[OPE-L:1975] Re: Re: Marx and some Marxists on "increasing misery"?

Paul Zarembka (zarembka@acsu.buffalo.edu)
Wed, 22 Dec 1999 12:00:19

On 12/22/99 at 11:52 AM, Ajit Sinha <ajitsinha@lbsnaa.ernet.in> said:

>Paul, this whole attempt is to deflect the issue, by suggesting that the
>so-called Marxists are on my side of the fence. I don't give a damn. None of
>your quotations even tries to refute my arguments or the evidence.

     Ajit's statement [OPE-L:1948] had been that Paul Samuelson is correct
in interpreting Marx as a proponent of increasing absolute misery and
"most of the serious historians of thought would agree" with Samuelson.

     In response to only that statement, Bernstein, Kautsky, Lenin,
Luxemburg, and Plekhavnov were offered by me as counter-examples with
credentials good enough to permit them to join the ranks of the "serious".
Two of them knew Marx and Engels personally. I guess I'm now unsure if
Ajit's original statement is still "on the table" or withdrawn, having
read about not giving a damn.

>As far as your Accumulation paper is concerned, it does not take into
>account that Marx assumed a positive rate of growth in population.

     Try "Population increase is Marx's principle avenue, but is hardly
the end of the story nor even the most important theoretically", and of
course my argument leading up to this sentence. Without footnotes the
paper is available at:

     Population increase was a major argument for Otto Bauer [his
"Accumulation of Capital", translated by J.E. King, HISTORY OF POLITICAL
ECONOMY, Vol. 18, no. 1, 1986, pp. 87-110] and criticized by Rosa
Luxemburg ["The 'New' Population Theory of Otto Bauer", a chapter of her
ANTI-CRITIQUE, pp. 107-135]. It could not be missed when studying the
question of accumulation.

Paul Z.

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