Monday, August 29, 2005

Foundations-notes from the Grudrisse. Foreword II

The manuscripts consist of two main chapters: on money and capital; and two more fragments on Bastiat and Carey.

In 1859, Marx chose to drop the Introduction and write a new one. [This will be considered later.]

Chapter on Money

Money comes to signify a whole set of social relations (not just mere paper or gold.) "Capital," too comes to signify a set of social relations based on opposite laws impelled onwards and undermined by the inner tensions. Explanation to follow in detail.

At first the chapter on Capital is difficult to follow, in part due to digressions and repeated assertions. Also as a result of cross purposes. Marx wrote that he intended to advance a systematic account, as well as a get out a pamphlet on "the ongoing economic crisis."

Details of Chapter:

The beginning addresses a bank reform by the Proudhonianist, Dairimon. After a drain of gold from France which produces a scarcity of money, interest rates go up. The people can't borrow. Solution? Go off gold standard which bring interest rates to zero, follows the Proudhonist slogan "Free Credit." Marx then points to the differences between money and credit and points out the "ordinariness" of Dairimon's requests.

The second phase of the Proudhoninists' plan brings Marx to his major theoretical questions. Their plan is to replace the money system with a labour time system.

Marx agrees with labour-time proponents that the value of any commodity is determined by the labour time it cost to produce. True on average only. Money serves the function of averaging out to a common standard or measure.

{I will continue to update this section but for now my fingers grow weary. So You will not see new dates but an extension of this entry . I still have 10 pages on section 2 to go.}

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