Navigation for Sunday Morning

7:10 Professor Gary McLean on Covid-19 vaccine side effects 

Joining us again on Sunday Morning is New Zealander Gary McLean, who is a professor in molecular immunology at London Metropolitan University and an international authority on coronaviruses. Professor McLean is with us to look at all of the latest news relating to the Covid-19 pandemic, including the mild systemic side effects people using Covid-19 vaccinations are experiencing, and why women are more likely to experience these side effects.

Gary McLean

Gary McLean Photo: Supplied

7.32 The House

Every May there's a day where journalists are locked up with a document outlining the Government's spending plan for the next year. But it's not all shrouded in secrecy. Weeks before the budget lock-up the Government releases a Budget Policy Statement which outlines the priorities that guide its spending decisions. The House takes a look at how Parliament processes that document.  

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Photo: VNP / Daniela Maoate-Cox

7:45 Should couples have joint or separate bank accounts?

America's Matriarch of Money Suze Orman says couples should not share bank accounts, and that joint accounts can lead to power imbalances and a loss of autonomy. She suggests instead that couples should contribute a percentage of their earnings towards household expenses that is proportionate to their incomes. Katrina Shanks, the chief executive officer of Financial Advice New Zealand, says it's not that cut and dried. She joins the show to discuss.

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Photo: 123RF

8:10 Calling Home: Jason Williams in New Westminster, B.C. 

Christchurch-raised Jason Williams headed to Canada in 2016 to take up an opportunity with a NZ-owned baggage handling solutions company and has since moved on to work at Vancouver Airport Authority, which manages the second biggest airport in the country. When not working, he and partner Kayne take advantage of the area's beautiful hikes and ski areas, including Whistler which is right on Vancouver's doorstep.

Jason Williams (R) with his partner Kayne Meyers-Harris

Jason Williams (R) with his partner Kayne Meyers-Harris Photo: Supplied

8:41 The Weekend Panel with Josie Pagani and Louis Houlbrooke

On the Weekend Panel this morning are Josie Pagaini in Auckland and Louis Houlbrooke in Wellington. Among other issues, they'll be looking at duck shooters, how much exercise we're getting, the success of the vaccine rollout, housing policy changes, and the New Zealand Rugby Union's deal with Silver Lake. 

050518 Photo: Richard Cosgrove / Fish & Game NZ
Opening Day of the 2018 water fowl season in Canterbury hunters in action on a pond in the Selwyn District

Photo: Fish & Game New Zealand

9:06 Mediawatch

This week Mediawatch looks at more research showing our trust in the news seems to be slipping. Whose news don't we trust any more? And why? Also: the reaction to rugby's new deal with big money in the US - and online surveys misrepresenting public opinion. 

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Photo: RNZ

9:37 Living on liquid: the floating house called Freedom Cove

Thirty years ago Catherine King and Wayne Adams decided to start a project to build their dream home - a floating complex off the coast of western Canada which they have dubbed Freedom Cove. The pair, who are both artists, have a full life maintaining the hand-built structure which encompasses a dance hall, candle factory, an art gallery, four greenhouses and a sprawling garden, all made from materials salvaged over the years. Catherine and Wayne join the show to talk about their weird and wonderful home. 

Freedom Cove - the floating complex built by Catherine King and Wayne Adams

Freedom Cove - the floating complex built by Catherine King and Wayne Adams Photo: Supplied / Aaron Mason

10:04 The Musical Chair: Erin Boag

Originally hailing from Auckland, Erin Boag moved to England in 1996 with the intention of building her career for a few years - but she ended up staying. Nowadays she is probably best known for appearing on the first 10 seasons of the popular BBC celebrity dance contest, Strictly Come Dancing, where she has partnered with the likes of comedian Julian Clary, Manchester United's Peter Schmeichel and Olympic hurdler Colin Jackson. Erin and her dance partner of 24 years, Anton Du Beke, were on the last leg of their tour when the UK's Covid-19 lockdowns kicked in - and they had to cancel a slew of 2021 dates - but now the pair are looking forward to a dance down the Danube.

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Photo: Supplied

10:40 My Current Song: Stewart Allan, 'Shall We Dance'

Stewart Allan is an Auckland-based songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. From singing behind the Iron Curtain, touring Japan and New Zealand as well as directing and writing music for stage and screen, he sings, plays guitar, piano, and sitar. His new track 'Shall We Dance' is the first single from his forthcoming album '9 Rooms', with the music video featuring 109 dancers aged from 8 months to 77 years old, busting moves in 14 countries across six continents. 

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Photo: Supplied / Jen Raoult-Clair

10:53 'We need to start talking about robo-ethics' 

A study by a team of Japanese researchers has shown that children may not be as empathetic towards robots as initially thought. But it's not just kids who have it in for robots -- adults can be just as bad. And we are living in a world that will see a lot more robots in the future. Sunday Morning tech correspondent Helen Baxter says we need to start thinking about how we behave towards robots. 

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Photo: 123RF

11:05 Why our brains solve problems by adding things, not removing them  

We're always told that we shouldn't complicate matters, but a new study from the University of Virginia shows that our brains tend to default to addition rather than subtraction when it comes to finding solutions. Indeed, even with financial incentive, we still don't think to take away. Study author and former professional football player, Professor Leidy Klotz's new book, Subtract: The Untapped Science of Less, explains why we overlook subtraction, and how people can access its true potential. 

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Photo: Supplied / Clemson University

11:39 Travelling to countries that do not officially exist 

For various and often complicated reasons, there are a number of countries around the world that do not officially exist -- despite having their own governments, passports, political systems and even currencies. But that didn't stop Brazilian author Guilherme Canever trying to visit them all. He's written about his experiences in his latest book, Unrecognised Nations: Travels To Countries That Do Not Exist

Guilherme Canever in Abkhazia

Guilherme Canever in Abkhazia Photo: Supplied