[OPE-L:7307] [OPE-L:837] Re: Re: Re: Re: abstract labour

Rakesh Bhandari (bhandari@phoenix.Princeton.EDU)
Wed, 7 Apr 1999 04:49:15 -0400 (EDT)

Ajit writes:
> Mattick
>is simply mixing up the problem of accumulation and growth and the
>problem of allocation of labor.

Which means you didn't understand the quote; the market only seems to have
the fetishistic power to allocate labor towards the end of an equilibrium
in supply and demand. The market cannot do so unless the rate of
accumulation is sustained which itself requires a favorable relation
between surplus and necessary labor in the production process: "It is then
the accumulating part of the surplus value that may allows for the
exchangeability of all commodities and therewith for an apparent indentity
of supply and demand--an identity not indicating an equilibrium of
production and consumption, however, but only a relationship between
necessary and surplus labor assuring the enlarged reproduction of capital."

This may be a pseudo profundity but you should make some attempt to
understand this and part one of Marx's *Capital* before you pass judgement.
Mattick's argument serves a critique of the bourgeois economist's focus on
the market as itself an equilibrium mechanism while setting our eyes on the
the conditions in the hidden abode of production that must be met for the
market to have this apparent power.

The analysis can be separated into
>three stages. (1) allocation of labor within a simple commodity
>producing economy,

If you look in the festschrift to Robert Heilbroner, ed. Ron Blackwell, you
will find a critque by Martha Campbell that Marx ever worked at this stage
of analysis. Just because there is no wage labor in the opening does not
mean its existence is not presumed; the concepts have to be developed first
to introduce it, viz. the difference between use value and exchange value.
After all, labor power is analyzed in terms of that duality.

No body is claiming that the
>equilibrium is achieved or the system stays there.

No but you are not explaining why the law of value works like a law of
gravity only in the sense of a house falling upon our ears.

We will leave the discussion of the equilibrium concept in the reproduction
schemes to another day. Have you seen CJ Arthur, ed. The Circulation of

Yours, Rakesh