[OPE-L:5436] Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: turnover time and surplus value

From: Rakesh Narpat Bhandari (rakeshb@Stanford.EDU)
Date: Thu Apr 26 2001 - 13:17:41 EDT

re 5428

>The issue can perhaps be clarified by dimensional analysis.
>The rate of exploitation s/v as the ratio of two flows is a dimensionless
>The organic composition of capital can be treated in two ways
>c/v which is a flow measure, and as such is also a dimensionless
>number. Or as C/v which is of the form
>C    person  hours                     person hours
>-  = ----------------    = ----------
>v     person hours per year         persons
>Note that person hours per year is an expression of the form
>persons x time
>    time
>and thus simplifies to persons
>So organic composition of capital in the form C/v expresses the
>number of hours or years of embodied labour existing per worker.
>As such it must clearly be affected by the labour embodied in
>partially made goods.
>The other form of organic composition, which lends itself to
>empirical work in i/o tables is c/v which is the ratio of two
>flows and as such is dimensionless. It expresses the division
>of the labour force into those producing means of production
>and those producing consumer goods.
>The dimensional calculus has been known since Newton,
>and is fundamental to having a clear understanding of how
>to distinguish flow from stock quantities. The practice of
>the classical economists, including Marx of analysing things
>in terms of fixed production periods can obscure the
>dimensional properties of the quantities that they are
>dealing with.

I shall think about what you are saying here, Paul C, but in my 
estimation the OCC is neither a non-dimensional flow measure nor as 
an annual C/v measure. The "dimension" (if I understand your use of 
terms) for the OCC is the production period itself; that is, the OCC 
measures the constant capital laid out for the machines, raw 
materials and building which will be "used up"  in relation to the 
variable capital advanced for any one production cycle.

In case 2 of my example what precisely does not change is the 
constant capital laid out for each production cycle. What is halved 
is the variable capital needed to complete each round of production.

So in my example it is precisely not due to a reduction in the OCC 
that the improved per annum profit rate can be explained. Indeed the 
OCC rises, yet the profit rate improves without a change in the real 

How can this be? Case 2 then would effectively have to be a case of 
the intensification of labor--labor produces twice as much "saleable 
output" in a given period of time.

We can argue whether this intensification of labor is the same as a 
rise in the exploitation of labor. I argue that this intensification 
is exactly what the rise in the annual rate of surplus value is 
measuring, and it should indeed be considered as a rise in the rate 
of exploitation.

But let me think over what you and Allin are saying,and I'll look at 
the note tonight.

Thanks for the analysis of these thorny issues.

Yours, Rakesh

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