The European Parliament started as a democratic fig-leaf and has steadily gained power. To placate French pride, it sits in two places, Strasbourg and Brussels, at considerable cost and inconvenience.
What happens when the mood of a whole nation can be characterised by hopelessness and despair? In Greece, where people have been on the receiving end of severe austerity measures and lived through six years of recession, it's a question that politics, as we know it, seems incapable of addressing.
Modern politics is all about framing. Due to decades of public skepticism towards politicians, party leaders no longer wish to be seen as dogmatic ideologues, they would much rather be thought of as pragmatic managers of public life.
It is the same old budget as before, nothing new or modern about it. Farming and structural funds are the name of the game. It is like the EU's leaders have lazily gone to the fridge, rummaged around for the same old budget they've been serving up for the last 50 years, warmed it up a bit and whacked it on a plate. Bon appétit, Europe.
Under the blitz of current Orwell stuff in the media there's a recurring theme: what would the great man have made of the present day, and how right was he about the modern world? Recent chit-chat in my office was broadly positive about his "predictive" powers. Recent chit-chat in my office was broadly positive about his "predictive" powers: Doublespeak (modern political/managerial jargon?), Telescreens (TV, especially those tuned to the Big Brother house on Channel 5!), Napoleon, the revolutionary-turned-authoritarian pig from Animal Farm.
Referenda are neither for the faint-hearted nor for the inexperienced. Like most EU issues, this debate will be contentious and emotionally charged. There will be charges and counter-charges, fear tactics, negative messages, conspiracy theories, misleading polls, half truths and full lies.
You may think the title of this article is ridiculous, but sadly it is not. One of the problems seen so frequently in the EU and Eurozone in particular is the difficulty of collecting correct or even reasonably accurate data.
Romanians are used to coming bottom of the European pile. I know, I'm married to one. He lives in Britain, and is often told he 'sounds English' - lucky chap.
The multi-annual financial framework is not just a budget, but rather a political act, an expression of Europe's ambitions by which we commit to financing common policies and projects that are of mutual benefit. This is more, not less, relevant in times of hardship and economic crisis.
Ukip believes in merging income tax and national insurance into a flat rate income tax to greatly simplify our tax code, which currently stands at over 11,000 pages.
If the Great Recession has proved one thing it is that there are few economic responses that both left and right can agree upon, or even really agree upon even among themselves.
Get out the map and dust off the history books. Britain IS part of Europe. Since the Roman and Norman invasions, its politics have been our politics.
With the thorn of Ukip in his side David Cameron knew that he had to do something about 'Britain and the EU' before the niggling wound became infected and caused even more problems down the line.
As predicted with many Asian and American politicians staying home, European leaders like punch drunk boxers who have gone too many rounds occupied centre stage, but many others seemed little interested in their troubles: the consensus at the start of the meeting, that the Euro will survive after all but Europe will be a low growth region for the foreseeable future, held.
As a veteran, I have learned that Davos is a kitchen out of which, given time, dishes come that do make the main menu.
Cameron's much-trailed speech, the build up for which he described as akin to tantric sex, has left me feeling more like a neglected wife than a satisfied lover.