[OPE-L:6316] RE: Re: Re: Historical, real and current costs

andrew kliman (Andrew_Kliman@CLASSIC.MSN.COM)
Fri, 20 Mar 98 17:41:13 UT

A reply to the PIAF:

From: owner-ope-l@galaxy.csuchico.edu on behalf of Gerald Levy
Sent: Wednesday, March 18, 1998 3:38 AM
To: ope-l@galaxy.csuchico.edu
Cc: multiple recipients of list
Subject: [OPE-L] Re: Re: Historical, real and current costs

Jerry quotes me:

> First, I should apologize for my lack of clarity. I didn't mean that
> "value increases when no labour has been performed." I meant only that
> as I interpret Marx, the timing of the two may be diachronic.

and comments:

"But, the example that you are using clearly means, given the
specification and assumptions of the example, that value increased without
any expenditure of living or dead labour."

I disagree. The value increases only because living labor is expended, and
the value of the output, in labor-time terms, equals the labor-time expended
(since there's no constant capital). There's a "delayed reaction," that's

Jerry: "Andrew responded to me in a somewhat less charitable way than he did
with Mike W:

> See how easy it is to find someone guilty of internal inconsistency?
> You have the makings of a great economist!

"To begin with, this response seems unnecessarily sarcastic."

Well, I thought your initial interjection:

"Since no direct or indirect labour is being performed on the widgets after
5 p.m, you are asserting that the additional value created after working
time was created by *nature* (the Sun in particular)."

was unnecessarily confrontational and dismissive. Instead of telling me what
I am asserting, you might have written "Since ... , I don't understand how
this differs from the notion that .... Could you please explain?" This would
have allowed me to *explain* what I'm saying instead of having to *defend* it
to your satisfaction.

My responses were differentially charitable because I was anticipating
differential reactions. In light of subsequent events, I think I was right
about this.

As for Jerry's comment about who's an economist, that wasn't my point. My
point was that Jerry's method of "demonstrating" "internal inconsistency" is
the method of the great economists who have "demonstrated" Marx's "internal

Jerry: "PS: since the whole issue of the MELT (as Mike W noted) is tied to
this thread, let me note that in Andrew's example we have a one-commodity
economy. Under those circumstances why would there be any money at all?
I.e. why wouldn't the producers receive compensation for their labour-time via

This confuses "money" with "medium of circulation." As Marx notes several
times, even in the absence of an exchange, money exists in an ideal capacity
as "measure of value." And paper notes could exist as a "hoard," and be
preferred as a hoard to chunches, because the latter rot quickly.


Andrew Kliman