A clever, intellectual, inquiring, methodical mind allied to one of the most least self-aggrandizing personalities, despite clear ability and ambition, in the Labour ranks in the Commons, Meacher never quite got into alignment with the political moment during his 45 years in the Commons.
As I reflect on PMQs I can't help wondering what would happen if I ran one of my leadership meetings that way, with that lack of respect for another human, with that level of disdain for giving an actual answer and that level of bawdy, sneering, finger pointing. Hang on, it'd be like that other make-believe, pantomime view of the world; The Apprentice.
Repeat after me: Security. Stability. Sclerosis. Security. Stability. Sclerosis. If you had to describe the Tory austerity mantra in the run up to May's election with three words, these would probably cover it. The intent here is clear; blur the meaning of austerity from political choice to national necessity and you soften public opinion to ideological cuts...
The Scunthorpe Steel Works have provided jobs and income to families in the town for over 150 years. The announcement of 2,200 job losses and the closure of the Redcar plant started speculation in Scunthorpe. The news today that over 900 jobs would be cut confirmed the town's worst fears. The possibility of the closure of the Scunthorpe Steel Works is becoming a reality. As a Scunthorpe resident, I'm worried about the future. What will happen to my town?
Five months in, we already have a very clear picture of life under a Tory government. It is a gruesome image, but one that we do not have to accept. We can defeat these grossly unfair cuts to tax credits and in so doing expose the fact that austerity is a political choice, not an economic necessity.
The Lib Dems warned about the £12billion of welfare saving and the impact on communities. But in the heat of an election people get tired of claim and counterclaim and people thought: 'I've heard the PM rule it out'. Their tax credits were safe. But yet again, the PR man put some spin on a story. Now working people are set to lose out.
When questioned during the live TV debates before the General Election about cuts to tax credits, David Cameron told the British people he wasn't going to even touch them. As a result, the Conservatives no doubt won the votes of many people whose tax credits are soon to be cut. And we all know now that those votes were won on an outright lie. That is why today in Parliament Labour will call on the Prime Minister to stick by what he promised the British people only a matter of months ago. Because it is this kind of politics that the public can't stand. It is the same old politics that saw the Lib Dems dumped by the electorate in May.
In-fighting is not an appealing factor in voting for any party, and it is not an effective factor in forming opposition towards a majority government. It is time that in-fighting was exposed for what it really is; useless. It achieves nothing and will doom its party to the fate of nothing.
Committee stage continues this week where I will be going through the legislation, line by line, with colleagues to pick apart the provisions in the bill. Like last week, I'm sure there will be times when I'm left feeling frustrated but one thing is certain - I, along with my Labour Party colleagues, will continue to stand strong in opposition to this bill.
Maybe it won't just be in-work benefits that are seen as vital but all forms: Employment and Support Allowance, Personal Independence Payments, Jobseeker's. Sometimes it takes having your behaviour changed and putting yourself in someone else's shoes to change your opinion. Unwittingly, Osborne might be about to nudge a large group of people into swapping shoes with those they once condemned.
The fact that I didn't support Jeremy Corbyn to be the leader of the party seems to have been taken, by some, as if I tried to steal their first-born child and sell it to an elf with a golden spinning wheel. It's not just cyberspace where such pearl-clutching sensitivity goes on...
On Wednesday, David Cameron told the House of Commons that he and I agreed. No, prime minister, we most certainly do not. For the avoidance of doubt, let me spell it out. The thresholds for industrial action being brought forward by the Conservatives in their trade union bill are not acceptable. They erect a double hurdle for millions of workers, in the main low paid and female, to clear before they can take lawful action to defend themselves and they will trip unions into law-breaking as they endeavour to uphold the fundamental freedom of all workers, the right to withdraw their labour.
Why would you participate in such a vote that had no real consequences? A standing order that can be easily changed in another short 90 minutes debate straight after the next election. That has nothing to do with an opposition. In a charade all of the Chancellor's making. We should have walked away from this theatrical nonsense and left the Chancellor to drown in his own folly building our own credible response.
There can be no doubt that the Syrian crisis is spiralling out of control, and that US and EU attempts to develop anything that remotely resembles a coherent approach have been woefully inadequate. But it is not too late. Now is the time for our government to step into the vacuum; now is the time for our Prime Minister to show some leadership, and to start engaging in pro-active diplomacy in Moscow, Tehran, Washington, Ankara and Riyadh; now is the time for a roadmap to peace and stability... Clearly, we will have to compromise with Moscow and Tehran, and those compromises will certainly cause us discomfort along the way. The Syria crisis is a blood-soaked game of shadows. We must now learn and adapt to its rules; and we must start playing to win.
The progress on this front is slow but significant and there are many positive signs that we are moving towards an engaged and constructive dialogue on issues not to be taken lightly as the parliamentary vote on Swaziland's eligibility for the Economic Partnership Agreement nears. We will make every effort to sustain the momentum.
Labour has every chance of winning the next general election. But only if we are consistent and sensible with our policy positions. Only if we can prove that we once again deserve to be trusted to run the economy. I fear that in opposing the fiscal charter we have moved further away from this.