マルクスの「現実の資本の過剰生産」概念について

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松尾, 純 ; Jun, Matsuo ; 桃山学院大学経済学部 (2008)
  • Journal: 桃山学院大学経済経営論集 = ST. ANDREW'S UNIVERSITY ECONOMIC AND BUSINESS REVIEW, volume 50, issue 3, pages 59-80 (issn: 0286-9721)
  • Subject: 資本の絶対的過剰生産 | 相対的過剰人口 | 現実の資本の過剰生産 | 資本の過多 | 過剰資本

Professor Noriko Maehata and I have been engaged in discussions concerning the understanding of the concept of "actual overproduction of capital" as contained in Karl Marx's Das Kapital Volume III. The discussion originated in Professor Maehata's criticism("'Law of the Tendency of the Rate of Profit to Fall' and 'Absolute Overproduction of Capital' - An Issue in Research on the Theory of Crisis," Economic Society of Rikkyo University(Rikkyo Keizai Gaku Kenkyu), Vol. 55, No. 1, July 2001)of my understanding of "actual overproduction of capital." I immediately responded in my paper entitled, "'Actual Overproduction of Capital' and 'Absolute Overproduction of Capital' - A Response to the Criticisms of Professor Noriko Maehata -"(St. Andrew's University Economic and Business Review, Vol. 43, No. 4, March 2002). In answer to my response, Professor Maehata published a second paper entitled, "Law of the Tendency of the Rate of Profit to Fall and Crisis - Regarding 'Actual Overproduction of Capital'"(Keizaigaku Kenkyu(Hokkaido University), Vol. 56, No. 2, November 2006). This second criticism more clearly delineated the differences in our two views. Specifically, the problems contained in Professor Maehata's understanding of "actual overproduction of capital" became very clear. The purpose of this present paper is to examine the problems in Professor Maehata's understanding of "actual overproduction of capital." In her second paper, Professor Maehata explained the mechanism of the occurrence of "actual overproduction of capital" in the form of the following causal nexus: "increased producing powers of labor → advancement of the organic composition of capital → fall in profit rate and increased mass of profit → 'concurrence among capitals("small split capitals" and "fresh branches of capital")' → rapid absorption of relative overpopulation and 'reduction' in relative overpopulation (but not its 'exhaustion')→ rise in wages → diminished degree of exploitation of labor → rapid decrease in profit rate → occurrence of 'actual overproduction of capital' → 'concurrence among capitals' → 'exhaustion' of relative overpopulation → occurrence of 'absolute overproduction of capital'." I cannot agree with Professor Maehata's explanation that "actual overproduction of capital" occurs as a result of the causal nexus: "rapid absorption of relative overpopulation → rise in wages → decrease in mass of profit → rapid decrease in profit rate." My disagreement is based on the following expositions of "actual overproduction of capital" contained in the manuscripts of Volume III of Das Kapital.(1)"Actual overproduction of capital" is the "overproduction of means of production which may serve to exploit labor at a given degree of exploitation." "A fall in the intensity of exploitation below a certain point... calls forth disturbances and stoppages in the capitalist production process, and the destruction of capital."(2)"Overproduction of capital is accompanied by more or less considerable relative overpopulation."(3)The rate of profit is lowered through the process of "increased producing powers of labor → accumulation of capital." This process simultaneously creates relative overpopulation.(4)Relative overpopulation is not employed by the surplus-capital. Even if employed, relative overpopulation would be employed at a "low degree of exploitation," which would "call forth disturbances and stoppages in the capitalist production process, and the destruction of capital." Professor Maehata makes the following argument. "Faced with a declining rate of profit, 'small split capitals' and 'fresh branches of capital' are used as capital(that is, these capitals are combined with relative overpopulation), which gives rise to 'concurrence among capitals.' In the process of 'concurrence among capitals,' overpopulation is used by capital newly trying to become independent and additions to existing capital. As a result, overpopulation is reduced." However, this is not the thinking of Marx. Marx's assertion is as follows.<" The rate of profit will fall as increased producing powers and accumulation of capital advances. However, at the same time, the mass of profit will increase. While the "increase in the mass of profit compensates for the decline in the rate of profit," this "compensation" applies "only to the total social capitals and to the big, firmly placed capitalists. The new additional capital operating independently does not enjoy any such compensating conditions. It must still win them." If they cannot "win them" through competitive struggle, these capitals become excess capital. If concurrence among capitals becomes intensified, an even greater number of "small split capitals" and "fresh branches of capital"(in other words, capital newly trying to become independent and additions to existing capital)that are unable to "exploit labor at the 'intensity of exploitation' necessary for the 'sound' and 'normal' development of the capitalist production process"(Maehata)become excess capital. At the same time, the excess population employed by excess capital will continue to increase.>
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