Waiting for the Langoliers

I have been thinking a fair bit about the pavlovian tendencies currently infecting the Labour party. There seems to be an unwillingness to move on, to admit past errors and to move with the times.

It got me thinking some more. I recalled watching a movie some years back call The Langoliers and I think it is a fitting metaphor for where the Labour party is at right now.

In the movie a group of airline passengers are trapped ‘the past, a world that forbids time travelers to observe or interfere with past events, but a deserted world that “time” has left behind.’

Not only that the Langoliers are out there they ‘are the timekeepers of eternity, and that their purpose is to eat what is left of the past.’

So because they have Phil Goff as leader, a relic of the past and not able to even remotely connect with the present they are stuck in the past, the past created for them by Helen Clark, left behind by world and local events. They are waiting for the Langoliers to consume them and they don’t know what to do about it all. They truly are trapped by their past. their “world” forbids them from observing or commenting on the errors of the past. It is expressly forbidden, Labour’s group think is that Helen Clark is a saint and did no wrong. The electorate doesn’t think that and changed their view some time ago leaving Labour behind.

The election is the main body of Langoliers and it is coming to consume the legacy of the past.

Unfortunately that is just the first wave, just like in the movie there are lead elements and I think the election is just that. After their defeat on November 26 Labour is faced with having to renew but with a diminished caucus filled with the remnants ‘that “time” has left behind’. And so Labour must face the second wave of Langoliers in order to clean out their caucus.

It maybe an imperfect metaphor but is one that works if in a bizarre way to understand why Labour fails to move ahead. They need to break with the past, and do it quickly to escape the Langoliers.


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  • diabolos

    Great movie Cam – like most of Stephen Kings work.

    I submit however – who are the langoliers actually coming for in November??

    I loved the scenes where you could hear the Langoliers gnashing away over the horizon.

    “For whom (does) the bell toll(s)

  • reid

    Good analogy Cam this is exactly what’s going to happen to them come the election.

    I’m afraid the Langoliers are going to be quite tame by comparison with the coming mauling nay complete and utter decimation. With Phil at the helm they’ve got about as much chance of surviving it as a paper bag containing 1kg of semtex has.

    Pity it’s only the old guard in the party who will get back in Parliament based on current data, isn’t it.

    I wonder what position Andrew’s going to get in Silent-T’s Shadow Cabinet?

    • Thats assuming Little makes the cut reid. There should be about six portfolios each for anyone who puts their hand up.

  • Steve

    I just backed up The Langoliers and watched it about two weeks ago. Labour are lost in time, and they think they can return to the present and everything will be normal again with Phil and co in power.
    Pure fiction

  • John

    Cam i was scared today, i have been in the Hawkes Bay ie Meeani, but the bay is covered by the plastic grinning key hordings, (HE LOOKS FUCKEN SHIFTY ,THE SHOT) ,the message a better tommorow, fuck i was made redundant under this $59000000* allowing for money market pricks ripping NZ of
    Is NZ trying to catch up with hone key, im to scared to go to sleep just in case english and key have sold NZ to china india russia or who can make these troughers richer
    Stephen King looked at the smarly hordings of hone key and said i can write a book around a country that went to sleep why a smarly arsehole sold the country with a weak grin, and smoke and mirrors

    • I’m told that excessive drug use induces paranoia and psychosis…from your comments I suggest that there is categoric proof.