Saturday, 25 February 2017

Northern Soul Classics - Remember Me - The Whispers

With the same backing track as "Times A Wastin" - Fuller Brothers, a great dancer from The Whispers, reminiscent of the Top Rank, Hanley.

Friday, 24 February 2017

Friday Night Disco - Bourgie Bourgie - Gladys Knight & The Pips

Theories of Surplus Value, Part I, Chapter 3 - Part 44

Marx reviews this analysis so far.

“We said at the start that in the different spheres of production there are different proportions as between the newly-added labour (which partly replaces the variable capital laid out in wages, and partly forms the profit, the unpaid surplus-labour) and the constant capital to which this labour is added. We could however assume an average proportion, for example, a—labour added, b—constant capital; or we could assume that the proportion of the latter to the former is 2 : 1 = 2/3 : 1/3.” (p 133)

In that case, the workers and capitalists in any particular sphere, only have enough income as wages and profit to buy a third of their output. But, the capitalists of this sphere own the remaining two-thirds of the output of that sphere. If they are to continue in business, they must sell this remaining output, so as to realise its value, and so be able to reproduce the constant capital used in its production, whose equivalent value it represents.

But, the analysis so far has raised the question of to whom these other two-thirds are to be sold? If the workers and capitalists in each can only together buy a third of their own output, from their incomes, the answer clearly cannot be that this remainder can be bought from the incomes of workers and capitalists from other industries.

If the value of output from industry A is £3,000 and from B £9,000, then incomes in A will buy £1,000, and in B £3,000. If all of A is bought, because its workers and capitalists buy £1,000, and workers and capitalists from B buy £2,000 worth, A's problem is resolved only at the expense of making B's worse, because it can now sell only £1,000 of its total output, rather than £3,000.

We also saw that introducing additional industries only makes this problem worse. Here, A's output was £3,000, and the shortfall of demand was £2,000. If B's output was £6,000, giving combined income for its workers and capitalists of £2,000, this could now fill the gap. But, now there is a lack of demand, equal to £6,000 required for B's output.

Clearly, it is untenable to look for a solution that requires the amount of output to continue to expand, so as to provide additional revenues, when that very process increases the value of output even further, beyond what existing revenues can buy.

“So from this it became clear that the shifting of the difficulty from Product I to Product II, etc., in a word, merely bringing in to the problem the exchange of commodities, was of no avail.” (p 134)

The problem was then considered from the other angle, whereby the value of final production – twelve metres of linen, thirty-six hours labour, £36 – divided into £12 new value added by the weaver, plus £24 of value transferred by constant capital. But, it was equally clear here that this £24 of value of the constant capital, itself could only represent the value of new labour added by the spinner, machine maker, flax grower, wood producer, iron maker and so on, and that for each of these additional producers, we had to take account of the fact that, in addition to the new value added by their labour, they in turn used constant capital, which formed part of the value of their output.

Yet, it was obvious for some of these producers that although this value of constant capital formed a part of the value of their output, it did not form a part of their product that was exchanged, or for which they obtained an amount of value in exchange, as revenue, therefore. A portion of the flax growers output was not exchanged but used to physically reproduce their seed, as manure and so on; a portion of the machine maker's output was not sold, but was used to reproduce their own machines; a portion of the wood grower's output would similarly be used to grow replacement trees, and of the iron producer would be required to repair their own equipment, even if it passed first through the hands of the machine maker.

If the weaver buys yarn from the spinner with six metres of linen, and a loom from the machine maker with two metres of linen, this may appear as income for the spinner and machine maker. But, of course, they can only use a portion, a third, of this linen as income, because two-thirds of the value of the yarn and the machine they sold to the weaver comprised their own constant capital. They must use two-thirds of the linen they receive not as revenue, but to reproduce their own constant capital. Similarly, when they pay for the flax, the wood, iron, leather and so on that they receive as inputs, the linen thereby obtained by their own suppliers does not represent all revenue for them either, because only that portion which represents the new value added constitutes their revenue, and the remainder must be used to reproduce their own constant capital.

“Something would always be left over and a progression to infinity.” (p 138)

If we consider the position of the flax grower, or machine maker, a portion of the output used to reproduce their constant capital – seed and machines – itself constitutes new labour as well as constant capital. The flax grower must exert labour to produce that portion of their output that replaces their seed, as much as for that portion, which produces flax supplied to the spinner, and the machine maker must exert new labour to produce the machines required for their own use, as much as in the production of looms, spinning machines and agricultural equipment. This component of value, therefore, is revenue, and is used as such.

Thursday, 23 February 2017

Brenda Procter - A Fighter For Her Class

I was saddened to learn yesterday of the death of my old friend and comrade Brenda Procter, who for more than thirty years had been a prominent member of the Miners' Wives Group, and a series of other mining communities related activities.  She was a real working-class fighter for her class.  I first met Bren in 1981, long before the 1984 strike.  I met Bren as a result of my contact with her next door neighbour Paul Barnett, who later joined the Stoke Socialist organiser group, for a short time.

The Stoke Socialist Organiser group arose in 1979, as a result of the creation of the Socialist Campaign for a Labour Victory.  The SCLV was the project of Workers Action, of which I had been a member since 1974.  It also drew in supporters of Socialist Charter, and won the affiliation of a number of CLP's, branches and PPC's across the country, including one Jeremy Corbyn.  There was one Socialist Charter member in Stoke, at the time, Jim Barrow, a journalist who like me had gone to University after having worked for several years beforehand.  Both of us continued to maintain close contact with the world of work, and with the trades union movement, we had spent much of our time in over the previous years.

In the early days of the Stoke Socialist Organiser group it had rapid success starting off with around 15 members.  But, apart from myself, Jim, and Neil Dawson, all the other members were students, and as Trotsky pointed out, in relation to students, they can be more trouble than they are worth, unless they are part of a large proletarian organisation that can keep them under control.  Their essentially petit-bourgeois, dilettantist approach means that they tend to flit in and out of political activity, and sure enough within about three weeks, 90% of the students flounced out of the group.

I paint this picture, not just to give an impression of the times, but also to make the contrast between this studentist politics and the working-class politics of Bren.  Over the next year, another couple of students came into the group, whilst Jim Barrow also left, as Socialist Charter nationally engaged in work on London Labour Briefing.  The only workers left in the local group were then myself and Neil Dawson.  In the meantime, the group suffered an infiltration by a member of the Sparts, which led to Martin Thomas coming up from London to carry out his expulsion.

Again indicative of this dilletantism, it was after this event that two of the student members told me that they had known that the person concerned was a Spart, because he sold copies of their paper around the Poly, sometimes to them, after Socialist organiser meetings, and after I had left.  Yet neither of these students thought it fitting to have provided this information beforehand!  Over this period, I found myself increasingly frustrated at this kind of behaviour, which left me spending endless amounts of time driving from one end of the city to another for meetings, only to find that these students, including the former Branch organiser, never turned up.  In the end, I had to ask Martin Thomas about the situation, and we agreed to expel the former Branch Organiser.

So, by 1981, the Socialist Organiser Branch was down to just two members, myself and Neil Dawson.  Yet, things were actually turning up in many ways.  It was liberating not to be wasting so much time in pointless journeys, for one thing.  But, also by 1981, the long hard work of the last seven years, in the Labour Party and local Trades Council, had begun to pay off.  Both had turned left, and in the Labour Party branches, the moribund organisations had begun to flower once more.

In 1981, I was elected as Assistant Secretary of Stoke District Labour Party and on to its Executive Committee with a vote that was twice as large as the next highest EC member.  At the time, I was also leading a number of community actions, via the Labour Party Branch, as well as being involved in trying to set up local Rank and File Mobilising Committee Groups and so on, which kept the media full of stories, and kep John Golding busy threatening to have me expelled from the party.

After the meeting, I was approached by the late John McCready, a pottery union militant, who I also subsequently supported (unsuccessfully) for the nomination for the Stoke North PPC (won by Joan Walley).  I'd first met John, back in 1974, when I sat on an ASTMS negotiating team to hammer out a Spheres of Influence Agreement with CATU, the pottery union.  John was on their EC, as was another comrade I already knew, Geoff Bagnall, who had been a member of the IMG with Jason Hill. John had numerous questions, for me, such as "Is it true you support Troops Out of Ireland?"  It was, and in fact, the Labour Committee on Ireland, was only one of a long series of such campaigns that I was involved in at the time.

John was a member of Stoke South CLP, and with him was another Stoke South member Paul Barnett, who lived in The Broadway at Meir.  From that point on, I would visit Paul and his wife Lynn and their four kids every week to talk over the latest paper, and local political events.  I was not alone, I would often run into Steve Martin or John Pickett from the Militant, who were also trying to draw Paul into their orbit.  Paul eventually joined SO, and wrote a few articles covering his area of interest in theatre, particularly reviews of the then current "Boys From The Blackstuff".  As an added bonus for me, Paul also used to service my car.

It was in this context that I first met Bren who would come round from next door.  At the time, Bren was married to Ken.  If I remember correctly, Ken was a biker, or at least 36 years on, I have an image in my mind of him wearing a leather motorbike jacket.  Ken worked at Florence Colliery in Fenton, though his parents owned the local Procter's Coach company.

So, when the 1984 Miners' Strike broke out, I was not at all surprised to see Bren taking a leading role in it, organising the local Miners Wives group, and from the start being regularly on the picket line to turn back anyone even thinking of crossing, and standing four square against the police that tried to keep the pickets down to the then maximum six.

I can't remember if Bren came with me and a number of local miners to Merseyside to collect money after I'd organised a tour there with Lol Duffy, and other comrades in the area, but on almost every occasion when something was going on, Bren was involved in it.  At the end of 1984, I took over was Secretary of the North Staffs Miners Support Committee, set up by the North Staffs Trades Council.  Every week, in that capacity, as well as my capacity as organiser of my Branch LP Miners Levy, I met with Joe Wills, up at the NUM offices in Burslem, and shortly after taking over as Secretary of the Support Committee, I organised with the NUM, a mass picket of Wolstanton Colliery, where Joe had previously worked, and where my comrade the late John Locket was a prominent figure.

One again, Bren was there, bringing a large number of Miners Wives with her, and the picket, which drew in around 300-400 people, also brought in local MP Mark Fisher, from Stoke Central.  In the following weeks, we also organised a number of such mass pickets at the Meaford power station.

Even after the defeat of the strike, working-class morale and organisation did not dissipate quickly.  In 1985, I took over as President of the North Staffs Trades Council, and for the two years I held that position, there were still attendances each month of around 80 delegates.  And, during that time, we drew in a number of speakers from disputes that were going on around the country, notably the Silentnight dispute, where all the workers had been sacked.

We organised a leafleting outside the Co-op furniture store in Hanley, in the not unreasonable belief that the Co-op might itself be amenable to such activity.  Unfortunately, it turned out that the manager of the store was more concerned with the stores sales of Silentnight beds than he was the rights of Silentnight workers.  Bren and a group of Miners Wives turned up to take part in the activity,a nd we split ourselves between the two store entrances.  Myself, and another Trades Council activist, Andy Day, who also worked in the Hanley Peace Centre, took the front doors, and Bren and the others were on the side doors.  Shortly after we had started leafleting, a police van pulled up, and a sergeant got out to tell all of us that if we did not go, by the time he returned, we would be arrested.

After a short discussion, we agreed there was no point all of us risking getting arrested, so just me and Andy remained on the front doors.  Sure enough, when the sergeant returned we got nicked for "Behaviour likely to result in a breach of the peace."  When questioned as to exactly what that behaviour was, we were told that it was handing out leaflets that someone might take offence too, and thereby respond violently!  Not surprisingly, the charges were later dropped.

Bren later entered a relationship with Phil Pender who along with his brother Chris, was a member of my Labour party Branch in Tunstall.  Both Phil and Chris for a brief period joined the Stoke North SO group, which met in the Hole In the Wall pub in the back streets of Tunstall, off America Street, and just up from the Torch.  Both Phil and Brenda, joined Scargill's SLP.

I last saw Bren, I think back in 2011, when I had gone to a meeting of the NSTC, Chaired by Jason, to oppose the new round of austerity that the Tories were inflicting.  I commented in my speech to that meeting that it reminded me in many ways of how things were back in 1974, when I first got involved in political activity.

Brenda Procter was one of those working class heroes whose mettle was forged in the fire of that time.

Theories of Surplus Value, Part I, Chapter 3 - Part 43

Marx then turns to the position from the standpoint of the machinery producer. They produce machines for the weaver, spinner and yarn producer, as well as producing machines for their own use in producing other machines. Measured in terms of linen, this comes to two metres for the loom, one metre for the spinning machine, one metre for agricultural machines, or four metres of linen in total, which is the equivalent of a value of twelve hours labour or £12.

But, again, of this total value of machinery supplied to these other producers, it is only the revenue component – the component equal to the value newly added by labour, and equal to wages and profit – that can be consumed by the machine maker. The other component of the value of the machine, the constant capital, must be reproduced. The machine maker must use linen to buy these commodities – wood, iron, leather and so on – from the suppliers of these commodities, or as with the flax grower, who reproduces their seed from their own output, the machine maker must reproduce their own machines out of their own output.

Looking at the machine maker's production, the value of a machine is comprised two-thirds constant capital, and one-third new value added by labour. Consequently, only one third of the linen they obtain represents revenue, which can be consumed.

In total, they can consume 0.66 metres of linen from loom production, 0.33 metres from spinning machine production, and 0.33 metres from agricultural machine making, which makes 1.33 metres altogether. The remainder of the 2.66 metres of linen they have obtained represents the value of the constant capital contained in those machines. Out of this, they must pay their own suppliers for that constant capital.

Marx assumes that of the value of this constant capital (2.66 metres = eight hours labour = £8) raw material used in their production constitutes two-thirds, whilst the other third is comprised of the wear and tear of their own machinery, used in the production. As described above, the position of this machine is the same as for the flax grower, who has to replace their own seed, but Marx analyses it further later on.

The amount of linen equivalent for wood, iron, etc. comes down to 1.78 metres. But, its necessary to refer back to the machinery producer again at this point, because the wood producer and iron maker also use machines in their own production, and they must therefore hand some linen back to the machine producer equal to the value of machinery used in their output.

The situation is, however, more straightforward in respect of those extraction industries, because they do not use any raw materials for processing, so the value of their output divides into the value of wear and tear of the machines used in production, plus the value of the new labour added.

The point being here that there are innumerable exchanges that could continue to mushroom out of the total production. Just as was the case in trying to find sufficient demand from revenue, by introducing revenue from additional capitals only compounded the problem, because the total value of output necessarily grew faster than revenue, so its impossible to resolve the problem on the back of exchange itself.

“And so we might go on calculating to infinity, with ever smaller fractions, but never able to divide the 12 yards of linen without a remainder.” (p 133)

The linen here represents the consumption fund, and consequently is equal to, and can only be consumed by revenue – the value added by labour, or v + s. But, in examining the production of the linen, in ever more detail, we find that the total value of production is greater than the value of this final output, i.e. the linen, because it necessarily involves the production of constant capital used not in the production of the final output, but also in the production of constant capital itself.

In other words, the value of the consumption fund, of final output, is equal to v + s, but the value of total output is equal to c + v + s, so that it is impossible for the value of total output to be resolved into incomes – wages, profit, interest and rent – as Smith and his inheritors claim. National Income/Expenditure does not equal national output, but only the value of the consumption fund, the new value added by labour during the year.

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Vote Labour In Stoke and Copeland

Vote Labour


23rd. February

In the by-elections tomorrow in Stoke central and Copeland, workers should vote Labour.  They should do so for all the reasons Marxists always advise workers to support the workers' party. 

“As the experiences of the Russian Revolution teach us – remember this in England and America! – the most important thing of all is to stay in the midst of the masses of workers. You will often go wrong with them, but never leave the mass organisations of the working class, however reactionary they may be at any given moment”.

(Zinoviev’s closing speech at the 15th Session of the Second Congress of the Comintern) 

Particularly, at the current moment, the Labour Party following the election of Corbyn, as Leader, in 2015, is moving Left, and so all of the old excuses of the left sects ring even more hollow today, as they ossify in their self-imposed isolation from the working-class, and its main political organisation.  No Marxist would suggest that Corbyn's Labour Party is perfect, though it is an improvement on what has existed over the last thirty years, but perfection only springs into existence ready formed, in the minds of fantasists and deists.  In reality, anything even approaching perfection has to be forged through hard work, over long periods.  The best conditions for workers identifying what is good or bad, and what needs to be improved in the existing Labour Party, therefore, arise when it is tested in that real fire of class struggle.  We need Labour MP's and a Labour government to test that mettle, and to forge ever harder tools and weapons.

Of course, for an ordinary worker in Stoke the recent events may weigh heavily on their hand as they hold the pencil in their hand ready to make their mark in the polling booth.  If they were a Leave voter, they may on the one hand, be concerned that Labour were opposed to Brexit, and that the Labour candidate Gareth Snell correctly stated in one tweet that "Brexit is a load of shit".  They may, on that basis consider voting for the parties that honestly support Brexit, rather than are committing themselves to it, only after the referendum, and so as not to risk losing the support of Labour voters in Leave areas.  So, they may consider voting for the Tories or more rationally UKIP.

But, even as a Leave voter, they would be wrong to do so.  In all polls going back years, prior to the referendum, the majority of voters, including in areas like Stoke, rated the EU and Immigration, as coming low down on their lists of concerns, behind jobs, wages, the NHS and so on.  That is why, these areas continued over the years to vote Labour, who the workers in these areas saw as being the party committed to policies they needed on those issues.  Workers in Stoke, and similar areas did not suddenly become hostile to the EU, or concerned about immigration only last June!  All of those who live in these areas, and talk to ordinary workers as a matter of our daily lives, know that these sentiments have been there for decades.  Yet, none of those concerns stopped workers in those areas, year after year voting labour, and in some cases being active members of the Labour Party itself.  Nor will that situation have changed on June 24th 2015 either.

Whatever Labour Leave voters might feel, their overriding concern for the issues of jobs, wages, the NHS and so on, means that they should still vote Labour, because they must know that the Tories are the enemies of workers on all these issues.  It is the Tories who want and where they can, have cut workers wages.  It is the Tories that are decimating the NHS just as they did under Thatcher and Major in the 1980's and 90's.  It is the Tories who want to use Brexit so as to have a bonfire of workers rights and turn Britain into a 21st century equivalent of Batista's Cuba, with low wage, low status jobs for the the majority, and low taxes and vast speculative wealth for a small minority.  

Moreover, Nuttall's Nutters in UKIP are even worse.  Nuttall himself is a former hard-right, Thatcherite Tory, who stood in elections under that banner in the past, and openly advocated privatising the NHS.  However, workers in Stoke feel about the EU or immigration, which the Tories and UKIP and the gutter press over decades have led them to believe are the causes of their problems, in order to distract them from the real cause in the inadequacies of capitalism, and the austerity policies carried out by conservative politicians, they should vote Labour, because only Labour comes close to offering them the kind of policies required for dealing with their main concerns over jobs, wages, the NHS.

The Tories and UKIP offer the opposite kinds of policies on all those issues.  They offer only further attacks on workers jobs, conditions, wages, the NHS and public services.  As far as the Liberals are concerned, its tempting to ask, "Are the still here?"  We all saw where the priorities of Liberal politicians lie in 2010.  The whiff of ministerial leather caused them to jump into bed with Cameron's Tories, and to stand shoulder to shoulder with them in carrying through their right-wing policies of austerity, supporting things such as the Bedroom Tax.  Had they won more than their paltry 8 seats at the 2015 General Election, they would have had no qualms about getting back into bed with the Tories.

Moreover, a look at the actual practice of parties like the Liberals and the Greens, in Local Government, shows a similar pattern, whereby they talk left, but act right, alongside the Tories to implement policies of austerity etc.

On the other hand, a Remain Labour voter in Stoke might be revulsed at the haste with which Corbyn and the Labour Party have themselves jumped into bed with Theresa May to push through Brexit.  They might think that, in response they will register their vote by voting for the Liberals or Greens, who have maintained a principled position of opposing Brexit.  Again they would be wrong.  The Liberals are partly responsible for this mess, because they facilitated Cameron's government, and his hubris in calling the referendum.  The Liberals long advocated such a referendum, yet it was clear that any such referendum undertaken under a Tory government, would not be an adequate test of public opinion on the matter.  The referendum descended into nothing but a Reality TV show, of coverage of the personal bickering of Tory politicians, with everyone else effectively blacked out along with any other perspective other than inside or outside the existing capitalist framework of the EU.  There was no discussion of the possibility of reforming the EU in the interests of EU workers, for example, as opposed to introducing further reforms, such as those proposed by Cameron which would have further undermined workers rights.

The Liberals had their chance and blew it, along with the rest of the Blair-right, Third Way political centre, whose conservative policies over the last thirty years blew up speculative asset price bubbles, which undermined real productive investment, caused the financial crisis of 2008, and threatens an even bigger financial crisis any minute.  The political death of that political centre, be it the Liberals, Blair-rights, Pasok, Clinton, the PSOE, Hollande etc. is no accident.  It created its own gallows, and there is no future for workers in trying to resuscitate that corpse, however much the media keep trying to forge a new Frankenstein's Monster out of the bits of separate corpses, the latest example of which was the attempt on Newsnight by Evan Davies to invite Tory Ed Vaizey and Progress Member Alison McGovern to join together, having had former SDP member Polly Toynbee sing the praises of the French Blair-right candidate Emmanuel Macron.

Even just practically, nationally, neither the Liberals nor the Greens could form a realistic opposition.  If the LIberals even trebled their number of MP's, they would have a measly 27, whilst Caroline Lucas would have her solitary confinement broken only by the addition of an additional two Green MP's.  The only real effect, would be to split the anti-Tory vote, as happened in 2010, and thereby help the Tories back into government.

All of those arguments apply equally to the by-election in Copeland, but there is an additional factor there, which is the issue of nuclear power.  Everyone knows that Jeremy Corbyn opposes nuclear power.  However, Jeremy Corbyn is not the candidate standing in Copeland.  Moreover, the Labour Party is a democratic not a dictatorial party.  Jeremy Corbyn as leader has an important voice, but still only one voice.  The policy of the Labour Party is not to oppose nuclear power, as it is for the Greens and Liberals.

My personal view, as it has been for forty years, is that socialists should not cut off the potential of a power source that could be the most important one we have for the energy demands of our future. The question should not be whether we are in favour of nuclear power or against it, but as with any question of technology, how it is used, for what purposes, and under whose control.  No one opposes the use of nuclear material in medicine, for example, where it is used for X-Rays, C-T Scans, as well as for radiation treatment of cancers.

Our first concern with the nuclear industry should be that it is not used for purposes that damage workers interests, by threatening their lives, health and communities.  We have to be concerned for the workers who live in the communities surrounding such plants, as well as for all those generations of workers to come.  If only such concern had been shown for all of those workers, communities and families who were allowed to work for decades with deadly asbestos, that continues to blight people's lives decades later.  Everyone can be wise long after the event, and bemoan the fact that they were too concerned about short term economic considerations to have heeded the warnings that were given to them.

Labour's policy should be to demand that nuclear plants, and the nuclear industry in general is placed under workers control, with day to day workers supervision undertaken by committees of specialists drawn from the workers' movement, and local communities.  Activity should only be undertaken where it can guarantee very high levels of safety and security for workers and local communities, and just as the government provides huge subsidies to the private nuclear power companies, they should provide sufficient subsidies to ensure that workers can run such plants to these high levels of safety and security.

Moreover, we should demand as a priority, that the government provides large scale funding along with other EU governments for intensive research and development of nuclear technology so as to improve safety and security, and particularly, for the rapid development of nuclear fusion technology, which can provide limitless supplies, of safe and cheap nuclear power into the future.

But, all of that requires that we remove the Tories and their UKIP and Liberal allies, and their faith in capitalism and the free market.  It requires that we build the Labour party, and the Labour Movement, so as to be able to take on these challenges of the future.

Theories of Surplus Value, Part I, Chapter 3 - Part 42

Suppose the flax grower produces 300 kg of flax. Its value comprises 1 hour/£1 value of seed, and £2 value of labour added. Of the output, 100 kg is set aside just for the reproduction of the seed, so that only the remaining 200 kg are actually sold to the spinner. In that case, although the value of output is equal to £3, only £2 actually goes into circulation, and comprises a part of the constant capital of the spinner. When the spinner then uses this flax in the production of the yarn, only this £2 of value is incorporated in the value of their output, and when the yarn is sold to the weaver, the weaver only has to give them £2 of linen in exchange for it. (The weaver, of course, gives an additional quantity of linen equal to the value added to the constant capital by the spinner's labour).

“It is clear in the first place that the producers of the elements of the linen, of the constant capital of the linen, could not consume their own product, since these products are produced for production and do not enter into immediate consumption. They must therefore spend their wages and profits on linen—on the product which finally enters into individual consumption. What they do not consume in linen, they must consume in some other consumable product exchanged for linen. As much (in value) linen is therefore consumed by others as they consume in other consumable products instead of linen, It is the same as if they had themselves consumed it in linen, since as much as they consume in another product is consumed in linen by the producers of other products.” (p 128)

Looking at how the linen is then allocated Marx summarises the situation thus.

The linen has a value of £36 made up £12 newly added labour, £24 loom and yarn. The machine maker and yarn producer receive eight metres of linen with a value of £24. Marx assumes that the machine maker and yarn producer have added a third of the value by their added labour. That is the £24 value of machines and yarn £8, is the value of added labour, and £16 is the value of wood, iron and flax that comprise the constant capital of the machine maker and yarn producer.

In terms of linen, eight metres were paid out by the weaver, and of these 2.66 metres make up the consumption of the machine maker and yarn producer, leaving 5.33 metres left over, and which are the equivalent of the value of the constant capital of the machine maker and yarn producer, i.e. the equivalent of £16 or 16 hours of value.

If we take the flax grower then, Marx says, (and assuming no wear and tear of his fixed capital) all of the linen they receive from the yarn producer can go to consumption, because they replace their constant capital – the flax seed – out of their own output, and so do not have to buy it with linen.

Marx makes an error here. He previously said that the value of the constant capital of the machine maker and yarn producer combined was equal to 5.33 metres of linen, or £16. He begins by then setting the value of the constant capital of the yarn producer as equal to this 5.33 metres. Afterwards, he corrects it, and assumes that the yarn producers constant capital only has a value equal to four metres of linen.

We then have a situation where the constant capital of the weaver is equal to eight metres of linen (£24) divided into six metres of yarn, and two metres loom. For the spinner, Marx assumes that the value of their output comprises the four metres of linen (constant capital) and two metres of linen (new value added by labour).

The machine maker's output in linen equivalent comprises 1.33 metres of linen (constant capital) and 0.66 metres of linen (new value added by labour).

Of the four metres of linen that are the equivalent of the constant capital of the spinner, these are exchanged with the flax grower and machine maker. Marx assumes that three metres goes to the flax grower and one metre to the machine maker.

“A considerable part of the constant capital in the flax, used in its production, has not however to be replaced; for the flax-grower has already returned it to the land in the form of seed, manure, fodder, cattle, etc. Therefore in the part of his product that he sells, only the wear and tear of his instruments of labour, etc., has to be included as constant capital. Here we must rate the labour added at two-thirds at least and the constant capital to be replaced at one-third at the most.” (p 130) 

The total value of output of the flax grower is then equal to three metres of linen. Of this, two metres goes as revenue, and is equal to the new value added, whilst one metre is equal to the value of constant capital. This leaves a number of things still not accounted for. There is the equivalent of one metre of linen, which is equal to the flax grower's constant capital, 1.33 metres equal to the constant capital for the loom, and one metre, which is equal to the value of the spinning machine.

The spinning machine has a value equal to one metre of linen. It is comprised of 0.66 metres for constant capital, and 0.33 metres for added labour.

There is also the one metre of linen equivalent of the flax grower's machinery, which is divided 0.66 metres constant capital, and 0.33 metres new value added.