[Marxism] 'What to do with the Labor Theory of Value'

Angelus Novus fuerdenkommunismus at yahoo.com
Sun May 12 13:23:41 MDT 2013

Shane Mage wrote:

> These are both entirely empirical sums--alternative measurements of the 
> same aggregate, one in terms of money the other in terms of hours of 
> socially necessary labor time.

No, because socially necessary labor time, *abstract* labor, cannot be measured by a clock, but only as a sum of money.  

The reduction of a concrete act of labor to abstract socially necessary labor is an ex post facto process consummated on the market, wherein is decided whether a private, concrete labor expenditure gets to be valid as socially necessary abstract labor.

To reiterate, this was the basis of Marx's polemic against Proudhon.  The latter believed money could be abolished and labor-value measured directly. If you think abstract labor is an empirical phenomenon that can be measured with a clock, you are taking Proudhon's perspective, not Marx's.

More information about the Marxism mailing list