Inside the SNP bubble this week the focus has been on the party itself yet again but in the world beyond the conference hall patience with Scotland’s ruling party is wearing thin.
There have been many demands for an end to the climate of intimidation that pervades Scottish politics under the Nationalists – but they don’t usually come from within the party.
When John Swinney first proposed his changes to stamp duty, home owners at the higher end of the market knew they were about to be clobbered.
Nicola Sturgeon will have been pleased, on the whole, with the headlines that greeted her decision to ban the smacking of children in Scotland. While her government presides over a crisis in primary health care and plummeting education standards, the debate about physical punishment provides a handy distraction.
With Brexit negotiations on a knife edge it seems irrelevant to bring up the subject of Scottish independence – again. But the link between leaving Europe and leaving the UK is made ad nauseam by the nationalists, so link them we must.
Europe, and Britain’s place in it, might have propelled Theresa May to the top job in British politics but it has also given her a permanent headache since she entered Number 10. This week the pain must have intensified somewhat.
Even before Theresa May’s announcement of a general election in June, Scotland had been on something of a war footing, with local elections on May 4.
This week marks the third anniversary of the Scottish independence referendum and, on the surface at least, the country still bears the scars of that divisive campaign.
It’s hard to decide what is more worrying in Professor Lindsay Paterson’s critique of the Scottish Government’s education policy.
One of the SNP’s MPs admitted recently that she had to hold her nose while toeing the party line and voting to remain in the EU in June.