It's not many years since a Scottish accent was regarded as somehow more trustworthy than a twanging Estuary English voice, weasly whining Welsh or a wacky and unreliable Irish brogue. Other regional accents such as Vernon Kaye Bolton or Paul Gascoigne Geordie speak for themselves... they are quite entertaining to listen to but you wouldn't trust them to look after your car insurance.
It used to be conventional wisdom that if you were setting up a telephone call centre, the ideal gold standard would be Edinburgh. Those dulcit, attractive Scottish tones would seduce the most irate customer and leave everyone feeling they were dealing with a sound and caring organization.
Earnest and honest Scots who helped build up this impression of their race were all around, whether it was Jackie Stewart, Barbara Dickson, Sean Connery or Robert Carlisle. In politics the Scots abounded with such highly regarded conviction politicians as John Smith and the only senior Labour Minister to resign over the Iraq War, the much missed Robin Cook.
Sadly, the lingua franca of Scottish solidity has been devalued in the last three years faster than the Zimbabwe dollar. A succession of high profile Scots have done to our economy what John Major was doing to Edwina Currie and the currency is as muddied as the Clyde.
Gordon Brown - promised a caring modern Socialist State but ended up merely running after Murdoch headlines like a frightened chicken.
Alistair Darling - "Darling I shrunk the economy". London Born but Scots by upbringing.
Sir Fred Goodwin - Born in Paisley but most people consider him to have no parents. Once failed in the Highland Games Caber section as he was such a useless tosser.
Alex Salmond - "The Toast of Tripoli" after helping release mass murderer Al-Megrahi for a hero's welcome back home.
One suspects he assumed it was "Al McGrahey" and therefore automatically deserving favour and subsidy.
Sorry Scotland, you've blown it.
(If I haven't managed to upset you in this posting, please accept my apologies. As a 50% Scot myself I'm not half bothered).