That is the spectre raised by the Highlands and Islands Conservative MSP Jamie McGrigor, who dared to follow a presentation on rural policy by the European Commission's director general of agriculture, plus various homegrown bigwigs, with some challenging questions. McGrigor wanted to know why European money is coming down from the hills, but not going up.
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For all the European Union subsidies and rural development programmes, he suggested, stock numbers in the Highlands and Islands are continuing to drop and "hill farming in general is struggling to remain part of the Scottish agricultural scene".
McGrigor also pointed out that former forestry villages that housed families connected with the Forestry Commission are no longer occupied by these workers. He said: "While local Scottish food and drink are successful and important, the primary sectors of farming, forestry and fisheries were resources which employed people in the Highlands and must do so again if we are to stop the depopulation."
A shout out to the highly regarded Leith-based video production company Muckle Hen, the all-female team behind the corporate videos of some of Scotland's best-known companies and institutions.
In a new project designed to mark next year's First World War commemorations, the Hens will be making a film of a project for Disability History Scotland, looking at the seismic impact of the 1914-18 war on perceptions of disability in society.
The £60,000 Heritage Lottery Fund project, called "All Together Now?", will be made by disabled volunteers, and will result in a short film focusing on the thousands of people injured in the 1914-18 conflict and the impact on Scottish society. It is designed to be used in schools and community centres.
The firm's Shona Donaldson said: "It's a wonderful project and Muckle Hen are so proud to be part of it."