Is skilled labor an exploited class?

We know that Marx asserted a clear and fundamental proposition in his Capital I, contending that labor will not be employed by capital unless it can generate more value than it is compensated with. From here arises a major political conclusion about exploitation of labor by capital. But let us not forget, Marx was imposing assumptions on his model and his proposition holds true within the abstract framework under those premises. The most important one, that there is perfect competition and a "free market", as perceived and defined by original liberal political economists (i.e. a market free from all forms of rent). In reality, though, rentier classes are the ones dominating and controlling markets. One of those rentier classes, I venture to say, is the skilled workers. Skills will inevitably beget monopolistic powers to their possessors, unless education could be democratized, at least to the extent that supply of all skills approaches to its demand. Considering this tendency, it is no longer a surprise to see why the working class does not behave as a united class with uniform interests and political aspirations, especially in developed countries with high levels of technological progress. I know that Marx was aware of these implications, but since most Marxists never go beyond his very first volume of Capital, his profound analysis is often reduced to an unrealistic view of capitalist society, therefore undermining his materialist method and substituting it with an idealistic one. What do you think about the implications of monopoly and rent in the Marxian view of capitalist society, particularly that of skilled labor and the way it is being even further monopolized by erecting barriers to entry such as extortionate tuition fees and abolishing public education?

Showing 1 reaction

How would you tag this suggestion?
Please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account.
  • Seyedsepehr Samiei
    published this page in Ask Prof. Wolff 2017-08-08 22:23:27 -0400