Saturday, 28 April 2012

Valen’s Handy-Dandy Local Election Rating Scale(TM) - Grays Riverside Local Election Running Commentary part 4

Not only has the race for the Grays Riverside Ward seat on Thurrock Council hotted up, it has produced, as a sidebar, my new trademarked election rating scale, VHDLERS.  The acronym may not be the best but it does mean I have less to type.  I have rated the first three of the five candidates based on the VHDLERS elements and the results are below with the explanation of the scoring system.
The UKIP candidate left some literature in my letterbox yesterday so I have only had the chance to look at it with a cursory glance and the Liberal Democrat candidate has not even bothered to send any literature at all.  For these reasons, the UKIP and Liberal Democrat candidates are to be covered in the next chapter of this running commentary.
The Rating Elements And How They Are Scored
There are ten elements upon which a candidate is being scored with an eleventh ‘bonus’ element that a candidate may earn extra points.  Rather than go into a deep discussion of the elements, I will give you a bullet pointed list with the most salient details.
·         Eagerness
o   This is a measure of how quickly the candidate made contact on a sliding scale of 0 (I only put my name down for a laugh) to 5 (extremely eager/first one to enter the race)
·         Engagement
o   This is a measure of the length of time spent explaining why they should be elected:
§  5 = protracted face-to-face contact
§  4 = long face-to-face contact
§  3 = reasonable length face-to-face contact
§  2 = short face-to-face contact
§  1 = literature posted through letterbox only
§  0 = no show
·         Local focussed?
o   This is a measure of how focussed the engagement was on local issues on a sliding scale of 0 (national focus only) to 3 (very locally focussed)
·         Information
o   This is a measure of how detailed the information given was in order for an informed decision could be made on a sliding scale of 0 (details? what do you mean?) to 3 (extremely detailed)
·         Blame Game
o   This is a measure of how much blame a candidate assigns to the other parties on a sliding scale from 0 (it’s all their fault!) to 3 (I’m not going to assign blame)
·         Passion
o   This is a measure of how passionately the candidate sold themselves through their use of language and powers of persuasion on a sliding scale of 0 (could not give a toss) to 3 (extremely passionate)
·         Willingness To Work Together
o   This is a measure of a candidate’s willingness to forget partisan differences in order to work together in the common good on a sliding scale of 0 (work with them? You are kidding! / N/A) to 3 (extremely willing)
·         Presentation
o   This is a measure of how well presented the candidate’s case for being elected was on a sliding scale of 0 (non-existent) to 5 (excellent).
o   This measure is split into separate scores for face-to-face contact and literature.  If more than on leaflet was left, each leaflet was given a score with an average score derived from the combined total divided by the number of leaflets.
·         Fear mongering
o   This is a measure of how much fear was produced or the victimisation of certain groups in society (except political groups) on a sliding scale of 0 (extreme) to 3 (none)
·         Exactly how will you ensure your pledges will be enacted?
o   This is a measure of how clearly the candidate shows how the pledges they make will be achieved on a sliding scale from 0 (lack of clear proposals) to 3 (extremely clear proposals)
·         Extra points are awarded for the use of certain key words or phrases.  I’m not, however, going to tell you what they are in case any candidates are reading this and want to have another go.
The Candidates and Where They Stand
Below is a table of the scores each candidate received.  I have not, however, identified the names of the candidates but simply used their party affiliation as there really is no reason to pour scorn on the candidates until they are elected.

Party à
Ratings â
(3 leaflets left)
(1 leaflet left)
(2 leaflets left)
Local focussed?
3/2/(2) [2.5]
2/1/(3) [1.5]
Blame Game
3/0 [1.5]
2/1/(2) [1.5]
Willingness To Work Together
0/0/(1) [0]
3/2/(3) [2.5]
Fear mongering
0/0/(1) [0]
Exactly how will you ensure your pledges will be enacted?
0/0/(1) [0]
Bonus Points

Total Score

Please note: Examples using the format above for the numbers in brackets are listed below so you can see why the score was assigned.
·         (2) – the score for a leaflet that is about the party and not the candidate and was, therefore, removed from the candidate’s score.
·         [2.5] – the score in square brackets is based on the average score if more than one leaflet was left.
In a way, it was a shame that the Conservative candidate left his party’s manifesto as that scuppered his score but I could not in all good conscience allow the points earned by the party manifesto as it was not ‘selling’ him but the party.
I shall be waiting for the Liberal Democrat candidate with baited breath this weekend and will post the scores for the UKIP candidate on Monday.
Until next time…

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