[OPE-L:272] The general (f)law of capitalist accumulation [digression] (fwd)

glevy@acnet.pratt.edu (glevy@acnet.pratt.edu)
Mon, 16 Oct 1995 13:52:40 -0700

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Jim inferred that I should continue to forward posts on this thread to
OPE-L, so here's another one. If we really want to discuss this issue,
let's do so on OPE-L rather than just keep forwarding stuff from PEN-L --

Date: Mon, 16 Oct 1995 10:10:56 -0700
From: Gilbert Skillman
Subject: [PEN-L:963] Re: The general (f)law of capitalist accumulati

Paul writes:
> ----
> I would have said that it is because interest bearing capital
> is not a commodity, but a social relation, and that thus
> analysis based on supply and demand misses the point.

Paul might have said this, but Marx certainly didn't, as any reading
of Capital, Volume III, Ch. 21 will make clear. For example: "The
form of lending results from capital's characteristic here of
emerging as a commodity, or in other words, it results from the fact
that money as capital becomes a commodity." In speaking of supply
and demand for interest capital I only paraphrased Marx's analysis in
the last part of that chapter.

When Marx speaks of capital as a social relation, it seems to me that
he refers specifically to the circuit of industrial capital M-C-M',
involving the purchase and subsumption of labor power.

To say that interest-bearing capital is a social relation is not to
deny that it is influenced by supply and demand considerations.
Indeed, the true social relation could be obscured by the same sort
of "fetishism" Marx speaks of at the end of Ch. 1 in Volume I. In
other words, all exchanges are social relations, but that is not to
say that demand and supply considerations do not arise.

Gil Skillman