[OPE-L:4767] Re: Parsimony

Paul Cockshot (wpc@cs.strath.ac.uk)
Mon, 14 Apr 1997 09:20:27 -0700 (PDT)

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Mike W
> Value cannot vary quantitatively independent of Price, because
> Price is the only actual quantitative manifestation of Value. (This does
> not mean that we should, parsimoniously, collapse Value into Price. They
> are both needed to adequately conceptualise capitalism.)
Paul C
Are you using the word actual in its French sense as 'presently existing'?

Leaving that aside, it seems to me that you are simply introducing this
as a definition of value, if on the other hand you define value to
be the mean time required to make something then the possibility of
a deviation between the two is evident. Such deviation between
price and value can either be accidental, or systematic. Accidental
deviations cause individual sales of say corn flakes to take place
a different prices in different shops, systematic deviations cause
products like oil to consistently sell for more than their mean
labour content.

You are of course at liberty to have a theory of price and value
which specifies that there can be no quantitative variation between
the two, but the claim that this in some way represented Marx's
view is as strange as the attempt to paint him as a philosophical