[OPE-L:6438] Re: [OPE] What is prior? Response to Paul C

Gerald Levy (glevy@pratt.edu)
Wed, 8 Apr 1998 15:17:39 -0400 (EDT)

Alan wrote on Wed, 8 Apr:

> Hmmm again. Sorry, but I can't resist this.
> If I walk into a shop and see cauliflowers on sale for $1 each, they have a
> price, no? But they haven't been sold yet. And if I walk around the shop
> and add up the prices of everything, then the total stock of the shop has a
> price, no? But that hasn't been sold yet, either. Now if I walk around all
> the shops in Greenwich, and add up the prices of all the stock in all the
> shops, then the total sales stock of Greenwich has a price, no? But none of
> this has been sold, either.

Hmmm. Sorry, but I can't resist this.

When you walk into the shop and see the cauliflowers on sale for $1 you
don't know whether the store owner has set the price of $1 artificially
high with the expectation that the bargaining process will drive the price
down. In other words, you don't know whether s/he expects to sell the
cauliflower for $1 , $0.50, $0.25 or anywhere in between.

Do you remember the scene where Humphrey Bogart was bargaining for the
piece of cloth in "Casablanca"? What was its "real" price(s)? What was
its monetary value prior to sale? $1.00? ... $0.75? ...$0.50? Is there
any way of knowing this *before* there is a market transaction?

In solidarity, Jerry