Re: measurement of abstract labor

From: Fred Moseley (fmoseley@MTHOLYOKE.EDU)
Date: Thu Jun 10 2004 - 23:10:07 EDT

Ajit, I thought we have been having a pretty good discussion, but I find
your latest response mostly bluster.

You asked me how do I measure the L in Marx's labor theory of value?
I answered that the total current labor-time is taken as given, including
adjustments for different skills and unequal intensities.

Then you asked how do I EMPIRICALLY MEASURE the L in Marx's theory.
And I answered that, one CANNOT EMPIRICALLY MEASURE the L in Marx's
theory, because that L is a SOCIAL AVERAGE, socially necessary labor-time,
not actual labor-times that are observable.

And I asked you in turn: does you question about how L is empirically
measured indicate that, in your view, a theory of price must be in terms
of observable variables only?  And you did not answer this question, but
instead accused me of making nonsense.

Forget the positivism (I was just trying to put this question in a broader
philosophical context), and please answer this question: do you think that
a theory of price must be in terms of observable variables only?

Then maybe we can continue our fruitful discussion.


On Thu, 10 Jun 2004, ajit sinha wrote:

> Fred, you are not answering my simple questions. My
> point is that what you are saying in the name of Marx
> is simply nonsense. I can prove that if only you would
> agree to discuss the matter step by step. This problem
> has nothing to do with positivism etc. I may not know
> much philosophy, but I know this much that nonsense
> does not become profundity in non-positivist
> philosophy. Any way, I don't even know what you mean
> by positivism. Is it Vienna school you are referring
> to? Cheers, ajit sinha

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