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leftist_not_liberal Donating Member (408 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-06-07 05:47 PM
Response to Reply #18
28. In Fact
Edited on Sat Oct-06-07 06:47 PM by leftist_not_liberal
Hayek was appointed to the position by one Lionel Robbins, a sycophant, err...student, of Eugen Ritter von Bhm-Bawerk

The closest thing to a bourgeois critique of Marx is by Eugen von Bhm-Bawerk and it dates back to over 100 years ago. While others have criticized small slivers of Marx's work, Bhm-Bawerk's is considered to be "comprehensive". It is astonishing how many footnotes on the "total debunking of Marx" end up leading exclusively to him. In fact, Bhm-Bawerk's work is structured to look exactly like an anti-matter version of Marx, i.e. a three volume Capital and Interest. The actual theory is thin stuff indeed, focusing on the term or period of capital. An aside, somehow Bhm-Bawerk stepped on Adam Smith somewhere in his writings against Marx and one of the neo-Smithians refered to him as "that bombastic flea, Bhm-Bawerk".

Capital and Interest is available on the web and worth looking at:

The following is from Karl Marx and the Close of His System, which is supposed to be Bhm-Bawerk's decisive polemic, as opposed to his "masterwork", cited above. Another interesting footnote is that virtually nothing of Bhm-Bawerk's own work is any longer considered relevent - only his "debunking" survives.


...Marx relates, "supposes," asserts, but he gives no word
of proof. He consequently makes a bold, not to say naive jump, when he proclaims
as an ascertained result (as though he had successfully worked out a line of
argument) that it is, therefore, quite consistent with facts to regard values,
historically also, as prior to prices of production. As a matter of fact it is beyond
question that Marx has not proved by his "supposition" the historical existence of
such a condition. He has only hypothetically deduced it from his theory; and as to
the credibility of that hypothesis we must, of course, be free to form our own

As a fact, whether we regard it from within or from without, the gravest doubts
arise as to its credibility. It is inherently improbable, and so far as there can be a
question here of proof by experience, even experience is against it.

It is inherently altogether improbable. For it requires that it should be a matter of
complete indifference to the producers at what time they receive the reward of their
activity, and that is economically and psychologically impossible. Let us make this
clear to ourselves by considering Marx's own example point by point. Marx
compares two workersI. and II. Labourer No. I. represents a branch of
production which requires technically a relatively large and valuable means of
production resulting from previous labour, raw material, tools, and auxiliary
material. Let us suppose, in order to illustrate the example by figures, that the
production of the previous material required five years' labour, whilst the working
of it up into finished products was effected in a sixth year. Let us further suppose
what is certainly not contrary to the spirit of the Marxian hypothesis, which is
meant to describe very primitive conditionsthat labourer No. I. carries on both
works, that he both creates the previous material and also works it up into finished
products. In these circumstances he will obviously recompense himself for the
previous labour of the first years out of the sale of the finished products, which
cannot take place till the end of the sixth year. Or, in other words, he will have to
wait five years for the return to the first year's work. For the return to the second
year he will have to wait four years; for the third year, three years, and so on. Or,
taking the average of the six years' work, he will have to wait nearly three years
after the work has been accomplished for the return to his labour. The second
worker, on the other hand, who represents a branch of production which needs a
relatively small means of production resulting from previous labour will perhaps
turn out the completed product, taking it through all its stages, in the course of a
month, and will therefore receive his compensation from the yield of his product
almost immediately after the accomplishment of his work.

Now Marx's hypothesis assumes that the prices of the commodities I. and II. are
determined exactly in proportion to the amounts of labour expended in their
production, so that the product of six years' work in the commodity No. I. only
fetches as much as the total produce of six years' work in commodity No. II. And
further, it follows from this that the labourer in commodity No. I. should be
satisfied to receive for every year's work, with an average of three years' delay of
payment, the same return that the labourer in commodity No. II. receives without
any delay; that therefore delay in the receipt of payment is a circumstance which
has no part to play in the Marxian hypothesis, and more especially has no influence
on competition, on the crowding or understocking of the trade in the different
branches of production, having regard to the longer or shorter periods of waiting to
which they are subjected.

I leave the reader to judge whether this is probable...

Bhm-Bawerk is one of the "founders" of "Libertarian Economics" (the so-called Austrian School).

Modern Libertarian political philosophy was born in exactly the same way as Eugene. It was "discovered" and funded by capitalism as a bought-and-paid-for ideological "criticism" of Marxism. The first important "Libertarian" institutions in America (in the early 1930's - imagine that! during the Great Depression... what a coincidence?) started out by popularizing the bombastic flea's work and distributing his books, free, to libraries and schools.

It is one hell of a story but the whole "Libertarian" racket was more crooked than a Ponzi scheme, absolutely manufactured out of whole cloth to oppose socialist ideology and nothing more. It is a designer theory that was designed to fullfill the needs of a free market. The demand was there for an oppositional theory to Marxism, but no supply. You can imagine how high the price was... although it fell right back down to its value when the Universities solved the crisis of production.

This is what you get for "challenging Marx"

You get to be Finance Minister of a dying reactionary empire (Austrio-Hungary) and you get your picture on currency.

Interestingly and by way of comparison, Marx died poor.

Sign me ILLIBERAL. Definitely Illiberal.

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