[OPE-L:3467] Re: More on skilled labour

Paul Cockshott (wpc@cs.strath.ac.uk)
Fri, 18 Oct 1996 04:41:02 -0700 (PDT)

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>Hi Allin,
>I think you might find my answer frustrating, but here goes!
>What you have argued does not IMO distinguish, in the manner you intend,
>between the case I am putting--that skilled labor can generate surplus
>value in addition to that attributable to simple labor--and the case
>Sweezy/Meek put--that the additional productivity of skilled labor
>simply reproduces the training time involved, with the side effect that
>training is not an additional source of surplus value.
>In fact, it presents the case for "my" side, because you show that if
>training converts a single finger typist into a touch-typist, and this
>doubles the typing speed, then an additional source of surplus value has
>been created.

Extra surplus value, in this case relative surplus value will only have
been created to the extent that typing enters into the necessary labour
time of workers in general. If training doubles productivity, and if
the real wages remains fixed, then surplus value in the economy as a whole
will rise by one half of the amount of typing labour that was directly
and indirectly embodied in the real wage.
In this respect training is equivalent to technical change.
Paul Cockshott