Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Blockquoting X

Insights into capital, as George Soros recently observed, are often more sophisticated than those of Adam Smith. Marx understood clearly that "in themselves, money and commodities are no more capital than are the means of productions and of subsistence. That they want transforming into capital." He also understood that if assets could be converted into commodities and made to interact in markets, they could express values that are imperceptible to the senses but can be captured to produce rents. For Marx, property was an important issue because it was clear to him that those who appropriated the assets obtained much more than just their physical attributes. As a result, the Marxist intellectual tool kit has left anticapitalists powerful ways to explain why private property will necessarily put assets in the hands of the rich at the expense of the poor.
No, I did not pull that quote from PAEcon.net. It is from De Soto's The Mystery of Capital. What do you think? Comments are open.

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