Re: 'simple commodity production'

From: Allin Cottrell (
Date: Fri Sep 17 2004 - 20:00:22 EDT

On Thu, 16 Sep 2004, ajit sinha wrote
(in response to Paul C on price equilibration in pre-capitalist

> But Paul, my point was that the income differentials may become
> customary, so the customary prices may not reflect labor-values. In
> my opinion, before the advent of classical economics, and in this
> context Ricardo rather than Smith, the fair price was calculated
> by,more or less, adding up established customary returns.

This seems to me an egregious confusion of the thought object with the
real object.  Ricardo articulated a theory of the effects of market
competition: he did not invent such competition.

I would require a lot of historical evidence before I concluded that
people prior to the 19th century were perfectly happy with "customary"
returns and did not seek out opportunities for betterment, at least
over the long periods that Paul was talking about.

Allin Cottrell

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