[OPE-L:3817] Prices of production=bourgeois socialism

Paul Cockshot (wpc@cs.strath.ac.uk)
Thu, 12 Dec 1996 02:22:42 -0800 (PST)

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>Although there are frequently significant barriers to entry and exit and,
>relatedly, a significant percentage of capital invested takes the form of
>[inherently relatively immobile] stocks of constant fixed capital in
>most firms and branches of production ...
>.. if there are branches of production with significantly lower rates of
>profit, wouldn't we anticipate investment of money capital in those
>branches with a higher rate of profit and disinvestment in those branches
>of production with a lower rate of profit? ... and wouldn't this tend,
>_over time_ (how much time?), to at least cause the scattering of rates of
>profit to diminish (if not actually equalize)?

This would only be the case in the absence of structural change.
But such change is continuous. Under these circumstances industries
with high organic compositions in the form of fixed capital may
systematically find it hard to adapt their production to new
markets. Thus there will be a constant tendancy for high organic
compositions to have a depressed profit rate.

>Of course, an alternative hypothesis might be the theorization of a "dual
>economy", as has been done by the social structure of accumulation (SSA)
>school. That theory predicts higher rates of profit for the primary
>[core; oligopolistic] sector and that prediction _seems_ to be refuted by
>your data from the UK.

My figures are for the US in this case. It is interesting to see which
industries have a rate of profit that corresponds to that predicted
by the price of production theory - it is the regulated public

Prices of production correspond not to
capitalism but to bourgeois socialism. They demand public regulation
of investment and prices in order to ensure that all capitals
are 'fairly' treated.

Paul Cockshott