[OPE-L:6364] (Monopoly) Rates of Profit?

Gerald Levy (glevy@pratt.edu)
Fri, 27 Mar 1998 19:23:19 -0500 (est)

[Yet another try at posting this ...]

Allin wrote on Tue, 24 Mar:

> You're saying that capitalists can jack up prices to the extent
> that, in the aggregate of wage goods, price exceeds value.

No I'm not saying that. What I am saying is that if the firms producing
means of consumption for workers sell their commodities at a price in
excess of value then that can lead to a decline in the customary standard
of living for workers. I.e. monopoly power can lead to a reduction of real
wages and, thereby, a reduction in the value of labour-power. Thus in the
aggregate price doesn't exceed value because what the capitalists [in the
monopoly sectors] gain, workers lose. There is thus a re-distribution of
value among classes rather than just among capitalists.

> I
> think that's just inflation. If the labor market is reasonably
> tight, workers will be able to get money wages increases to keep
> up with inflation. What matters is the situation in the labor
> market.

It matters (of course) what happens in the market for labour-power. It
also matters to workers what happens in the markets where they spend their
money wages.

In solidarity, Jerry