[OPE-L:109] RE: More Paradox of Book I, Ch 25 (more digression)

Paul Cockshott (wpc@clyder.gn.apc.org)
Fri, 22 Sep 1995 06:37:30 -0700

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Now, if we are concerning ourselves only with the outer, then Marx's
statement that the wage is the dependent variable would hold; however, he
describes the rate of accumulation as the independent variable in the
part of Ch 25 where the assumption is that there is no increase in the
technical composition of capital (so there might as well be no fixed
capital). It is the second part, where the technical composition
that the wage is affected not by the rate of accumulation as such but by
size of the reserve army and, thus, that the existence of fixed capital
The distinction between inner and outer levels of explanation
applies not only to wages and exploitation.
At the inner level of explanation it is surplus value in the
form of profits that drive accumulation. In the outer form,
derived from the reproduction schemes in vol 2 it is the investment
and consumption expenditure of capitalists that determines the
level of profit.

I think that one of our key tasks is to bring out the full
implications of this outer level of explanation which operates
in the domain of circulation - reversing everything.
Both are simultaneously valid, non-contradictory, but mutually
constraining explanations.