Re: [OPE-L] wages of superintendence

From: Jerry Levy (Gerald_A_Levy@MSN.COM)
Date: Fri Nov 10 2006 - 16:29:17 EST

> You didn't really answer my question, but never mind.

Hi again Jurriaan:

Sorry, I wasn't trying to avoid answering it.

The wages of superintendence can be treated as a portion of profit:
i.e. once surplus value has been transformed into profit (that is, once
the commodity profit has been sold) a portion of it can be treated
as revenues which are distributed to capitalists and their proxies
(managers).  These funds form the basis for the consumption
and reproduction of  the capitalist class and their proxies. Whether
firms actually treat it this way from an accounting perspective is another

> The practical
> impossibility of accurately splitting management tasks into productive and
> non-productive functions applies to ALL forms of labour, insofar as (1) a
> worker usually combines some productive and non-productive functions in
> his work, and (2) everything depends on whether the results of the work
> actually increase the value of capital assets or not.

I don't see why it should apply to ALL forms of labour.  While
it is possible that the tasks of individual workers could be partially
productive and partially unproductive (e.g. a worker at a fast food
restaurant  might spend part of the working day cooking and another part
at the cash register),  I don't think this can IN PRACTICE be said for
all -- or even MOST -- forms of  wage labour.  Indeed,  I think that
a concrete analysis of the actual division of labor in contemporary
capitalist social formations will show that it's rather EXCEPTIONAL:
the overwhelmingly amount of wage-workers are either productive of
surplus value or unproductive.  The following is crucial: you can not treat
the wages of superintendence as if it is just another form of labor --
indeed,  you have admitted as much when you recognized the control
function of managers and suggested splitting their labor time into time
exercising control (unproductive function) and coordination (productive

In solidarity, Jerry

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