A Departmental Departure

This past week has seen me partake in a Model UN styled forum in the form of something called the Model IBSA (India, Brazil, South Africa) youth plenary something-or-other. To add insult to injury, I was a chairperson, which meant no acidic judgment nor any manner of partisan contributions. Purely sober and productive contributions towards working group agenda priorities, free education for all, unicorns on every street corner, and rainbows, world peace and such for all citizens of the world to enjoy. Heh…
Seriously though, the MIBSA was a new experience for yours truly at any rate. Organised primarily by IR postgrads in our department – something which we never did during honours, I suspect due to excessive workloads in tutoring and marking and other admin bullshit – and designed towards creating some sort of agenda of meaningful or pertinent points for the IBSA youth summit next year.

It was rather interesting doing something slightly debate-related, yet not at all similar. I suspect this format of argumentation to be far less confrontational, but likewise a lot less thought-provoking. MIBSA was a lot more akin to my diplomacy and negotiations simulation in 2006, where we the concerned nations involved attempted to discuss Iran’s controversial nuclear programme. We were Iran and I’d managed to get the USA to export it’s arms and whatnot to Iran in exchange for a pause in Uranium enrichment, thereby effectively breaking the entire thing away from the confines of reality and moving it towards the realm of absurd meta-existential retardation, but MIBSA was far more grounded in sober appreciations of co-operation initiatives. While I maintain that providing education for ALL children to the 9th grade to be supremely naive and ambitious, some interesting points were raised and at the very least the entire exercise got IR students thinking a little bit about issues. I don’t think I can quite overestimate how deficient this entire world is in terms of THINKING about issues, rather than ‘feeling’ about it. I have this theory that emotions get in the way of at least 75% of all decent ideology, and should thus be done away with. But then, I’m a horrid cynic so what do I know, eh :p

The three day event culminated in a formal dinner thing, which in turn culminated in a strangely-unique scenario in which I witnessed many of my fellow students, staff members and suchlike jamming hard to what another IR postgrad referred to as “Afro-house”. It was… different, and certainly a new experience to me. I’m of course far more accustomed to moshing my ass off to Deftones, Slipknot, In flames and such, or even -in polite company- shuffling feet to generic hiphoprnbhousendeofndeofntsntsladygaga stuff which seems to catch everyone’s attention all of five minutes before the next generic tween hit crashes into our audiosphere. Still, it proved interesting and unique, and I’m glad for the experience. Perhaps when the IBSA Defense Initiative should come to light I’ll be invited as a delegate. Then again, perhaps only in an alternate reality…

Song of the day: Nirvana – Heart-Shaped Box

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