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8:12 Insight: Auckland Economic Strategy

The amalgamation in 2010 of Auckland's local bodies into one large council is considered to have laid the foundation for a lift in the country's economic performance. Auckland's Economic Development Strategy is launched in mid-September, and Auckland correspondent Todd Niall looks at the chances of it reaching ambitious goals such as doubling the region's real economic growth.
Produced by Philippa Tolley.

8:40 James Harris – Workers of the World

James Harris, 64, is a veteran trade unionist and longstanding leader of the US Socialist Workers Party. He has been active for more than four decades in the struggle for Black rights, protests against US wars from Vietnam to Afghanistan, and working class politics. He’s also a candidate in the US presidential election.

9:06 Mediawatch

Mediawatch asks the boss of the country’s biggest daily paper what a big change in its format will means for its journalism; and the man representing our top criminal lawyers says it’s time to rethink cameras in our courtrooms because the TV coverage of trials is too sensational. Mediawatch also looks at how the so-called Beast of Blenheim came by that name, and why our Auckland-based media are suddenly so interested in chickens.
Produced and presented by Colin Peacock and Jeremy Rose.

9.45 Patricia O’Brien – Island Connections

Dr Patricia O’Brien explores the friendship that was forged between Samoan nationalist leader Ta'isi Olaf Nelson and Maori politician Sir Maui Pomare. She talks about the role this played in the years of fraught relations between Samoa and New Zealand, and looks at the historical connections that were made through this friendship, between Samoans and Maori.
Dr O'Brien is the 2012 JD Stout Fellow in New Zealand Studies at Victoria University. Her JD Stout lecture ‘Ta'isi Olaf Nelson and Sir Maui Pomare: Samoans and Maori Reunited’ is at Victoria University this coming Wednesday.

10:06 Ideas: Education for Education’s Sake

MIT – which was ranked the world’s top university by QS University Rankings earlier this week – has led the way in making its course work freely available on the internet. Ideas talks to Rebecca Griffiths, an expert on online learning from the United States, about why elite universities are offering some of the courses for free; we hear about Chalkle, a new start-up that has seen Wellingtonians flocking to courses covering everything from longbow making to cooking the perfect paella; and Dr Robin Williams recalls attending WEA lectures by the philosopher of science Karl Popper in 1930s Canterbury.
Presented by Chris Laidlaw
Produced by Jeremy Rose.

10.55 Today’s Track

In Today’s Track we feature Tom Jones with a Leonard Cohen composition – Tower of Song. It’s from his recent album Spirit In The Room in which the 72-year-old veteran singer is still in fine voice – and recording an album in the same roots and gospel vein as 2010’s Praise and Blame.

11.05 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, Ezekiel and his devoted wife have decided to take advantage of the government’s ‘charter schools’ initiative.

11.12 Neil Mitchell – Pointing the Finger

From the American and British counter-insurgency in Iraq to the bombing of Dresden and the Amritsar Massacre in India, civilians are often abused and killed when they are caught in the cross-fire of wars and other conflicts. In Democracy’s Blameless Leaders, Neil Mitchell examines how leaders in democracies manage the blame for the abuse and the killing of civilians, arguing that politicians are likely to react in a self-interested and opportunistic way and seek to deny and evade accountability.
Neil Mitchell is Professor of International Relations in the School of Public Policy at University College London. His book, Democracy's Blameless Leaders: From Dresden to Abu Ghraib, How Leaders Evade Accountability for Abuse, Atrocity, and Killing, is published by NYU Press

11.40 Wayne Brittenden’s Counterpoint

Wayne Brittenden has been Radio New Zealand’s correspondent in several capital cities over the years. Each week he gives fresh insights into a wide variety of topics of national and international concern, followed by Chris Laidlaw’s discussion of the issue with guests. This week Wayne considers Anglo Saxon attitudes towards punishment, and the trend in some countries, including NZ, towards privatised prisons. Chris follows-up with two guests – David Brown, Emeritus Professor of Crown Law at the University of New South Wales and Tony Taylor, Emeritus Professor of Psychology at Victoria University.

11.55 Feedback

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