[OPE-L:7300] [OPE-L:829] Re: Re: Horsepower

C. J. Arthur (cjarthur@pavilion.co.uk)
Mon, 5 Apr 1999 21:22:49 +0100

>> It could be said - and this might suit a C Part One context -
>> that it is
>> because human labour involves what Lukacs called 'teleological
>> positing'
>> (Simon Mohun says this in his Value Debates collection).
>> However this runs into the problem that in capitalist production
>> the most
>> substantial part of the workforce have no such control over the
>> purpose and
>> method of work but just execute orders.
>> So I prefer to locate the key difference in the fact that only
>> labour has
>> the subjective potential to overturn the relations of production
>> and
>> capital therefore faces it as a special case of the things it has
>> to
>> 'exploit' to produce a surplus product.
>> I would locate the treatment of abstract labour in this context
>> too in that
>> before it appears as abstract in exchange it is already treated
>> abstractly
>> as a universal resource/problem by capital.
>> Especially interesting I think is whether we agree with Marx in
>I don't know if I understand everything said above. But it seems to
>me that you are rejecting the arguments pointing toward labor as
>cause of value. If value, that is the labor time needed to produce
>the commodities, is a social relation, then the question is what
>kind of social relation it is? Does it represent the relation of
>social division of labor or does it represent the relation between
>capital and labor? Cheers, ajit sinha
In the first instance it represents the relation between capital and
labour; however since capital is defined in terms of the social division of
production between capitals value magnitudes are determmined by the
relation between the labours exploited by the various capitals. I have
coined the expression 'socially necessary exploitation time' for this.
Chris Arthur