Intellectual Self Defence

Brains are delicate things…

Profit versus Productivity

Productivity is the measure of surplus produced divided by the number of work hours spent. If productivity goes up (because of management going on a karoshi war path, for example, or new equipment), three different things can happen.
1) The workers can get all of that productivity increase in higher wages.
2) The bosses can get it; their profit goes up.
3) Or some mix of these two.
It is mystifying to talk just about ‘productivity increases’ without asking who is going to benefit from them. “Increased profitability” doesn’t have the same neutral sound to it, so New Labour pod people prefer ‘productivity.’ That is sort of like motherhood- who could possibly be against it?

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