[OPE-L:7477] [OPE-L:1012] Re: Marx's Concept of Prices of Production

John R. Ernst (ernst@PIPELINE.COM)
Tue, 01 Jun 1999 15:40:02

RE: Paul's OPE-L 1010
Fred had written:

> as a long-run tendency, not as an actual fact in every period
Paul commented:

Fred what is your attitude as to whether or not this assumption is
empirically valid.
Allin and I have presented evidence that in the US and the UK there is
a systematic negative correlation between sectoral organic compositions
of capital and rates of profit. This is directly counter to the key
assumption above.

My comment: Paul, when you and Allin analyze the sectoral organic
compositions of capital, how do you treat the various forms of
surplus value -- profit of enterprise, interest, rent, taxes, etc.?
Further, how do you deal with differing stratifications of fixed
capital? For example, if capitals with larger compositions have
proportionately newer quantities of fixed capital, the rate of
profit may negatively correlated but the rate of return on
investment may have a positive correlation.

Paul, I do tend to agree with you concerning differing rates of productivity
increases in the 19th and 20th centuries. Like you, I'd be interested
in seeing the data.