[OPE-L:4237] Re: The Effect of Turnover on the Rate of Profit

Gerald Lev (glevy@pratt.edu)
Mon, 17 Feb 1997 06:25:22 -0800 (PST)

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Re John's [OPE-L:4232]:

You seem to have missed the thrust of my comments in #4231. Yes, of
course, we only know the title that Marx planned to give to V3, Ch. 4.
However, if we consider the logical structure of V3, Part 1 and its
relation to the rest of V3 we might observe some "clues" about the
possible content of Ch. 4. Or, more specifically, we might be able to
extrapolate what would _not_ be included in Ch. 4.

For instance, only in Part Two do we see the systematic examination of
differing compositions of capital in differing branches of production.
This would suggest, by itself, that the level of abstraction of Ch. 4 is
at a more abstract level than that where there is the formation of a
general rate of profit and "many capitals."

Our discussions on moral depreciation have primarily taken place within
the context of considering: a) reductions in the price of elements of
constant fixed capital, and b) the effect of "BETTER" machines. Yet, ...
what are the implications of the subjects of "The Effect of Changes in
Price" (Ch. 6) and "Economy in the Use of Constant Capital" (Ch. 5)
being presented _after_ the plan to present "The Effect of Turnover on
the Rate of Profit"?

Couldn't one reasonably conclude that most of the topics that we have
been discussing relating to the turnover of fixed capital and
depreciation concern a more concrete level of abstraction than that
relevant to Ch. 4?

Of course, this raises many more questions. For instance, where logically
is the appropriate place to consider the turnover of fixed capital and
moral depreciation on the periodicity of the trade cycle? Marx does not
tell us.

While I agree that it is worthwhile to consider the relation of the
turnover of fixed capital to the rate of profit in terms of considering
what Marx wrote _after_ the drafts of V3, my point was additionally that
this topic should be considered in relation to the logical structure of
the rest of V3. Do you not agree? Why or why not?

In solidarity, Jerry