[OPE-L:4844] Re: Sraffa's Non-Proof

Ajit Sinha (ecas@cc.newcastle.edu.au)
Wed, 23 Apr 1997 03:37:20 -0700 (PDT)

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At 02:18 AM 4/22/97 -0700, Andrew Kliman wrote:

>Ajit's claims are false.
>Sraffa's physical data are
>280qr. wheat + 12 t. iron --> 575 qr. wheat
>120qr. wheat + 8 t. iron --> 20 t. iron
>Imagine that, at the time of input, the money price of iron is $15/ton and the
>money price of wheat is $1/quarter. Thus, each ton of iron at that time is
>exchangeable for 15 quarters of wheat. Imagine also that, at the time of
>output, the money price of iron is $14.85/ton and the money price of wheat is
>$0.99/quarter. Thus, each ton of iron is again (still) exchangeable for 15
>quarters of wheat.
>Given these input and output prices, along with the physical data, the rate of
>return on capital advanced will be 23.75% < 25%, in both sectors. The prices
>have fallen by 1%, and the profit rate is 5 0.000000e+00ss than Sraffa's.

Where the hell does the $ come from? Drops from heven? What is dollar here?
Is it gold? Then where is the production condition for gold here? In the two
commodity world, there can be only one price, which is 15:1 in this case.
Either of the two commodities could be picked up as the money commodity. No
place for something undefined called $ here.

Let me tell you a story: Austin Robinson reported that once Sraffa came to
him and tried to convience him for a case of incerting a comma in a
Ricardo's faded manuscript. When Robinson got convienced, then Sraffa argued
equally conviencingly about the case for its omission. Then Robinson
suggested why not decide the matter with a spin of a coin. At which,
according to Robinson, Sraffa was "profoundly shocked". This is too careful
a scholar you are dealing here with Andrew. There is a very very very remote
chance that he would make silly mistakes of the kind you are trying to
attribute to him, specially on p. 7 of a little book which took 30 years to
write. If you wanna find some mistakes in Sraffa, I would suggest go a bit
more deeper in the book. Cheers, ajit sinha