Re: [OPE-L] SV: [OPE-L] what is irrational in the functioning of capitalism?

From: ajit sinha (sinha_a99@YAHOO.COM)
Date: Tue Nov 28 2006 - 06:11:52 EST

--- Nicola Taylor <nmtayl@YAHOO.COM.AU> wrote:

> ---------------------------------
> Goecmen wrote:
> "The aim of capitalism is to produce as many wage
> labourers as possible and put them on employment to
> exploit."
> Martin replied:
> "The aim of the capitalist entrepreneur, I believe,
> is
> accumulation of capital. Through this tendency, more
> areas of human society has historically been
> subsumed
> in a wagelabour relation over time. Ricardo was one
> who made the accumulation of capital modus very
> explicit in his Principles. I don't see that the
> ratio
> of wage labourers-population is really as important
> though".
Actually, I do not understand why "labor" is
particularly important in the context of production of
profit. Do we think that "surplus" cannot be produced
without labor? But why can't we imagine a system of
production completely operated by robots? In this
case, why can't we imagine the system producing a
"surplus" and a market with prices of commodities with
a rate of profits to boot. The question is, can we
make a logical claim that a system of production
without labor will not be able to produce "surplus".
If not, then there is a serious problem with Marx's
concept of "surplus value". Cheers, ajit sinha
> I agree with Martin that the individual entrepreneur
> is concerned only with capital accumulation - or
> from
> his/her perspective, making money returns that
> exceed
> costs.  I also agree with Martin that the
> capitalist's
> concern is rational in that 'money profit' is
> necessary for the successful reproduction of the
> firm
> in a capitalist system.  Now, to see how capitalist
> rationality fosters a reserve army of the unemployed
> one could consider, for example, the Nike
> Corporation.
>  Desperate workers in Indonesia consitute a huge
> reserve army of the unemployed, from whom Nike can
> pick and choose wage labourers.  In Indonesia, those
> 'lucky' enough to get a job are willing to work very
> long hours in appalling conditions for very low
> wages.
>  Nike workers, however, are not the buyers of the
> product, which is primarily sold in high-wage
> countries (where employment is also relatively
> higher).  Further, in high-wage countries the Nike
> corporation uses advertising techniques to increase
> demand (hence prices) for their products. These
> efforts to keep wages low and prices high have a
> further effect in that Nike shares may be seen by
> speculators as a worthwhile punt. The result is that
> Nike successfully reproduces (and partially
> finances)
> itself.
> For the individual capitalist/corporation, then,
> wage
> labour is merely a means to an overriding end
> (capital
> accumulation).  If we accept this end as rational
> *in
> so far* as it is necessary for capitalist
> reproduction, then the incomplete subsumption of
> labour under a wage system is also rational *to the
> extent* that it assists firms to increase monetary
> returns and reproduce themselves.
> Nicky
> Send instant messages to your online friends

Do you Yahoo!?
Everyone is raving about the all-new Yahoo! Mail beta.

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Thu Nov 30 2006 - 00:00:06 EST