It's been a mantra of various party leaders over the years that they realise the flaws of the EU but believe it is better to work to reform it from the inside than withdraw from it entirely. They say it when they are in opposition and they keep on saying it when they are in power - but it never happens.
So then they changed the angle and started saying that it will be easier to reform the EU if it was enlarged. They said that when it went from 10-12, again when it increased to 15, repeated it once more as it expanded to 25 and regurgitating the same old tired phrases as it went through it's latest enlargement to 27.
Twenty seven is not only the current number of countries in the EU - it is also the number of years since the EU first expanded while Britain was a member state (Greece - 1981). Twenty seven years after that first expansion and in all that time we have had as much success in reforming the EU as an ant would have moving a mountain.
Normally, if someone kept telling you something that never comes true, you'd stop believing them. At some point, considerably less than 27 years one would hope, those people themselves who keep saying this would realise that it ain't ever going to happen - but not with the EU and not with our bunch of self-serving politicians.
Nope - twenty seven years after that first expansion they keep telling us that further expansion will make it easier to reform the EU from the inside. It never does and it never will. Even so, our politicians will continue to lie to us and repeat the same old tired phrases - and nothing will ever change.
We've come to learn to accept that from politicians and from leftist news sources like the Grauniad and Independent (they're not, are you?) but far far worse than that is the leader in today's Telegraph.
This haven of western secularism among Muslim countries is a prototype for the Middle East's future. Rightly, it is a prospective member of the EU: its accession would establish a bridgehead between Europe and the Islamic world.
OK - two things about this opening statement. Firstly, Turkey's "secularism" is a very thin facade which just about covers the major cities and tourist parts of the country, but aside from that and particularly in the interior Turkey is very much an Islamic state. Secondly, the Islamic world already had a bridgehead in Europe thanks to mass Moslem immigration into Europe - and why would we, facing the threat of Islamic imperialism as we do now, want to make that bridgehead even larger?
To make matters worse the Telegraph then repeats that tired old mantra .....
It would also help Europe move towards a broader and looser free trade area and away from the top-down, over-regulated superstate dreamed of by the Brussels establishment.
Why would it? Why would Turkey's accession to the EU achieve what our accession failed to achieve - or the accession of Poland, Czech Republic, Hungary or the other states which have equally failed to bring any hint of reform to the EU?
It won't. We see with the EU Constitution that far from reforming the EU is actually becoming more entrenched in its ways. Only the vote of the Irish is holding that up and you can bet that a few bribes added to a bit of good old fashioned bullying will soon see that vote turned around with no concessions from the EU.
I find it very worrying that a so-called conservative paper like the Telegraph has bought into this ridiculous idea that it is possible to reform the EU. It has never reformed in the past, why do they think it will in the future - the only reform the EU does is to tighten the screw on national independence further and further - snaking tendrils of interfering regulation into more and more aspects of our sovereignty.
The idea that adding Turkey to the list of members will change any of that is utter lunacy. What it will do, though, is speed up the Islamification of Europe and hasten the time when certain European nations wake up to find they have semi-autonomous Moslem enclaves in their middle of their country.