RFH Episode 53: Henryk Grossmann’s Breakdown Model


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Brendan interviews Andrew about his recent article,“Henryk Grossmann’s Breakdown Model: On the Real Cause of the Fictitious Breakdown Tendency.” Andrew argues that Grossmann’s model and associated theory continue to be influential among fatalists. The co-hosts discuss the political dangers of a fatalist outlook. Much of the interview focuses on flaws in the breakdown model that Andrew says are fatal and irreparable. First, the real cause of breakdown––in the model––is that supply of physical output falls short of productive demand in physical terms, which is the opposite of what occurs in actual economic downturns. Second, the model’s assumption that circulating constant capital permanently grows faster than new value contradicts Marx’s value theory. When we jettison the assumption and employ Marx’s theory, the breakdown tendency vanishes. Current-events segment: “Zuck you!” Brendan and Andrew discuss Frances Haugen’s bombshell incrimination of Facebook.

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