Navigation for Sunday Morning

8:12 Insight: PNG and Political Mayhem

Papua New Guinea’s recent general election marks a major political juncture for the resource-rich but impoverished Pacific nation.  Coming after political conflict, which has dominated PNG's government for the past year, the country appears on the cusp of prosperity and mayhem alike. Johnny Blades looks at whether PNG’s political leadership can keep the nation from tipping into chaos.
Produced by Philippa Tolley.

8:40 Judith G Kelley – Eyes on the Ballot Box

Do election monitors improve democracy? What happens when they disagree, and how much does their own political baggage affect their ability to dispassionately gauge electoral freedom in non-established democracies? Judith G Kelley talks to Chris about the good, the bad and the ugly in election monitoring.
Monitoring Democracy: When International Election Observation Works and Why it Often Fails, by Judith G Kelley, is published by Princeton University Press.

9:06 Mediawatch

Mediawatch looks at how the media burst our Olympic bubble this week after the first serious setback in London – and while there’s more of the Games than ever on the air, where’s all the coverage coming from? Mediawatch also looks at new ways of paying for new journalism in New Zealand; another case of an ignored embargo on some important news; and how a provocative promotion by a small business backfired.
Produced and presented by Colin Peacock and Jeremy Rose.

9:40 Down the List

Where does the real power in New Zealand lie? That’s right, with a bunch of bureaucrats, underlings, officials, and lowly-ranked list MPs that you and I have never heard of.  Whether it’s in sport, politics, commerce, education or the arts, the only way to find out what’s really going on in this country is by going ... Down the List. Written by Dave Armstrong and produced by Radio New Zealand’s Drama department.  Today, New Zealand cricket is going through a very bad patch.  Deputy Assistant Vice Tour Manager Graham Googly is beyond desperation about the Black Caps’ lack of winning form and looking for something to turn the situation around. 

9.45 Alison Lewin – Finding Freedom

Alison Lewin lives among the Shangaan people in a remote part of Zimbabwe, providing voluntary help and expertise where it’s needed. She talks to Chris about the freedom that comes from her life and work, the joy of walking alongside the people in her community, and how she’s only back in New Zealand to earn money to support herself and her work in Zimbabwe – and return there as quick as she can.
Alison is setting up a trust to finance her voluntary work – if you’d like to help you can email her at

10:06 Ideas: Jim Flynn

Jim Flynn is arguably New Zealand’s foremost moral philosopher. His pioneering work on IQs has changed the way we think about intelligence. Professor Flynn reflects on his life and influences and talks about some of the individuals and thinkers who have shaped his unique outlook on the world – a list which includes such diverse figures as Plato and the American socialist organiser Eugene Debes.
Recent books by Jim Flynn include: Are We Getting Smarter (Cambridge University Press); Fate and Philosophy (Awa Press); and The Torchlight List (Awa Press.)
Presented by Chris Laidlaw
Produced by Jeremy Rose.

10.55 Today’s Track

This week we feature Shawn Mullins with Give God The Blues. It's from the album Mercyland: Hymns For The Rest Of Us that came out earlier this year. It’s a compilation of various artists looking at the qualities of faith and is put together by Christian producer and writer Phil Madeira. Performers on the album include The Civil Wars, Buddy Miller, The Carolina Chocolate Drops, The North Mississippi Allstars, Emmylou Harris, and John Scofield. Writer Lucas Hendrickson described the album concept as “art informed by faith and grounded by reality”.

11.05 Alastair Bisley – Water Care

The chairman of the Land and Water Forum, Alastair Bisley, talks to Chris about the collective decision by government, local government, farmers, environmental organisations and other interests to come together and hammer out a blueprint for the management of water.

11.40 Musical Journeys

Chris Laidlaw invites listeners to have a say on this musical journey around the world. We're sticking with London again this week, and kicking off with a motivational song for the athletes – Yello and The Race. As well as the East End Olympic Stadium, competitions are being held around the city, including on the streets, so we'll play Ralph McTell with his classic Streets of London. Listener Stan Halpin emailed his track request, Underneath the Arches by Flanagan and Allen – from way back in 1932, and we finish today's journey with  Richard Thompson and the Sights and Sounds Of London Town. Next week will be our last in London and what is a visit there without a West End musical. We are spoilt for choice at the moment – The Lion King, Shrek, and Billy Elliot are all on, plus  musicals on Queen and Michael Jackson, and Les Mis and Phantom continue to play. Let us know what track you would like to hear from a West End musical. Email

11.55 Feedback

What the listeners have to say on today’s programme.