[OPE-L:1609] Lapides, etc.

Thu, 28 Oct 1999 19:26:03 EDT

Dear OPE,
     Just a quick note on the Marx-Lebowitz-Lapides discussion.
     I think there is more agreement than is apparent, and I am
convinced that email listservs cause small differences to seem
much larger than they are! Mike is not saying that Marx's
Capital is flawed, or suspect, as a basis for revolutionary
working class politics; only that the active side of working-
class struggle is implicit there, and needs to be brought
forward. Kenneth is not (I think) saying that everything we
need to know is already in Capital, and that anyone who says
otherwise is a renegade. The 6 vs. 4 issue is way overblown,
and is at cross purposes with the real task of continuing to
develop political economy on the foundations laid down by Marx.
     Also, I know it is inconsequential in the larger scheme of
things, but since references are being constantly made to
Science & Society, I would like to keep the record straight.
We asked Lapides to review the Lebowitz book *before* Lebowitz's
comment on Lapides' article came in. When that comment was in
hand, we naturally asked Lapides if he would like to reply, but
thought that a reply to Lebowitz *and* a review of Lebowitz'
book would be, as Kenneth indicated, "too many turns at bat""
(or some such phrase). Clearly continuation of the discussion
in our Communications section would have allowed Kenneth to
address the issues more fully than a 1000-word book review. But
no review was ever received, and therefore (contra the impression
held by Paul Z.), no review was rejected for publication.
     I am sorry if Kenneth was not pleased with the choice we
imposed between review and reply; in the event, neither materialized.
I am also sorry that Mike is not pleased that we never found a
reviewer for his book! I don't have records going that far back,
but I assume we tried again, but nothing apparently came in. (Sigh.)
I know you "can't please everybody," but sometimes I wonder if it is
possible to please *anybody.*
     For the record, we *do* have a review in hand of Lapides' new
book. I am waiting for final corrections. I do hope *this one*
comes in. If it does, perhaps we can use it as a communication,
and get some of the excellent discussion on OPE into print in
response to it. But that, of course, will be up to our entire
editorial collective.
    Best to all,
    David Laibman, Editor, Science & Society

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