[OPE-L:7800] autonomous demand and Marxian theory (was "Hic Rhodus, hic salta!")

From: gerald_a_levy (gerald_a_levy@msn.com)
Date: Fri Oct 11 2002 - 05:58:47 EDT


Re Riccardo's [7787]:

Previously I wrote:

> >If by "ACTUAL life", you mean actual life in _today's_ capitalist social
> >formations,  then I would suggest a different dynamic:  to the extent
> >that (as a consequence of the concentration and centralization of
capital)
> >markets are increasingly dominated by *oligopolies*  where there is a
> >high degree of product differentiation,  then the reverse is the case.
> >I.e.  rather than responding to demand in the marketplace, the
oligopolies
> >use (essentially, as part of their product differentiation strategy)
> >advertising and marketing to *create*  (individual and market) demand
> >for their commodities. Thus, rather than consumer preferences being
> >exogenous (as assumed in marginal utility theory and the doctrine of
> >consumer sovereignty), business firms play a large role in shaping
> >consumer preferences.

Riccardo then asks and declares:

> this is Galbraith (more or less), right? it's OK to me.

I guess. I wasn't thinking of Galbraith when I wrote the post but
if he wrote something similar then that's OK with me.

> you are right, actual life was too short, I meant 'actual', answering
> to Fred, as, say, a theoretical description of the actual working of
> a capitalist economy in general. now, here I would say that
> Robinson's way of putting things is right, that in capitalism workers
> are exploited because their firms have good reasons to expect an
> adequate amount of effective demand on the market, and effective
> demand is driven ( la Keynes) by autonomous demand. in this I find
> something which was foreign (as the micro-macro distinction) to Marx,
> but which is quite compatible with his labour theory of value and
> theory of capitalist development. IMHO

Why and how would  you integrate autonomous demand  into such a
theory?

In solidarity, Jerry


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