Navigation for Sunday Morning

8:12 Insight: Poverty and Education

International tests show New Zealand's schools are among the best in the world. But they also show the link between low income and under-achievement is particularly strong in this country. Education correspondent, John Gerritsen, explores why a child's low socio-economic background often means low educational achievement. He speaks to researchers and teachers about the link and how difficult it is to overcome.
Produced by Philippa Tolley.

8:40 Tina Rosenberg – Suicide, Enemy of Soldiers

Suicide is the leading cause of death in the US army. More soldiers die by suicide than in combat or vehicle accidents, and the number is rising. Post-traumatic stress is the main reason why many soldiers take their own lives. Tina Rosenberg has been looking at the problem, and what’s being done about it.
Tina Rosenberg is contributing writer for The New York Times magazine and author of “Join the Club: How Peer Pressure Can Transform the World.”

9:06 Mediawatch

Our universities are supposed to be “a critic and conscience of society” –something they have in common with our news media. So with the media facing tough times financially, should universities and polytechnics now try to play a greater role? Mediawatch also looks at how our big TV broadcasters are blurring the boundaries between advertising and journalism by creating their own ad agencies.
Produced and presented by Colin Peacock and Jeremy Rose.

9.40 Phil Arkow – Animal Abuse

Phil Arkow is speaking at the 23rd New Zealand Companion Animal Conference in Wellington next week.  He’s the co-ordinator of the US National Link Coalition, which promotes awareness of the connection between animal abuse and violence against humans, the chair of the Latham Foundation’s Animal Abuse and Family Violence Prevention Programme, and a lecturer on animal-assisted therapy.

10:06 Ideas: The Future of the Railways

Earlier this week KiwiRail announced it was mothballing the Napier-to-Gisborne line. So what is the future of rail in New Zealand? We speak to KiwiRail chief executive Jim Quinn; transport historian Euan McQueen; and emeritus professor of transport studies Chris Kissling. Plus professor Peter Newman on the success of a revitalised commuter rail system in Perth, and author James McCommons tells us about the situation in the United States where work is just about to begin on a $20 billion high speed railway between Los Angeles and San Francisco.
Produced by Jeremy Rose.

10.55 Today’s Track – Mutt Romney Blues

Today’s track is a song in response to the revelation that in 1983, when the Republican nominee for the US presidency, Mitt Romney, took his family on holiday, their dog Seamus traveled in a kennel strapped to the roof of the car. Mutt Romney Blues is a track from Ry Cooder’s album, Election Special, (Nonesuch Records) which was released in August. Cooder says the album is a wake-up call for American voters.

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, a surprise announcement that a number of Christchurch schools will be closed has left that already traumatised community reeling from another sort of aftershock.

11.12 Barry Saunders - Warratah Sound

It's 25 years since The Warratahs got together and today Chris Laidlaw talks to founder member, guitarist and singer-songwriter Barry Saunders about his love of music, life with the band, and going solo. We’ll also play some tracks from The Warratahs latest album, The Warratahs 25 Year Collection. (Ode Records)

11.40 Wayne Brittenden’s Counterpoint: Dystopian Visions

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. Today, with the outgoing BBC Director General’s objection to a proposed statue of George Orwell outside Broadcasting House, on the basis that it would be “too left wing”, Wayne this week looks at the dystopian visions of both Orwell and Aldous Huxley, with reference to some extraordinary surveillance developments in Britain. Chris then follows up with two studio guests from the UK – a foremost authority on George Orwell, Professor Peter Davison, and the director of Big Brother Watch, Nick Pickles.