Power, Property, the Law, and the Corporation – a Commentary on David Ellerman’s paper: ‘The Labour Theory of Property and Marginal Productivity Theory’

Jamie Morgan


The point of departure of David Ellerman’s paper is that the role of labour in economics can be looked at in a fundamentally different way than has typically been the case. The paper’s purpose is, therefore, oppositional. However, it cannot simply be dismissed. It is clearly articulated, well reasoned, and most importantly, thought provoking. It requires one to rethink how one conceives some basic issues in economics. As such, one does not need to be entirely convinced by the argument to consider it worthy of dissemination. At the same time, if one subscribes to the ethic of structured or critical pluralism one must also consider the pressure points of the argument (see Dow, 2004; Dobusch and Kapeller, 2012). Below, I briefly reconstruct Ellerman’s core claims and provide some comment on that argument.

Read David Ellerman’s paper “The Labour Theory of Property and Marginal Productivity Theory”

Published on 30th March, 2016, in Economic Thought Vol 5, No 1, 2016