Game of the name

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The Independent Online
All this hand-wringing and soul-searching over our poor Olympics performance is totally misguided. The true cause of our failures lies in team selection: there are simply too many Nicks and Johns in the team and not enough Davids or Michaels. For comparison, look at the following table with a breakdown of MPs' names in the principal parties:

Name Cons Lab Lib-Dem

David 28 8 3

John 25 24 0

Michael 24 8 0

Peter 16 7 0

Nicholas 9 2 1

Andrew 7 5 0

Timothy 9 0 0

Patrick 6 0 0

Brian/Bryan 1 5 0

Gordon 0 4 0

Dennis 0 3 0

Kevin 0 3 0

The table reflects the general prevalence of the name "John", which also shows no preference between the two main parties (though oddly most of the "Rt Hon Sir Johns" are Tory). Michael and Nicholas are clearly aligned with the Conservatives, and while David is more Con than Lab, the three Lib-Dem Davids (from a total of 20) represent a highly significant David quota in a curiously Johnless party. The distribution of the Timothys is statistically the most significant result, however. The Tories appear to have captured the Tim vote, though Labour have a stranglehold over Kevin, Dennis and Gordon. In other professions, the second table tells a different story:

Name Cri Soc pounds pounds pounds Luv Oly

John 2.2 3.0 6.9 4.3 3.9

David 3.7 5.3 4.9 4.8 3.9

Michael 3.5 2.5 3.7 3.8 0.6

Peter 1.1 1.6 4.9 3.5 2.8

Andrew 3.2 2.5 0.7 1.8 2.8

Timothy 1.9 0.5 0.7 1.0 1.1

Kevin 1.3 1.8 0.4 0.7 1.1

Wayne 0.6 0.2 0.0 0.4 0.0

Darren 1.9 0.9 0.2 0.1 1.7

Jason 1.9 1.6 0.0 0.2 0.6

The figures represent the percentages of each name at the top of five professions: County Cricket (Cri), Premier League Soccer (Soc), 500 wealthiest Britons (pounds pounds pounds ), Actors (Luv) and the British Olympic team (Oly). As may be seen, the Davids continue to outperform the Johns at everything except making money. Kevin, Wayne, Darren and Jason fare better at sport than politics, though surprisingly no better at soccer than cricket. Cricketers generally retain the longer form. Andrews (who almost invariable truncate to Andy on the football pitch) are hopeless financially and underperform on the stage, where they have been overtaken by Simon, Mark and Paul. Andrews are, however, more likely than any other name to edit national broadsheet newspapers.

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