[OPE-L:2901] Re: starting point and capital

From: Rakesh Bhandari (bhandari@Princeton.EDU)
Date: Tue Apr 25 2000 - 13:35:09 EDT

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Your reply to Gil seems convincing to me, so I look forward to his
comments. You raise the question of capitalism as a system. Relation
between exploiter and exploited is really mediated by a system wide average
rate of profit. That is, capitalism really operates as a totality; this
would not be true of feudalism where the demenses were not systematically
related in the same way. Moreover, in capitalism the
rate of exploitation is dependent on the success of the general production
of relative surplus value by which unit values are reduced. The cooperation
of the capitalist class is thus structural-- though even here, as Geoff Kay
has pointed out, this (cooperation) is paradoxically achieved through the
competition-driven production of relative surplus value. Another way to put
this is to emphasize that the generalization of money gives rise to
standardized calculating and calculated behavior that undergirds (and makes
possible) the generalizations of economic theory. That is, the ancient
Greeks could not have had economic theory because the generalizations upon
which it

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