[OPE-L:3138] Re: formulas for the rate of surplus value

andrew kliman (Andrew_Kliman@msn.com)
Thu, 26 Sep 1996 05:12:20 -0700 (PDT)

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A reply to Jerry's ope-l 3134.

Jerry: "Do others agree with Allin that this [definition of the rate of
surplus-value] is a matter of 'exposition/notation rather than substance'?"

Yes, from the mathematical point of view, which is how he meant it.

>From the rhetorical point of view, use of one or the other rate may have
substantive implications. There may be an ulterior motive to using one or the
other, e.g., to make the rate seem big or small, or to represent capitalist
production as a relation of free association, such as Allin and Marx,
respectively, alluded to.

One can write Allin's measure as f(s/v) = (s/v)/(s/v + 1) and thus keep Marx's
definition but also get something that varies between 0 and 1 and approaches 1
as s/v approaches infinity. Rather than rate of surplus-value, one can call
it the fraction of the working day for which no equivalent is paid

Andrew Kliman