[OPE-L:5414] Re: Re: Re: Re: turnover time and surplus value

From: Gerald_A_Levy (Gerald_A_Levy@email.msn.com)
Date: Wed Apr 25 2001 - 06:51:31 EDT

(The following was written yesterday but I did
not send it because I was not entirely satisfied
with it as an answer. To the extent, though, that
it seems to touch on an issue being debated
by Allin and Rakesh [5413], I have decided to
send it anyway. One issue below that I am
addressing is how a reduction in turnover time,
as exemplified by just-in-time production,
can have contradictory impacts on the organic
composition of capital, JL)

Paul C wrote in [5381]:

> A reduced turnover time is equivalent to having
> a smaller stock of work  in progress - the aim
> of just in time manufacturing is  to reduce this
> stock. The effect is to lower the organic
> composition of capital.

I agree that a smaller quantity of 'work in
progress'  caused by JITM will lead to a
reduction in the organic composition of capital.
In this case,  firms can purchase smaller
manufacturing facilities and spend less on
storage costs (including  fuel and electricity)
of parts. This  represents a decrease in c. It
can _also_ represent a reduction in v, however,
to the extent that less labor is required now
for storage which causes total labor
requirements to be diminished.

However,*if* a reduction in the turnover time
means that unsold inventory is reduced, and
thereby there is a reduction in circulation time,
does this also represent a decrease in c?
To some extent, I would say 'yes' because
the storage costs for unsold output will be
decreased.  However, I don't think that it
is accurate to view the unsold commodity
output *itself* as constant capital. Rather,
the output is presumed to take the commodity-
form and have value but does not take the
capital-form unless and until it is exchanged for 
money whereupon money-capital received can
then be used to purchase c and v.

Perhaps I have misunderstood your point:
do you consider unsold output to be part of

In solidarity, Jerry

[PS to Rakesh on signifying 'thingifying':
there is a time for all things. Neither Marx nor
Cottrell viewed time as a 'thing'.  Time is not a
'thing'. It is a dimension, along with space, in
which things exist.]

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