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 Post subject: Re: Simple Question(s)
PostPosted: Thu Jun 01, 2017 2:27 am 
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sartesian wrote:

Anyway, in my dotage I'm grappling with all the things I've been "uneasy" about in my readings of Marx-- like:

how could cotton production, based on slavery in the US South, and elsewhere, produce surplus value, when surplus value is the result of wage labor, requiring the division of the working day into necessary and surplus labor periods, which separation gives labor its dual existence as use value and exchange value?

Why is it that armament production (and the like) is not considered "productive labor" when productive labor is pretty much defined by Marx as labor that produces a surplus value? Is production of assault rifles unproductive labor when purchased by the government, but somehow productive labor when purchased by individuals for hunting?

Same question for infrastructure work-- roads, bridges, utilities, railroads, etc.-- why performed by or for the state-- unproductive labor? But if owned, or operated, "privately" it's productive labor? That's attributed a knowledge of purpose to the objects of, and object of, the mode of production... and I don't think that exists.


Reminder that a list with tons of debates by a host of marxist academics around these marxist "uneasy things" can be searched for keywords (eg: unproductive armament) by typing them in front of this in google:

site:http://ricardo.ecn.wfu.edu/~cottrell/ope/archive/


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 Post subject: Re: Simple Question(s)
PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 5:16 am 
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Quote:
how could cotton production, based on slavery in the US South, and elsewhere, produce surplus value, when surplus value is the result of wage labor, requiring the division of the working day into necessary and surplus labor periods, which separation gives labor its dual existence as use value and exchange value?


This may be an ignorant answer, but I always assumed that, regardless of the direct social relations in the production of cotton (and other raw materials grown/picked/etc. by slave labor), the dominance of capitalist social relations outside these 'pockets' of slavery more or less transformed the results of production when they entered the market. Since slavery was artificially maintained on top of capitalism etc.


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 Post subject: Re: Simple Question(s)
PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 8:28 am 
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mhou wrote:
Quote:
how could cotton production, based on slavery in the US South, and elsewhere, produce surplus value, when surplus value is the result of wage labor, requiring the division of the working day into necessary and surplus labor periods, which separation gives labor its dual existence as use value and exchange value?


This may be an ignorant answer, but I always assumed that, regardless of the direct social relations in the production of cotton (and other raw materials grown/picked/etc. by slave labor), the dominance of capitalist social relations outside these 'pockets' of slavery more or less transformed the results of production when they entered the market. Since slavery was artificially maintained on top of capitalism etc.


That's not ignorant, that's precisely Marx's answer, one that I've relied on for years.


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