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Who stood to gain from boom conditions in housing markets. The provision of adequate housing use values (in the conventional consumption sense) for the mass of the population has increasingly been held hostage to these everdeepening exchange value considerations. The consequences for the provision of adequate and affordable housing for an increasing segment of the population have been disastrous. in the background to all this has been the shifting terrain of public opinion and public policy on the proper role of the state in the provision of adequate use values and basic needs to populations.

We will return to this when we look at the third foundational contradiction. all these oddities in part arise because the three basic functions of money have quite different requirements if they are to be effectively performed. Commodity moneys are good at storing value but dysfunctional when it comes to circulating commodities in the market. Coins and paper moneys are great as a means or medium of payment but are less secure as a long-term store of value. Fiat currencies issued by the state with compulsory circulation (compulsory because taxes have to be paid in this currency) are subject to the policy whims of the issuing authorities (for example, debts can be inflated away by just printing money).

It derives from the simple fact that without money and the commodity transactions it facilitates, value could not exist as an immaterial social relation. in other words, value could not form without the aid of the material representation (money) and the social practices of exchange. The relation between money and value is dialectical and co-evolutionary – they both emerge together – rather than causal. But the relation can also be misleading because the ‘gap’ between social value and its representation is riddled with potential contradictions, depending upon the form the money takes.

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Housing under capitalism (International Pamphlets) by Sidney Hill


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