The not-so-wily Erdogan's heavy-handed crackdown on protesters has given the master race at the EU the latest justification for stalling Turkey's admittance.
The bottom line for Frau Merkel is that she doesn't want to share Europe with non-Europeans, but one simply cannot put forward such a baldly racist position in the modern era. Hence the doublespeak about Turkish "economic structures" being the impediment to progress.
And of course the non-stop coverage of police brutality underlines the fact that those people are not truly ripe for entry into the club of civilized nations.
The other factor working against Erdogan is that he has been left holding the sack for the ill-fated Syrian revolution. An eager partner two years ago when his NATO betters convinced him of the inevitable and speedy triumph of some imaginary Arab "spring" in Damascus, Erdogan feels increasingly isolated as his allies lose interest and the conflict increasingly bleeds into Turkey.
Erdogan needs to wake up to the fact that his country will not join the EU club anytime soon and proceed from there.
Rejected by the West, perhaps Turkey needs to look in the other direction.