RE: [OPE] devaluation and revaluation of variable capital

Date: Mon Feb 11 2008 - 19:26:59 EST

> I have done so only in the obvious way that increases in relative > surplus value devalue variable capital by diminishing the number of > hours required to "produce" an hour of labor power. Is that what you > mean?
Hi Michael;
The issue, as it is presented, in Volume III, concerns the impact
*for capital* of the release and tying-up of V.  Consider:
"If wages fall, owing to a fall in the value of labour-power
(although this may even be associated with a rise in the actual
price of labour), a portion of the capital previously laid out as
wages is set free. There is a release of variable capital. For
capital that is newly invested, this has simply the effect of
enabling it to function at an increased rate of surplus-value. 
The same quantity of labour is set in motion with less money
than before, and in this way the unpaid portion of labour
is increased at the cost of the paid portion. But for capital 
this was already invested earlier, not only does the rate of 
surplus-value increase, but on top of this a portion of the
capital previously laid out on wages is set free. This was formerly
tied up and formed a portion constantly deducted from the
proceeds of production, a portion which was laid out on wages
and had to function as variable capital if the business was to
proceed on the old scale. This portion now becomes available
and can be used for new capital investment, whether to extend
the same business or to function in another sphere of 
production." (Penguin ed, p. 210). 
Who, though, has presented a formal model that allows for
inter-temporal changes in the VLP caused by the release and
tying-up of V? For that matter, who has empirically studied
this question?  For that matter, who has empirically studied 
tendencies and counter-tendencies re changes in the VLP? 
In solidarity, Jerry
> >> I have mentioned this idea several times on the list, but Jerry> >> seems to be the only one who expressed any sympathy for it.> > Yes, we have been in broad agreement on issues related to the> > moral depreciation of *constant* capital. But, have you written> > here or elsewhere anything on "the release and tying-up of> > *variable* capital which is the result of the devaluation> > and revaluation of the elements of *variable* capital, i.e.> > the costs of reproduction of labour-power" (Vol 3, Penguin ed.,> > p. 212, emphasis added)?

ope mailing list

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Fri Feb 29 2008 - 00:00:03 EST