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Marxian Economics

Letters: The Plebs Leaguer and Marx


Confession from Winifred Horrabin

    We have received the following letter from the Honorary Secretary of the Plebs League referring to our criticism in the April “Socialist Standard” :—

The Editor,
     “The Socialist Standard.”
                              April 11th, 1926.

Dear Comrade,

 ‘‘The Socialist Standard,” ever up to date, criticises in its April issue a review of mine that appeared in the “Sunday Worker” in November of last year and in criticising what I wrote launches a bitter personal attack on me, calling me “a mentally indolent superior person,” finishing up by asking me why I "pose as a Marxian.”

 May I be allowed to answer?

Working Class "Education": Plebs Leaguer Puts Marx Right


 Winifred Horrabin i
s Honorary Secretary of the Plebs League. She reviewed in the “Sunday Worker” (15 Nov., 1925) "A Worker Looks at Economics," written by Mark Starr, a fellow member of the League. After warning the workers to beware of Capitalist explanations of economic facts and figures she writes:—

       “Don’t let us expect that when our employers pay us 5s. for 10s. worth of our labour power that their explanation of that odd 5s. is going to be the same as ours.”

Letters: Correspondence

 Dear Sirs,

Could you please answer these questions below, in order to clear up a great deal of misunderstanding?

   1.When is the value of a commodity determined?
   2.Can additional value be added to the commodity in the process of distribution?
   3.Has distribution any determining factor in the value of a commodity?


Sid Felperin


REPLY:
 A commodity is a useful article produced for exchange. It is the result of the application of human energy to the material provided by nature. Its value {a social relation) depends upon the amount of labour required to reproduce such an article in a given society under certain given physical and social conditions.

A Lesson in Terms

 Distinctions the workers must understand

 Wealth used for the reproduction of wealth is capital, says the orthodox school of political economy. This definition can only arise through failure to understand the fact that only in certain historical conditions and in a certain mode of production, does wealth become capital.

 It is the habit of the orthodox school to treat of the present system of society as though it had always existed and always will. Hence wealth and capital are to them synonymous.

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