Re: [OPE-L] Marx on the 'maximum rate of profit'

From: Francisco Paulo Cipolla (cipolla@UFPR.BR)
Date: Fri Oct 13 2006 - 15:19:49 EDT

Yes, Ajit, we can have anything, any combination possible. But we are
talking about tendencies, laws of motion, regularities. If capital shows
a tendency to increase technical composition all accross industries then
both valuesof labor power and means of production will fall all accross.
This means that value composition of capital will behave organically
related to technical composition, which results in a rising L/c.

ajit sinha wrote:

> --- Francisco Paulo Cipolla <cipolla@UFPR.BR> wrote:
> > Rising organic composition and rising rate of
> > exploitation are obviously
> > related, Ajit. They are two aspects of increasing
> > productivity.
> _________________________
> No, they are not. You can have increasing productivity
> with falling organic composition of capital and you
> can have decreasing productivity with rising
> composition of capital. There is no law in economics
> that I know of that says that productivity of labor
> cannot rise if he value of constant element of capital
> falls faster than the value of variable capital
> needed. Secondly, imagine you are involved in mining.
> As you produce more and more you find that it is
> becoming more and more difficult to produce the same
> amount of minerals as before, so you bring in heavy
> machinery, your organic composition would rise but
> your labor productivity may remain the same.
> Generalize this case to agriculture as a whole, as
> Ricardo did. You can have a rising organic composition
> of capital with either fall or no increase in labor
> productivity.
> ______________________________
>  As
> > productivity rises and values fall workers can have
> > a higher real wage
> > (amount of goods), be more exploited, all this
> > together with a reduction
> > in the rate of profit. As you say the three trends
> > can go together.
> _______________
> Actually, I was a little hasty, and I shouldn’t have
> trusted my little mathematics done on the margin of a
> newspaper. As a matter of fact by relative
> immiseration, one could only mean the relative share
> of wages and profits PER UNIT OF NET OUTPUT. And I
> don't think under any circumstance the relative share
> of wages could fall along with the rate of profits per
> unit of net output. Thus the relative immiseration
> thesis does not even get a start if it is defined
> properly.
> ________________________
> > The maximum rate of profit is a concept that allows
> > us to see that the
> > fall of the profit rate is independent of the rate
> > of exploitation. For
> > this to be true it is enough to show that the new
> > value created (L)
> > shrinks as a percentage of constant capital.
> __________________________
> I don't think that a rise in C/L must imply a fall in
> the maximum rate of profits to begin with, since you
> are allowing labor productivity to rise. You should
> note that it is well accepted that the formula for the
> rate of profits as S/(C+V) is wrong, so you need to
> check Sraffa to see whether the proposition you think
> is obvious is all that obvious or not. Cheers, ajit
> sinha
> __________________________________________________
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