[OPE-L:4369] Re: Brazilian diamonds and value

aramos@aramos.b (aramos@aramos.bo)
Wed, 12 Mar 1997 04:05:03 -0800 (PST)

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> Alejandro in ope-l 4356:

> > In Notes... Marx suggests that this process is
> > accomplished through modifications in the relationship between value-
> > substance (labor-time) and value-form (money).

> Michael W in ope-l 4363

> Could you send me the full reference for this, if you have it to hand?
> Thanks

--- I commented the relevant passage --showing how the modification in
the relationship between value-substance and value-form is
accomplished-- in ope-l 4258. If you missed it, I can forward you
the comment off-list. I any case, I am including the passage
in this post.

--- Re your post about "scarcity", I am afraid that I missed it. Could
you forward it to me?


The passage of "Notes on Wagner" is:

Second, if the price of grain rises after a bad harvest,
then its *value* rises, for one thing, because a given amount
of labour is *contained in a smaller product*; for another
thing, its *selling price* rises by much more still.

What has this to do with my theory of value? The more the
grain is *sold over its value*, the more other commodities,
whether in their natural form or in money form, will be sold
*under their value* by exactly the same amount, even if their
own money price does *not* fall. The *total value* remains
the same, even if the expression of this *total value* in its
entirety were to increase in money, in other words, if the
sum total of "exchange value" acording to Mr. Wagner were to

This is the case if we assume that the *drop in price* of the
total of the other commodities does not cover the *over-value
price* (excess price) of the grain. But in this case, the
exchange value of money has fallen *pro tanto* beneath its
value; the total value of all commodities does not only
remain the *same*, but even remains the same *expressed in
money*, if money is included among the commodities.

Further: the rise in price of grain beyond the increase in
its value determined by the bad harvest will in any case be
smaller in the "social state" than it is with present-day
profiteering in grain.

"Notes on Wagner", Collected Works, 24, p. 537;
a different translation in "Marginal Notes on Wagner",
included in "Value: Studies by Karl Marx", Translated by A.
Dragstedt, New Park Pub., London, 1976, p. 207.