Saturday, 21 August 2010

Let's play Top Trumps

Top Trumps is a series of decks of cards which all have the same theme - you compare the attributes of two of the cards and the person holding the card with the best attribute wins. So, for example, if you and I were playing with a deck of F1 cars, I might pitch speed as the attribute and whichever of us had the fastest car on our card would win the hand. A fun wee game which lots of us enjoyed as children and which covers subjects as diverse as baby animals, football players, Harry Potter, Horrible Histories and Politicos. Inexplicably, they've never done Holyrood and the politicians in Scotland's Parliament so I find myself shouldering that burden.

Let's start with the candidates for First Minister in next May's election:

Alex Salmond:
First Minister of Scotland
Leader of the Scottish National Party

Election history –
Won Banff & Buchan Westminster seat1987, re-elected in 1992, 1997, 2001, 2005 – retired undefeated
Won Banff & Buchan Scottish Parliament seat 1999 – retired undefeated
Won Gordon Scottish Parliament seat 2007

Current majority – 2,062

Age - 55

Employment immediately before election – Oil Economist and Bank Economist, Royal Bank of Scotland

Ian Gray
Opposition leader
Leader of the Labour Group of MSPs in the Scottish Parliament

Election history –
Won Pentlands 1999
Lost Pentlands 2003
Won East Lothian 2007

Current Majority – 2,448

Age - 53

Employment immediately before election – SPAD to Alistair Darling

Annabel Goldie
Opposition leader
Leader of the Scottish Conservatives

Election history –
List Member for the West of Scotland Region 1999, re-elected 2003 and 2007

Current majority – none

Age - 60

Employment immediately before election – solicitor

Tavish Scott
Opposition leader
Leader of the Scottish Liberal Democrats

Election history –
Won Shetland 1999, re-elected 2003 and 2007

Current majority – 4, 909

Age - 44

Employment before election – councillor and farmer

Patrick Harvie
Opposition leader
Leader of the Scottish Green Party (co-convenor with Eleanor Scott)

Election history -
List Member for the Glasgow Region 2003, re-elected 2007

Current majority – none

Age - 37

Employment immediately before election – youth worker and development worker for PHACE Scotland

Other things
Then, of course, there's debating and rhetorical skills. Out of 10 points you've surely got to give Salmond at least 8 and possibly 9, Goldie probably 7 maybe 6, Harvie has to be 5 or 6, Scott about the same, and Gray 2 maybe 3.

Stature (in terms of befitting the office) - Salmond 7, Goldie 5, Harvie 3, Scott and Gray down about 2.

Capacity to develop policy (relies on party to a great extent and how much freedom there is to work) - Salmond 10, Harvie 8 maybe 9, Goldie 3, and Scott and Gray 0.

Recognisability wouldn't be a fair category, Salmond is the only one who would figure.

Courage to take decisions - Salmond 10, Harvie 10, Goldie 4, Scott 2, Gray 2

I can't think of any other categories to add at the moment, but feel free to suggest some. It doesn't look like a very even contest just now, does it? That might change when I get the chance to look at the other cabinet positions, right enough...

Mind how you go!


cynicalHighlander said...

Ability to think on ones feet.

Chris said...

Don't stop there!

Baillie v Sturgeon?
Baker v MacAskill?
Kerr v Swinney?

Anonymous said...

I'd say Goldie is fairly recognisable.