Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Commentary on the "Bookie" predictions

The so-called "bookie odds" figures should be viewed sceptically. I have no idea why bookies would have predictions to 1 decimal place. In fact, I seriously doubt if these practical mathematicians would see a practical need for such accuracy.

So while I will refer to these figures as "bookie odds" or "bookie predictions" in no way am I asserting that these are actually predictions of bookies.

Also, if these were empirical data - that is, people are betting on which candidate or party would win in a given GRC/SMC, say, Ang Mo Kio, and the results were: PAP-79.4% , RP-20.6%. So 80% of bettors were wagering that PAP would win, while only 20% (or 20.6%) were betting that RP would win - then all these percentages reflect is the aggregated wishes or opinions of bettors, and not the choices of voters.

There are also extreme results.
Overall, the bookies odds give PAP quite a boost in percentage, with 5 GRCs with over 70% of votes to PAP.
PAP's best showing in 2011 was just under 70% for AMK GRC, with PM Lee fronting that team. This prediction is for them to take 79% or a 10 percentage point increase over 2011. There is no reason for this. Or for the other 4 GRCs: Pasir-Ris Punggol, Tampines, Chua Chu Kang, and Marsiling-Yew Tee.

What is common for 3 of the 5 (or even all 5) GRCs is that the opposition are weak teams.

RP in AMK, SDA in Pasir Ris-Punggol, and PPP in Chua Chu Kang are all weak teams. Voters may be punishing NSP in Tampines for their "betrayal" of "opposition unity". And SDP still needs to prove their credibility in Marsiling-Yew Tee.

But still, it is unlikely for the PAP to break 70% at this stage of our political development, and the general sentiment does not reflect such a boost to PAP. Or is the RP's suicide squad (Ravi, and Roy) in Ang Mo Kio really that hopeless. Well I think so, but they seem quite popular.

Conversely, WP wins of 65%+ in Hougang and Punggol East SMCs also seem overly optimistic. Even the 60%+ in Aljunied seems a little on the high side.

For SPP's Lina Chiam to re-take Potong Pasir also seems like more like fantasy than reality. BUT... maybe voters really miss the old slower pace of life in sleepy Potong Pasir?

Yes, PAP won by only 114 votes in 2011 or less than 1%. Now SPP is projected to win by 9%? That's a lot of swing for a fading party.We will know on 12 Sept.

Han Hui Hui is expected to poll devastatingly low in Radin Mas. Roy and the RP team in Ang Mo Kio too. If they both do very badly will this be the end of their crusade to "Return our CPF"?

I doubt it. Fanatics: Can't change the subject. Won't talk about anything else.
Conspiracy Theorists: There is always a bigger conspiracy.

WP predicted wins in Fengshan and East Coast are modest wins that are quite believable, Nothing controversial there.

PAP holding Marine Parade rather comfortably is probably questionable, but not incredible.

But for PAP to lose SengKang West without any warning or indications is inexplicable.

Conversely I expect PAP to hold MacPherson, but at 59% it is quite an achievement. a win is possible, but I do not expect such a wide margin.

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