no different from those
of any other type of work. Since in a capitalist economy there is no
explicit labour time calculus, labour is represented by the wage, thus
the issues of its social cost and the rewards to individuals become
Paul Cockshott