[OPE-L:1342] Re: more re advertising and productive labour

From: Gerald Levy (glevy@pratt.edu)
Date: Fri Sep 24 1999 - 19:34:05 EDT

Re Mike W's [OPE-L:1341]:

> Next question:
> does it have value? Answer: yes,

That's one answer.

My answer is: no.

For value to be constituted there must not only be labor performed, but
the labor time performed must represent:

a) *socially-necessary*-labor time; and,
b) labor time engaged in the *production* of a commodity.

Even *if* I grant you a), then b) does not apply for advertising labor
since the labor performed does not produce commodities and surplus value
but rather sells commodities and realizes surplus value.

As I can recall, you have consistently agreed with the proposition that
value is created in production. If that is the case, how can value then be
created (rather than realized through exchange) by advertising?

I think what is partially at issue here in this discussion is the
distinction between production of value and surplus value and the
realization/actualization of value and s that occurs with exchange.
> just so advertising services are produced
> under capitalist direct production relations.

In what sense is advertising labor engaged in *production*?

Lawyers, supervisors, and accountants perform a use-value for
capitalists. That labor also has an exchange value (otherwise capitalists
wouldn't pay their salaries). Yet, this does not mean that the labor
performed by these groups is creative of value.

> If they are, their output is
> indeed a commodity (the unity of use-value and value), ergo, that labour is
> protentially productive of surplus value. This is the point I have made many
> times, without, it seems, persuading anyone:

Win some, lose some.

> for example - no new value is
> created by the mere act of exchnage. Agreed! But, the processes of exchange
> generate demands (if you'll pardon the expression) for a variety of goods
> and services.

Actually, advertising labor logically precedes the act of exchange. That
is, it happens prior to the generation of additional "demands". It
therefore has a use-value to capitalists (agreed) -- the potential to
increase the "demands" for the commodity output. Yet, what is that output?
It is not the advertising itself. Rather, the output consists of the
commodities sold with the assistance of advertising labor.
> E.G. 2: pure borrowing and lending
> of money does not create new value. Agreed - indeed it is a process whereby
> financial capitalists appropriate some of the surplus value produced by the
> labour employed by their commercial borrowers! But the processes of credit
> creation generate demands (sorry about that) for a variety of goods and
> services. If those demands are met by goods and services that are produced
> under capitalist direct production relations, then the labour that produces
> them is potentially productive. etc., etc..

So labor performed at banks is "potentially productive" of surplus value?
In solidarity, Jerry

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