[OPE-L:4034] Depreciation in Vol 2

john erns (ernst@pipeline.com)
Tue, 21 Jan 1997 23:33:18 -0800 (PST)

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In previous posts, responding to Andrew's request
for citations concerning the my interpretation of
the concept of moral depreciation in Marx's works,
I noted 2 -- one in CAPITAL, the other in the
Collected Works. Since then, I've found another in
the 2nd Vol. of CAPITAL. (p249-250,Pelican)(Ch 8,
(Sec. 2) In a discussing depreciation in the railroad
industry, Marx states:

"Wear and tear is occasioned in the first place by actual
use. As a general rule, the rails wear out in proportion
to the number of trains ..."

"A further item of wear and tear is that caused by natural
forces. Sleepers, for example, do not just deteriorate as
a a result of actual use, but also from general rot..."

"Finally, as is the case throughout large-scale industry,
moral depreciation also plays its part. After ten years
have elapsed, it is generally possible to buy the same
quantity of carriages and locomotives for 30,000 as
previously cost 40,000. A depreciation of 25 per cent
on the market price must thus be reckoned with on this
material, even if there is no depreciation in the
use-value." (Lardner, RAILWAY ECONOMY, P 120)

John