Value theory (da dattam)

Charles Brown CharlesB at
Wed Feb 28 10:04:54 MST 2001

What are para - mutual phenomena ? Race track betting ?


>>> plf13 at 02/27/01 11:17PM >>>
Da Dattam wrote:

> The problem is that Marx starts with "reproduction"
>- - an equillibrium assumption.  The efforts to
>reconcile something that begins with an equillibrium
>assumption to a para-mutual phenomenon predictably
>result in hopeless arcana and anfractuosities.  I
>think there is general agreement that para-mutual
>phenomena are impenetrable to all but the most modern
>mathematics.  Marx simply did not have anything
>approaching the necessary analytic tools.

Actually, Marx's approach was the other way around.

One of his most profound criticisms of bourgeois political economy, and
bourgeois social science generally, was that it was based on the
supposition of equilibrium.  This meant that when crises occurred, even the
best bourgeois political economists, not to mention their dismal heirs in
economics, saw it as the result of some kind of unnatural distrubance in
societal equilibrium, equilibrium being regarded as the natural state of
bourgeois society.  One of Marx's great strengths, and contributions, was
to show that disequilibrium is the 'natural' state of capitalist society -
motion and conflict, rather than equilibrium, characterise it.

The idea that only modern mathematics can penetrate 'para-mutual phenomena'
- let alone that there is 'general agreement' on this - is pretty bizarre
too.  It would lead to writing off social science per se.

Philip Ferguson

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