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

From: ajit sinha (sinha_a99@YAHOO.COM)
Date: Fri Dec 01 2006 - 16:57:29 EST

--- clyder@GN.APC.ORG wrote:

> Quoting ajit sinha <sinha_a99@YAHOO.COM>:
> > Imagine a large capitalist economy which produces
> a
> > huge amount of surplus however employs just a few
> > thousand workers (since you guys are not ready to
> > accept zero worker situation). Now, if you apply
> > Marx's calculation here, then the labor-values of
> > commodities would be close to zero and if wages
> are
> > what is necessary to reproduce the labor-power,
> then
> > the rate of profits would be quite high, and this
> high
> > rate of profits (within Marx's calculations) could
> > only be explained by a very high rate of surplus
> > value.
> This is not evident to me. In what sense is the
> capitalist economy 'large' if it employs only a
> few thousand workers?
> Is it large in the Tonnage of output?
> It is clearly not large in the normal sense of the
> word - employing lots of people.
Paul, which economy is larger today: US or Indian?
Most of the people hold that it is the US economy.
Why? Because it employs more workers than the Indian
economy? Obviously your definition is not shared by

> It would not make sense to say that it was large in
> money terms since the the value of money is
> arbitrary
> and can be changed by a currency revaluation like
> that
> of De Gaulle.
> You are assuming I think that wages are low relative
> to
> the total product - which does imply a high rate of
> exploitation,
> I dont see that there is anything paradoxical here -
> counter factual
> but not paradoxical. Counter factual because we know
> that the
> range of variation of rates of surplus value is
> actually quite
> small say 60% to 200% in current capitalist
> economies. This
> also appears to be stable over long historical
> periods.
I think I have already answed to such arguments. I
don't want to keep repeating myself--it's tiring.
> > This makes no sense to me. Capitalists are in
> business
> > to make profits (M-M'), if a capitalist finds that
> > s/he can increase her/his profit by introducing a
> > technique that displaces labor, then why wouln't
> s/he
> > do it? As a matter of fact Marx's argument is that
> > actually the dynamics of capitalism is such that
> this
> > will keep happening--that's why my limiting case
> of
> > this dynamics is something Marxists cannot close
> their
> > eyes to.
> I think you have to consider the dynamics of the
> process
> more carefully. If the rate of surplus value rises
> unusually
> high, then labour is cheap and it will pay
> capitalists to
> use labour intensive rather than capital intensive
> techniques.
> Thus the process you hypothesise will be self
> limiting.
What kind of theory you have to claim anything like
that? And you should be careful in using terms like
labor or capital intensive technologies--as they are
not scientific terms.

> We know empirically that capital intensive
> industries do
> experience lower rates of profit, so in general
> capitalists
> will prefer to invest in labour intensive
> industries.
How many times I have to say that my problem is not
empirical, it is logical. Cheers, ajit sinha
> This message was sent using IMP, the Internet
> Messaging Program.

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

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Sun Dec 31 2006 - 00:00:04 EST