[OPE-L:1243] Re: determination of constant capital

akliman@acl.nyit.edu (akliman@acl.nyit.edu)
Tue, 27 Feb 1996 12:16:13 -0800

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Andrew, responding to Costas' ope-l 1201:

Yes, Costas, exactly right. The unchanged simultaneist rate of profit
when the physical wage bill and all else remains the same, and labor
requirements change, makes no sense in terms of Marx's value theory.

Of course, one can always create "epicycles" to "explain" why things don't
change. E.g., The computer in front of me isn't moving. Why? Well,
force F and force -F are both acting upon it, causing it to stay put.
A classic example of the kind of explanations that emerge from what
Lakatos called a "degenerative research programme." Similarly, the
simultaneist value calculations allow one to say that s and v have
changed proportionately, leaving the profit rate unchanged, but the
fact remains that all physical quantities remain unchanged, labor
requirements rise or fall, and the simultaneist profit rates ("value"
and "price," individual and general rates) remain unchanged.

Only exchange-values matter in the simultaneist interpretation, not
intrinsic value. So as long as changes in intrinsic value do not
affect exchange-values (relative values and prices), then all value
ratios, s/v, c/v, s/(c+v), etc. remain unaffected.

Andrew Kliman