The man once regularly cited as Scotland's most senior civil servant, Sir John Elvidge, established himself as someone worth listening to both in and out of office.
Is Sir John Elvidge "worth paying attention to"? Certainly not if we look at the content of his remarks rather than his admittedly impressive background.
This is a man who, in his comments about Orkney and Shetland, gives credence to the dangerous partitionist drivel spouted by Tavish Scott and a handful of other such pathetic attention-seekers. So he's not exactly taking an early lead in the credibility stakes.
Even worse, he actually seems to believe that Westminster will graciously deliver devo-whatever in the event of a NO vote despite there being neither incentive nor imperative to do so and despite the fact that all the British parties have already set their face against any further devolution. Both British Labour and their Tory allies have had ample opportunity to deliver meaningful additional powers. They signally failed to do so.
The whole story of devolution within the British state has been one of making the minimum concessions in response to growing support for the SNP while keeping ultimate power at Westminster. At every stage, up to and including the Calman Commission, the overarching priority has been to preserve the power of Westminster rather than deliver a settlement that addressed what was best for the people of Scotland.
More recently, when offered the opportunity to put a "more powers" option on the referendum ballot, the British parties rejected the idea with a vehemence that was a clear statement of their attitude to further devolution.
And now, while some in the British parties attempt to deceive the people of Scotland with empty talk of talks about considering the possibility of perhaps some further constitutional tinkering at some undetermined date... maybe, others are openly advocating the emasculation and even the abolition of the Scottish Parliament.
In the face of all this, how can anybody imagine that devo-whatever will be delivered despite our leverage being forfeited by a No vote?
So how much store should we set by Sir John's talk of "toxic polarisation" given that he is so misguided about other aspects of the referendum campaign? What is this polarisation other than the natural and inevitable outcome of a democratic process in which there are two opposed and mutually incompatible positions? Are we to abandon democracy simply because it leads to a contest between opposing views? Is that not what democracy is supposed to do?
We are living with the "toxic legacy" of a system which means that Scotland all too often ends up with a government at UK level which we have rejected at the polls. The only way the independence referendum might leave such a legacy is if the outcome were similarly grossly unfair. It is generally agreed that the Referendum Bill currently going through the Scottish Parliament will establish a framework that will ensure that the referendum is fair in all its practical aspects. Any perception of unfairness will therefore be likely to arise from the manner in which the campaign is conducted. For example, if the UK Government fails to respect the 16 week "purdah" period. Or if the people of Scotland feel that the result is based on distortion, deceit, dishonesty and scaremongering of the sort that has led Better Together to brand itself Project Fear.
Independence supporters will accept a No vote with appropriate good grace for the simple reason that they will be aware that this is only a setback to their cause and not a defeat. In the event of a Yes vote, the anti-independence campaign will, by contrast, have to swallow total and irrevocable defeat. The conduct of Project Fear so far does not suggest that they will take this defeat well. But, for the most part, pragmatism will prevail even where goodwill is in short supply.
Whether or not there is a "toxic legacy" therefore seems to be very much a matter for the London government and the anti-independence campaign. Let us hope they can rise to the occasion.