What is "extreme" about providing free electricity and food stamps to 300,000 Greek families now living below the poverty line, as Syriza has pledged to do? Syriza's programme of debt relief, fiscal stimulus and financial support for the poorest, rather than the richest, is mainstream macroeconomics. The party is merely planning to do what the textbooks suggest.
The Greek elections really show that politics can generate interest and excitement. In their hearts, electorates really want their Governments to govern and to do things. It may suit Nick Clegg to try for honesty with the electorate about can and cannot be achieved by Government but Greece shows that sometimes they want dynamism and action.
The question is do we really need to feel a sense of fear or discomfort to become truly engaged in politics? Do we want to be numb to what's truly going on and get distracted by reports in mainstream tabloid media putting the blame on the overused and now farcical phrase and sentiment of: "its the immigrants coming over here and nicking our jobs?"
It looks as if 2015 could turn out to be Europe's Year of the Insurgents... More than at any time since the end of the Cold War, Europe needs clear, determined leaders who can calm voters' anger and offer reassurance that better times are coming, especially for those who have been hardest hit by the age of austerity. Anger, fear and intolerance of minorities are a highly dangerous mix - we have seen before where they can lead when populist politicians fan the flames. The coming year will be a test that Europe must not fail.
Defined by a storm in a D cup, this week The Sun newspaper's decision to 'hilariously' pretend it had listened to anti-Page 3 campaigners was offensively unfunny. Put to one side the endless debate and incorrect columns about Page 3's supposed demise, if the aim was to cynically generate a shed load of free PR for the declining red top then bravo, didn't they do well. Now the challenge they face is trying to convince the rest of us that we should keep reading.
The economic dangers associated with the introduction of the Euro were predictable - and indeed predicted by many. Yet political leaders at the time chose to make a grand and hubristic political statement irrespective of the devastation it could bring to their citizens. The Euro is, maybe, the best example of the consequences of a political and policy elite living in their own world and totally divorced from the consequences of their actions on ordinary people.