[OPE-L:6416] Re: Re: The significance of labor power commodification

From: Gil Skillman (gskillman@MAIL.WESLEYAN.EDU)
Date: Tue Jan 22 2002 - 12:46:07 EST

In response to my question 

>> Is the commodification of labor power *essential* or *incidental* to the
>> process of transforming money into capital, according to Marx's account in
>> Volume I of Capital?

Paul C. writes in 6409:

>Whatever input counts as the substance of value will generate the
>same paradox. If one constructs input output tables computing oil values
>you get the paradox that the price of one barrel of oil is less than one
>barrel, just as the price of one hour of labour is less than one hour.

Assuming a positive rate of exploitation, that is, and there's nothing
"paradoxical" about it.  Of course I agree--Roemer generalizes this point
in his Generalized Commodity Exploitation Theorem--but this misses the
point of my question:  is the fact that workers gain access to capital *by
selling their labor power as a commodity*--rather than, say, borrowing
money to finance constant capital costs or leasing capital goods
directly--essential to the process of creating surplus value under the
capitalist mode of production, according to Marx's account in Volume I of


>> Gil
>Paul Cockshott, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, Scotland
>0141 330 3125  mobile:07946 476966

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