[OPE-L:1644] Re: Do capitalists accumulate?

Paul Zarembka (ecopaulz@ubvms.cc.buffalo.edu)
Sat, 30 Mar 1996 14:41:07 -0800

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Allin, What is your defintion of "accumulation of capital"? This term is
so loosely used as to become almost meaningless, in my view. Paul

On Thu, 28 Mar 1996, Allin Cottrell wrote:

> On Thu, 28 Mar 1996, Alan Freeman wrote:
> > The simultaneous paradigm produces the absurd result that
> > [capitalists] can accumulate with a rising rate of profit.
> Can I check others' understanding of this point? I thought that
> the Okishio theorem said only this: If the real wage is held
> constant (rather than the rate of exploitation), then a "viable"
> technical change (i.e. one that raises the individual capitalist's
> rate of profit at the going price vector) will, when generalized,
> also raise the general rate of profit. If that's right, the theorem
> does not rule out the effect Alan is talking about (accumulation
> leads to a falling rate of profit): that effect would come about
> (a) if accumulation took place on an unchanged technical basis; and/or
> (b) if the value of labour power rather than the real commodity wage
> tends to remain roughly constant over the long haul.
> To flip that over, the proposition that capitalists can "accumulate with a
> rising rate of profit" is guaranteed, on the standard approach, only
> on condition that capitalists are always coming up with sufficient
> "viable" technical changes, and that the real wage does not rise.
> Am I off-base?
> Allin Cottrell
> Department of Economics
> Wake Forest University