# [OPE-L:5552] Re: Re: Re: the assumptions necessary for the two equalities to hold?

From: Rakesh Narpat Bhandari (rakeshb@Stanford.EDU)
Date: Sat May 12 2001 - 00:16:44 EDT

```re Fred's 5551

>
>MY REPLY:
>
>1.  Rakesh, you seem to agree here that the equations I presented in my
>last post from Volume 1 of Capital (reproduced above) accurately express
>Marx's theory of the determination of the magnitude of surplus-value in
>Volume 1, right?

right.

>
>This seems to be different from what you have said in previous posts, in
>which you argued (as I understood it) that S is determined by the
>equation:
>
>	S = value - K
>
>and that S is determined this way in both Volume 1 and Volume 3.
>
>For example, you said in (5390): "The magnitude of surplus-value is always
>total value, as monetarily expressed, minus cost price.  THAT'S WHAT IT IS
>IN VOLUME 1; THAT'S WHAT IT IS IN VOLUME 3.  (emphasis added)

ok, not seeing the problem yet.

>
>But your equation above implies that S depends in part on C (since K = C +
>V), which directly contradicts the equations from Volume 1 that I have
>presented.

by depend on c, I mean that  s actually depends on whether the means
of production were bought above or below value (assuming that labor
transfers gratis their value in toto to the output).

>So your equation cannot express the determination of S in
>Volume 1.
>
>Rakesh, have you changed your mind on this point, or have I missed
>something?

missing the contradiction. For any one branch, total value could be
higher if say the means of prod were bought below value. Surplus
value is still that total value, as monetarily expressed, minus cost
price.

But such a concern cannot arise as long as Marx is assuming that the
price of the means of production is proportional to their value.

That is, since Marx assumes in vol 1 that price is proportional to
value (P<>V) and specifically the value of the money advanced as
constant capital is the same
as the value of the consumed means of production as they appear in
the final product, it is clear that only the surplus labor performed
by workers hired out of variable capital can be a source of surplus
value.

>
>2.  But now you say that these equations for the determination of the
>magnitude of surplus-value in Volume 1 ARE DROPPED IN VOLUME 3.  You do
>not say so explicitly in this post, but I presume you mean that the
>magnitude of surplus-value is determined in Volume 3 according to your
>equation above, right?

Not exactly. Value has always been the sum of indirect and direct
labor. But as long as Marx has been assuming that the price paid for
the means of production is proportional to the value transferred from
them, the only source of surplus value can be surplus labor.

>
>Let me make sure I understand this: are you arguing that in Volume 3 Marx
>CHANGED THE METHOD OF DETERMINATION of the determination of the magnitude
>of surplus-value, from the equations I presented in my previous post to
>your equation above?

Well not exactly. Surplus value remains total value, as monetarily
expressed, minus cost price. Surplus value is not only a residual but
a monetary one.  It now turns out however that total value will be
more or less depending on whether the means of production were bought
below or above their value (again I assume that the full value of
those means are transferred gratis by labor).

>  If this is what you are arguing, then this would be
>no small matter.  Indeed I would say that this is the biggest matter of
>all in Marx's theory.  Marx's theory is mainly about the determination of
>the magnitude of surplus-value.  So if Marx indeed changed his method of
>determination of the magnitude of surplus-value in Volume 3, then one
>would expect an extensive discussion of this all-important modification in
>his theory, right?

well  marx's dropping of the assumption that the price of the means
of production is proportional to their value does not require him to
revise in any way the vol 1 thesis that  live labor is the sole
source of surplus value.

As I have said repeatedly, even if means of production are bought
below value, it is not this distributional fact that enlargens
surplus value since only if IN PRODUCTION workers transfer gratis the
value in toto will surplus value be enlarged.

Marx already clarified in vol I that the preservation of the value of
the means of production is a gift the working class gives to the
capitalist class simply by employing them in the production of
commodity output.

So Marx made no modification in the exploitation theory of surplus value.

>
>But I know of NO such discussion in Chapter 9 of Volume 3 or elsewhere in
>Marx's manuscripts.  Rakesh, if there are such discussions, would you
>please send the references?
>
>In the absence of such references, I find it highly unlikely that Marx
>would have changed the method of determination of the all-important
>magnitude of surplus-value without ever mentioning this fundamental
>modification.

As I said there is no modification to the exploitation theory of
surplus value and value. But there is a recognition of an inverse
transformation problem on p. 265, and there is recognition of a
problem of double divergence in Capital 3 and TSV III.

>
>That is one reason I argue that Marx did NOT CHANGE his method of the
>determination of the magnitude of surplus-value in Volume 3.  The
>magnitude of surplus-value is determined by the theory presented in Volume
>1 (and expressed in the equations I have presented) and this does not
>change in Volume 3.

What you are saying is that surplus labor is the sole source of
surplus value,right?

But I am saying that surplus labor does not have to be sole source of
surplus value to sustain the vol 1 theory of the exploitation of live
labor--live labor transferring gratis the value of "underpriced"
means of production can be an additional determinant of the surplus
value produced in this or that branch. It doesn't matter. Productive,
live labor is the sole source of the value of the commodity output
and the surplus value embodied therein.

>  Rather, the magnitude of surplus-value that is
>determined in Volume 1 is TAKEN AS GIVEN in Volume 3, in which the
>question is not the production of surplus-value, but the distribution of
>surplus-value.

I am still quite unclear about what is meant by this thesis of
surplus value as given.

>
>
>Rakesh, exactly where did Marx "go back and revise this assumption" (that
>the magnitude of S depends on V and RS, and is independent of C) "which he
>has been carrying since Volume 1 and which is built into the
>transformation process"?  Where did Marx discuss the new method of
>determination of the magnitude of surplus-value?  As I have said, I know
>of no such discussion.

This is how I interpret p. 265 and p.309 and the problem of double
divergence generally.

Yours, Rakesh
```

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