Home > Off Blog > Oh! Now, the panic sets in?

Oh! Now, the panic sets in?

September 7, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

Apparently, there is now at least one economist out there who has figured out he is clueless – more to follow in due course:

There is a critical point that I fear the commentariat is just not getting. In my darker moments I fear that some of my fellow economists aren’t getting it either but we aren’t going to go there.

Look at these two graphs because they tell you the fundamental problem in America today:



We have very low capacity utilization (75%) and very high unemployment (10%).

That is, we have factories sitting idle for lack of workers – low capacity utilization. At the same time we have workers sitting idle for lack of factories – high unemployment.

There are machines waiting to be worked and people waiting to work them but they are not getting together. The labor market is failing to clear.

This is a fucking disaster.

A fucking disaster indeed – a needless fucking disaster right now. But, soon, a catastrophe of unimaginable scale.

To go over this once more for the hard of hearing:

Two labourers, each working 12 hours daily, cannot produce the same mass of surplus-value as 24 who work only 2 hours, even if they could live on air and hence did not have to work for themselves at all. In this respect, then, the compensation of the reduced number of labourers by intensifying the degree of exploitation has certain insurmountable limits.

K. Marx, Capital Volume Three, chapter 15, section II

It’s like this dude:

Two workers putting in 12 hours days can produce as much bread as 12 workers putting in a two hour day, but – and this is the fucking point – those two workers won’t be able to eat all the bread they can produce!

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