Some methodological issues in the determination of the distributive share of labor
The title of this paper indicates the area in which we are investigating guides to policy. The "regularities" or "hypotheses" we are seeking to lay the groundwork for are those which explain how the proportion of the national income, which the class of workers receives tends to vary, as the money wage rate varies. Since many dispute the theoretical and practical answers found by others on this question, it seems desirable to pay special attention to methodology. Hence, we shall be more concerned with the bases of the existing theoretical structure than with finding applicable answers. To the extent we succeed in stating how the proportion of the national income which goes to laborers tends to vary as wage rates change, we should succeed in stating how this proportion may be changed. We are not concerned with determining the rules by which the real wage is determined; we are explicitly interested in the variation in the proportion of the national income accruing to workers due to wage changes. The policies we seek to evaluate are those dealing with dividing up the national income in a different percentage distribution than heretofore.