Re: (OPE-L) Re: on money substance and abstract labor

From: cmgermer@UFPR.BR
Date: Fri Jun 11 2004 - 23:59:07 EDT

I'm sorry for the delayed answer. I`m out of town with little chance to
connect to internet. Ill try to answer the posts sent in response to my

Paul C. wrote:

> It is worse than that Gerry. If we take Clauses argument seriously
> money no longer exists.

I don't think this can be deduced from what I said. What I said is that
money and credit money are different realities and different concepts. If
our analysis is based on Marx's theory, then money, which is the general
equivalent of value, must be a commodity, which came to be gold. The
standard of prices or unit of account is a definite amount of the money
commodity. Credit money arises as a derivation from certificates of debt
in terms of the money commodity.
Now, the widespread view today is that money is no more a commodity,
because gold not only does not circulate, as is also not used officially
to define the standard of prices. In my opinion this conclusion has two
1) it does not account for the role played by gold in the monetary system
of our days. This account seems to me to be necessary, since gold is
present in very expressive amount as an official international monetary
reserve and in even greater amount as private reserves;
2) if one abandons the definition of money as a commodity, in Marx, one is
left without a theoretically consistent concept of money. The so called
hard 'currencies' are nothing more than national standards of prices, all
of them originally expressed in terms of the money commodity, gold. At
present each of them is expressed in terms of the basket of the others,
but doesn't have an independent definition. Thus, the substance of money
is unexplained.

In Marx's theory money is the general equivalent of value because it is
also a commodity. Thus, the value of the standard of prices is given by
the amount of social labor necessary to produce it. If an abstrat standard
of prices is conceived as being an equivalent of value, what is its value?
How much social labor does it represent?

Do yo think these are relevant problems? If they are, what explanations
can be given to them?


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