Scotland’s renowned universities have had to jealousy guard their independence under the SNP, which though surely proud of such national institutions does not quite get their relatively autonomous – in educational terms – status.
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.
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.
The most fevered speculation at the Conservative conference was whether Theresa May would sack Boris Johnson, her loose cannon of a foreign minister.
On the evidence of his political career to date, Scottish Labour leadership contender Anas Sarwar is probably not the saviour his party is seeking.
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.
When Lib Dem leader Willie Rennie suggested Scotland’s chaotic police force should look south of the border to draft in help, it sounded like a good idea.
It’s hard to decide what is more worrying in Professor Lindsay Paterson’s critique of the Scottish Government’s education policy.
If an English inquisitor had suggested to Nicola Sturgeon her party’s name had negative and ugly connotations, I wonder how she would have reacted. Based on past form, she perhaps would have blamed London, or possibly Westminster, for the way the word nationalism is perceived.