Michael Forsyth is still the number one hate figure for Labour in Scotland, as last weekend's party conference in Edinburgh underlined. Even the normally reliable Shadow Scottish Secretary could not contain his wrath.
"Michael Forsyth is a piss - " George Robertson thundered. Robertson quickly stopped to change feet but delegates had collapsed in laughter by the time he blurted out "pest". Everyone was content with his first description.
Forsyth's chum in the education and industry department also came under jocular fire from Phil D'Arcy, Aberdeen North CLP and retired depute director of education in Grampian. "Opt-out Raymond", as D'Arcy labelled Raymond Robertson during what passed for the education debate, was allegedly enjoying a refreshment with his boss and recalling what a great year it had been.
"You know Michael, here I am responsible for Scottish education. I cannot believe it."
"To tell you the truth, neither can I," replied Michael.