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Re: Last word (Last Date?)

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  • Mason Gaffney
    Dear Rana et al.: This is beginning to remind me of Floyd Cramer s lovely piano piece, Last Date. I will not comment on your entire letter because I, like
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 28, 2004
      Dear Rana et al.:

      This is beginning to remind me of Floyd Cramer's lovely piano piece, "Last Date."

      I will not comment on your entire letter because I, like you, fear that others may get their fill before we do. I will just comment on the dates you give, and a very few of the many misgivings I have about your interpretations of Marx as being virtually a Georgist.

      A. You omit *The Poverty of Philosophy*, Marx's attack on Proudhon, orig. 1847. Here we find "Land as capital is no more eternal than any other capital." (p.138, International Publishers, n.d.).
      That seems to imply we can tax capital as heavily as we can land, without impairing incentives to create and maintain it.
      B. The Manifesto's 10 points say nothing about NOT taxing capital. Marx dismissed and derogated George as the last ditch defender of capitalism. That seems to imply Marx favored taxing capital (probably along with other aspects of capitalism, like exchange).
      C. The Manifesto's point 1 does not say to tax land. It says to abolish property in land, and apply rents to public purposes. Point 7 includes "to improve the soil in accordance with a common plan." That looks a lot like the kolkhoz and sovkhoz ideas.
      D. The 10 points do not include universal suffrage.
      E. Point 8 includes "Establishment of industrial armies, especially for agriculture." Not my idea of free labor, but a lot like Mao's cultural revolution.
      F. The dates you give do not succeed in sorting out the confusion about dates, because for each item at least three dates are needed: When Marx wrote it; When it was published; When it was available in English. On the posthumous publications, it is also important to know who really wrote it?
      G. Once you have socialized land, as per his point #1, what is the point of #2, a "heavy graduated income tax"? It can only be to socialize the results of work, and capital formation.


      ----- Original Message -----
      From: RANA ROY
      To: Mase Gaffney ; Wetzel Dave ; LandCafe@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Saturday, September 25, 2004 12:02 PM
      Subject: Last word

      Dear Mason, et al.,

      It seems that I have unwittingly triggered a debate on the meaning of Marx by sending an note to Dave on the bibliography of Walras! It's not clear to me that this of any interest to the Group as a whole. But since there have so many individual messages flying past each other, let me pen a last if lengthy word on the subject, for the record, and leave it at that.

      1. First, let's sort out the confusion about dates.
      1848: Manifesto.
      1857: Grundrisse, published posthumously.
      1859: Critique of Political Economy.
      1859-1867: several volumes of preparatory work on Capital, including the posthumously published volumes II, III and IV (the last-named being Theories of Surplus Value, in Parts 1, 2 and 3).
      1867: Capital, volume I.
      1875: Critique of the Gotha Programme.
      Note that what we now know as Capital volume III predates the publication of Capital volume I. Note also that the chapter on Wakefield is the final chapter of Capital volume I.


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