Mathematical analysis of Marx's claims

Jim Drysdale jimd48 at
Mon Dec 17 23:13:59 MST 2001

>From Jim Drysdale,

Karl writes....

snip>  or is Marx wrong?

JD:  No.

All will be brief......note: some of the following will be quotes.  I save
time by not crediting. (too much)

The rate of profit falls because the value of constant capital (see below)
has risen as against that of variable capital (see below) and less capital
is employed.   This, of course, the organic composition of capital.
This capital accumulation, progressively, more and more value
is in (more productive) machinery,
requiring less and less labour power to produce more and more goodies.
And, the use of labour *alone*
embodies value.

Also, Capitalism will not be superseded because of lack of profit.

Crises occur within the antagonistic phases of M - C  then C -
M.......purchase and sale.   Briefly.....capitalist production is not
*simultaneously* sale and purchase.  But, C - M - C is.   In C - M - C only
a miser would hoard money.

Overproduction is the norm in commodity production.  No crisis can occur
unless sale and purchase are separated from one another and come into
conflict, or the contradictions contained in money as a means of payment
actually come into play.    That is, a crisis can arise....1) .in the
reconversion of money into productive capital and 2) through changes in the
value of the  elements of productive capital.

Karl offers....

snip> Let C = capital, P = Production, and W = wages.

JD:   Marx uses only C (capital...self expanding value) which is of two
components.....c...the sum of money laid out upon the means of
production...and.....v...the sum of money expended upon labour power.  Which
is the
essential, value embodying use value  (commodity ) of capitalist society.

The exchange value of commodified labour power is, wage.  (determined, on
average, as all commodities,  by socially necessary labour time)
And, of course, all commodities are exchanged at their equivalent.

c represents the portion that has *become*  constant capital and v....the
portion that has *become*  variable capital.  We also denote surplus value

Vol 1 pp 223....' Therefore in order that our investigation may lead to
accurate results, we must make abstraction from that portion of the value of
the product, in which constant capital alone appears, and consequently must
equate the constant capital to zero or make c = 0.   This is merely the
application of a mathematical rule, employed whenever we operate with
constant and variable magnitudes, related to each other by the symbols of
addition and subtraction only.'

This says that the use of labour power both conserves and adds value.

As c = 0 then, we have.......the capital advanced is.....*not* c +
and....the value of the product is *not* (c + v) + s......but......(v + s)

' The relative quantity produced ( ie. of surplus value), or the increase
per cent of the variable capital, is determined, it is plain, by the ratio
of the surplus value to the variable capital, or is expressed by s / v.'

for example.....say c (const) was £410.   and v (variable) was £90. and....s
was £90.

with c = 0 then......s / a ratio of 90 / 90 which is an increase
of 100%.

' This relative increase in the value of the variable capital, or the
relative magnitude of the surplus value, I call,
" The rate of surplus value". '

' The rate of surplus value is therefore an exact expression for the degree
of exploitation of labour power by capital, or of the labourer by the

and.....s / v is.....surplus labour /  necessary labour

Karl, given time, I may look at that site.  However, hope that the above



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