[OPE-L:3110] RE: assumptions, assumptions, assumptions

andrew kliman (Andrew_Kliman@msn.com)
Tue, 24 Sep 1996 09:00:31 -0700 (PDT)

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In ope-l 3107, Allin wrote

"I'm not sure how productive this debate is. It seems clear to me -- as I
suppose it does to Jerry -- that in the quotation above Marx is not _assuming_
v=0 in the way Andrew has done in some of his exercises: he is simply pointing
out a limiting case in passing."

And how has my usage differed? I too have been working out the implications
of a limiting case. I can't do it in passing, because I'm not all that smart,
because the context is more complex, and especially because there's extended
discussion of some examples that make this assumption. But so what?

The other main way I've used v = 0 is the one that Jerry sanctions: as part
of refuting a claim that covers the v = 0 case.

Anyway, what is at issue is whether Marx ever assumed v = 0 in *any* context,
and whether it is legitimate to assume v = 0 for *any* reason other than the
one Jerry sanctions. You probably have to remember the early stages of this
debate, many moons ago, to appreciate fully that this is what is at issue, not
any discrepancy beeen my usage of v = 0 and Marx's.

Jerry DENIES that in this passage Marx is assuming v = 0 in *any* way.

I agree with Allin that this debate is not very productive. But I have been
defending some principles that are important to me, and will continue to do

The right to think thoughts that don't reflect the world as it exists.

The right to *investigate* matters my way, without interference.

Recognition that illustrations and examples are to be evaluated differently
from behavioral or functional models.

The right to do theoretical work that does not, and is not intended to, build
models of the operation of capitalism.

Andrew Kliman