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The Politics Of Politics

| Learning | March 19, 2015

(In politics class our tutor has us play a game. Everyone gets given £100 in paper money and each round starts with some sum of money in the middle of the table up for grabs. Players can then bid for that with their own money. The biggest bid wins. The rules allow for players to form partnerships and pacts to try and out bid each other there are also no rules against backstabbing. In order to stop any one player amassing too much power the tutor also bids on the pot, and he also has more money than anyone so he can force people to stop bidding. Unfortunately I decide to totally derail the game and build my own empire. After making a party of half the class and winning the first bid I convince my team to let me hold onto all the money since ‘it would be a real pain to count it all out.’ At this point I have effectively taken control of the whole game without anyone realizing. I proceed to not bid at all the next round and instead leverage my wealth into tempting anyone who has not joined a party or even smaller parties into joining my party. They simply add their money to my pile so that ‘it’s easier to bid.’ Now at this stage the only opposition I face is another small party that has about 10% of all the money in play. I have the other 90%.)

Me: “Ok, I think our party needs to change its policy a little here. We can’t have it like this… Everyone on my side versus a small party.”

(At this there are some nods of agreement in the room people thinking I might offer to share the money out to make it more even.)

Me: “As such I am dissolving the party. I think we were very successful and I wish everyone the best of luck.”

Classmate #1: “Well that’s all well and good but how do we split the money up?”

Me: “Erm… what money?”

Classmate #1: “That big pile of our money you have there.”

Me: “Nope, don’t see it. I only see a pile of my money.”

(At this point it starts to dawn on everyone that I have convinced them all to hand over their money and now no longer need them.)

Me: “With my first act as emperor I declare that all assets belong to me. [Other Party], you know you can’t ever out bid me so you had best accept that I effectively own you now as well.”

Tutor: “Okay, so whilst we all bow down to [My Name], does anyone have an idea of how we can fix this?”

Me: “If we continue to play by the rules the only option open to you is to try and outbid me and since you have infinite funds I will lose. So instead I want to use my assets to buy a trip to a private island in a non-extradition territory and retire and live out the rest of my days with my fortune.”

Tutor: “Okay, let’s start the game again… [My Name], you can’t play anymore since you’re on an island.”

(Everyone, even the tutor, thought it was hilarious how I had managed to derail the game to such an extent and all within 15 minutes. I was also never allowed to play again.)

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