[OPE-L:4994] Re: ideal vs real value

Paul Cockshott (wpc@cs.strath.ac.uk)
Tue, 13 May 1997 10:01:10 -0700 (PDT)

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> > People selling commodities may have estimates of what they will
> > sell for, these estimates may justly be called ideal, but such
> > estimates are distinct both from the value of the commodity and
> > what it actually sells for.
> Gerry:
> But, it is not only the estimates by capitalists which are "ideal." For a

> commodity to have "real value", it must _actually_ have use-value and
> exchange-value. This validation only takes place via the act of
> exchange.

Paul C:
Not so. Validation prior to production also takes place via market
research. This may not be entirely accurate, but the fact that both
market reseach and final sales both validate something, indicates
that the use value, as well as the value exists independent of, and
prior to sale.
> > 2. The immediate determinants of the level of profit are quite distinct
> > from the determinants of surplus value. Profit is an accounting
> > and the aggregate level of profit in the economy is determined as a
> > balancing item by the sum of <snip>
> Well ... I don't think Marx viewed profit as only an "accounting
> category."
It is an accounting category, and Marx's introduction of it in the
circuit m-c-m' mirrors accounting practice.

> > 3. The effect of variations in these immediate determinants of profits
> > to allow profits to rise independently of surplus value - for
> > the short run effect of an increase in investment is to raise
> > goods prices above their values. Then a rise in profits is not
> > immediately associated with a rise in the amount of surplus labour
> > performed.
> I think that variations in the mass of profits and surplus-value are
> "independent" *and* _interdependent_.
Sounds good, but wheres the meat. What in practice are the
causal mechanisms by which accounting profits in the economy as
a whole depend upon surplus value. I am not denying that there
is such a dependency, but demonstrating it is another matter.