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Reclaiming Marx's 'Capital':…
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Reclaiming Marx's 'Capital': A Refutation of the Myth of…

by Andrew Kliman

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Andrew Kliman's book seeks to reclaim Marx' "Capital" as a work of internal consistency and a valid, if not necessarily correct, exposition of the Marxist Law of Value. His main opponents in this, interestingly enough, are other Marxists, and the followers of Sraffa, both of which have done everything imaginable over the past century to propagate the myth that there is a "transformation problem" between prices and values in Marxist economic theory, and that Marx needs to be 'corrected' to fix this glaring oversight.

Kliman demonstrates irrefutably that these claims are false. He shows that, for each and every 'exposé' and each and every subsequent 'solution' proposed, the same errors are at the basis of the reasoning. All of the arguments about the transformation problem rest on either dualism between price and value, which Marx nowhere supports, or physicalism (which means that profit exists as physical surplus), which is false, or simultaneism (which means that input prices and output prices have to be equal during the same production period), which is also false, or usually a combination of these things. Even well-respected Marxist economists, such as Laibman and Moseley, have fallen into this trap, and this goes for non-Marxists who have written about Marxist economics equally (Robinson and Samuelson for example).

By destroying the basis of the physicalist, dualist, simultaneist critique of Marx, and substituting for it the temporal single system interpretation (TSSI) of Marx, which allows everything Marx says in "Capital" to make sense and to be internally valid and consistent, Kliman demonstrates that the "transformation problem" has been a problem on the part of some readers, not Marx, all along, and that the reports of the death of the Marxist theory of value have been greatly exaggerated.

All of this is done wonderfully and with iron logic. The one downside of this book, as with every book by Kliman and/or Freeman, is the pointless invective aimed at their opponents and the almost paranoid tone in which the lack of positive reception on the part of Kliman et al. is discussed. Even respected Marxist colleagues, who probably agree politically and scientifically with Kliman on 99.9% of all issues, are constantly portrayed as ignorant at best and malevolent and intellectually dishonest at worst, without any proof for this at all. Kliman and the other TSSI people would probably do better to be more respectful in their refutations of their opponents, because in that way they make it a lot easier for these opponents to change their stance without feeling humiliated about it. This would be beneficial for Marxism and all of economics as a whole, since the TSSI interpretation is most certainly correct.
  McCaine | Apr 13, 2007 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0739118528, Paperback)

This book seeks to reclaim Capital from the myth of internal inconsistency, a myth that serves to justify the censorship of Marx's critique of political economy and present-day research based upon it. Andrew Kliman shows that the alleged inconsistencies are actually caused by misinterpretation. By modifying the standard interpretation of Marx's value theory in two simple ways, the recent "temporal single-system interpretation" eliminates all of the alleged inconsistencies. Written especially for the non-specialist reader, in a clear, accessible style and with the bare minimum of mathematics, Reclaiming Marx's "Capital" introduces readers to Marx's value theory and contrasting interpretations of it, the history of the internal inconsistency controversy, and interpretive standards and methods. Kliman then surveys Marx's falling-rate-of-profit theory, the relationship of prices to values (the "transformation problem"), Marx's exploitation theory of profit, and other topics. The book ends with a discussion of why the myth of inconsistency persists, and a call to set the record straight.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:04 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

This book seeks to reclaim Capital from the myth of internal inconsistency, a myth that serves to justify the censorship of Marx's critique of political economy and present-day research based upon it. Andrew Kliman shows that the alleged inconsistencies are actually caused by misinterpretation. By modifying the standard interpretation of Marx's value theory in two simple ways, the recent 'temporal single-system interpretation' eliminates all of the alleged inconsistencies. Written especially for the non-specialist reader, in a clear, accessible style and with the bare minimum of mathematics, Reclaiming Marx's 'Capital' introduces readers to Marx's value theory and contrasting interpretations of it, the history of the internal inconsistency controversy, and interpretive standards and methods. Kliman then surveys Marx's falling-rate-of-profit theory, the relationship of prices to values (the 'transformation problem'), Marx's exploitation theory of profit, and other topics. The book ends with a discussion of why the myth of inconsistency persists, and a call to set the record straight.… (more)

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