Of course, the First Minister has kept a public distance from the wrangle between Trump and the Aberdeenshire planning authorities, but reports have suggested that he was furious over the Council's decision to reject the American magnate's plans. Certainly, the move to 'call in' the planning application for consideration at senior government level is not the sort of assistance the rest of us can expect when our plans for modest conservatory extensions are turfed out by local planning officials.And this really gets at the main concern many clearly have:
There are some whose opposition to Trump is probably based on nothing more than a visceral antipathy to the larger-and-louder-than-life figure he presents, the mouthy yank who would sooner push down any door than knock and politely wait his turn.
Those who witnessed his toe-curling contribution to the 2004 Ryder Cup's opening ceremony might suggest he should immediately have been served with a lifetime ban from any further involvement in golf. Yet if Trump has been guilty of hyperbole at times, it is still unquestionably true that the links of Balmedie offer a canvas on which a great course could indeed be painted.
Yet golf is a relatively small component of a development which, if implemented in full, would almost inevitably be known as Trumpton. In full, the proposal under consideration is for two courses, a training academy, a five-star hotel, 450 holiday homes and around 1,000 houses. Trump's most remarkable achievement has been to set an agenda in which everyone seems to be discussing golf courses, when even his own website suggests a construction project that could comfortably be seen from outer space.
The fact of the matter is that Trump has come up with a plan that pays no heed whatsoever to local tradition. For all his moist-eyed claims about honouring the land of his mother's birth - Mary Anne Trump, nee MacLeod, came from the Isle of Lewis - the development he has proposed is much more Myrtle Beach than Balmedie. Golf was Scotland's gift to the world; it would do better to stick to the original version rather than re-import its American form.