Re: [OPE-L] the global labor force and capital accumulation

From: Jerry Levy (Gerald_A_Levy@MSN.COM)
Date: Tue Jan 17 2006 - 19:29:19 EST

Re: [OPE-L] the global labor force and capital accumulatioRakesh's questions 1/15:

> But in this intro to Freeman's piece Japan Focus does not explain 
> this shortage of capital vis a vis the new global  labour force. A 
> remarkable (if not astonishing) silence, no? And I am hardly clear 
> as to what kind  of capital it  is talking about. Accumulated means 
> of production? Savings? The wage fund?

Rakesh's questions 1/16:

> Perhaps the oversupply of labor is unique, but what explains the fixity 
> of the supply of capital?  I would still appreciate any illumination on
> what Freeman is saying about this. It seems terribly confused and
> vague, yet the fixity of the supply of capital seems to be a key
> premise in Freeman's argument.

Early Rakesh  1/17:

> Isn't that what Freeman is talking about -- why the capital to labor
> ratio has dropped?  [...] Part of Freeman's answer of of what is new
> is not only the addition of new workers but the fixity in the supply
> of capital.  
> Again I ask the question of what it means to say that the supply of
> capital is fixed and how that is to be explained.  I am posing clear
> questions about Freeman's article.

Later Rakesh 1/17:

> At one level it does not matter what Freeman himself thinks. Is the 
> supply of capital virtually fixed?  If so, why?


As everyone who has read this thread is aware,  Rakesh's questions 
-- prior to revision in his 2nd post today -- were about Freeman's 
positions.  Now he says "at one level" it does not matter what Freeman 
thinks!  OF COURSE IT MATTERS.  As  Rakesh himself emphasizes 
when he first asked his questions on 1/15, Rakesh is "hardly clear as to 
what type of capital it is talking about."  Indeed, he even adds:  
"Accumulated means of production? Savings? The wage fund?."

Are we supposed to SPECULATE on what Freeman meant?  
Are we to just pick an arbitrary meaning of capital and discuss 
whether that has remained relatively fixed in recent history???!!!

So now he claims that I have not spoken to his questions (with 
added venom: "...though you pretended to be") because I had 
the temerity to refuse to speculate on what Freeman's position 
was beyond what I was aware of and to suggest that he locate
the original source for the estimates or ask the author.

When and if we KNOW what Freeman meant and the source
for his claim, then I might comment again.  Until such time, I 
will not comment further  beyond saying that the tone of his
recent reply and his sickening insinuation leads me to conclude
that it was a mistake on my part to respond to any of his
posts to begin with.

In solidarity, Jerry

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Wed Jan 18 2006 - 00:00:02 EST