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Kickass News

Hosted by Hollywood producer and political media strategist Ben Mathis, KickAss News is a twice weekly podcast that features the most interesting personalities and thought leaders in politics, entertainment, tech, business, science, and more. Enjoy the podcast? Then please support the show and help keep us on the air by making a donation to our GoFundMe campaign at www.gofundme.com/kickassnews. Another way you can support the show is to subscribe to the podcast and leave us a review on iTunes to help keep us ranking strong on the top podcasts charts. For more information visit www.kickassnews.com. Thanks for listening!
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Now displaying: 2019
Mar 21, 2019

Bestselling authors Dr. Warren Farrell (Why Men Are The Way They Are) and Dr. John Gray (Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus) warn that boys around the world are in crisis and say it's largely the result of a crisis of fathers who suffer from a "purpose void" as their traditional role is being diminished. They reveal how moms and dads parent differently and how fathers use things like rough-housing with the kids to establish boundaries.  They discuss how the lack of boundaries can lead to ADD and ADHD in young men and caution parents to focus on the root cause of ADD before they resort to drugs like Aderall.  They talk about the difficulty they’ve had getting lawmakers to take the boy crisis seriously and offer some recommendations for how the government and our schools can help address this growing problem.

Order John and Warren's new book The Boy Crisis: Why Our Boys Are Struggling and What We Can Do About It on Amazon and learn more at www.boycrisis.org.  Keep up with Warren at www.warrenfarrell.com or on twitter at @drwarrenfarrell, and follow John at www.MarsVenus.com or on twitter at @RealJohnGray. Today's podcast was sponsored by Brother INKvestment tank printers.

Mar 18, 2019

Alyssa Mastromonaco spent 6 years in the Obama White House as assistant to the president, director of scheduling and advance, and deputy chief of staff for operations.  She says working in the West Wing is a lot like VEEP and recalls some of the lighter moments including getting down on the dance-floor with Michelle Obama,
impersonating a hedge hog for President Obama,
and the time the leader of the free world tried to play matchmaker. She opens up about her at times comical struggles with irritable bowel syndrome including a few close calls at the most inconvenient moments, and the time that she contracted something called "beaver fever" (yes, it’s a real thing) during a state dinner in Tanzania.  She reveals all the care and protocol that went into every foreign trip she planned for President Obama, and why it was more than a little disheartening to watch President Trump bungle his way through a hastily thrown together North Korea summit.  She also warns that Trump’s use of a personal iPhone is a major security risk, she predicts what Democrats will be looking for in 2020, and she advises Dems to banish the term socialism from their vocabulary.

Order Alyssa Mastromonaco's book So Here's the Thing: Notes on Growing Up, Getting Older, and Trusting Your Gut on Amazon, Audible, or wherever books are sold.  Follow her on twitter at @AlyssaMastro44.  Today's podcast was sponsored by Kronos and BetterHelp.  Please take our annual podcast listener survey and register to win a $100 Amazon gift card at www.podsurvey.com/kick.  Subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts and leave us a review.  Follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod.  Visit our website at www.kickassnews.com.

Mar 14, 2019

Actor/comedian Bryan Callen (THE GOLDBERGS, SCHOOLED, HANGOVER I & II) shares how his childhood growing up in countries all over the world inspired him to question labels and defy categorization, and he discusses his particular issue with the catch all term "Asians" to describe 48 different nationalities.  We talk about the polarizing effect of political parties, why he believes that liberals and conservatives share the same fundamental values, and why everyone should demand to be treated like a verb instead of a noun.  Bryan gets into the problem of political correctness and says that standup comedy is probably the last bastion of free speech in America.  We talk about how he became associated with mixed martial arts, what it’s like inside the surprisingly inclusive world of MMA, and how women in the UFC cured him of chauvinism.  Plus Bryan thinks he’d be a terrible border patrol agent, his proposal to make the world a better place thought "idea sex," and why at the end of the day we're all just complicated apes.  

Don't miss Bryan's new comedy special BRYAN CALLEN: COMPLICATED APES now available on Comcast, DirecTV, Spectrum, AT&T, Dish, Cox, iTunes, Google Play, PlayStation, Xbox, and many more.  Watch Bryan on his ABC shows THE GOLDBERGS and SCHOOLED, subscribe to his podcasts THE FIGHTER AND THE KID and MIXED MENTAL ARTS on Apple Podcasts or wherever you like to listen, and follow him on twitter at @bryancallen.  Today's podcast was sponsored by Brother INKvestment tank printers.

Mar 11, 2019

Arthur Brooks, president of the American Enterprise Institute, returns to the podcast to call on Americans to reject the culture of contempt and the outrage industrial complex.  He talks about the event that woke him up to the ugliness of our political discourse two and a half years before the 2016 election.  He pulls back the curtain on how political parties are pushing us farther apart and how talking heads in the media are profitting from stoking division and hate.  Arthur reveals the connection between trolling on social media and personality disorders and his own strategy for handling angry emails and twitter trolls.  He shares what we can learn about civility from the Dalai Lama and a leading marriage counselor.  We discuss the power of stories to bridge divides and the necessity of the competition of ideas to a health democracy.  Plus, Arthur shares what he thinks about President Trump’s two hour speech at last week’s CPAC conference, the time he got mistaken for a Mormon (and loved every minute of it), and why this free-market conservative says everyone needs a friend like Cornel West or Robert George.  

Order Arthur's book Love Your Enemies: How Decent People Can Save America from the Culture of Contempt on Amazon, Audible, or wherever books are sold.  Subscribe to The Arthur Brooks Show wherever you listen podcasts and follow him on twitter at @arthurbrooks.  Today's podcast was sponsored by Brother INKvestment Tank Printers and season 2 of Breach podcast.  Please take our annual podcast listener survey and register to win a $100 Amazon gift card at www.podsurvey.com/kick.  Subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts and leave us a review, follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod, and visit our website at www.kickassnews.com.

Mar 7, 2019

On the 50th Anniversary of the Navy's legendary fighter pilot school known as Top Gun, the founder Captain Dan Pederson discusses how the pilot losses he witnessed in the Vietnam War led to the formation of Top Gun, how he and the other original "9 bros" got it up and running in just a matter of weeks with little or no funding, and what they looked for in new recruits.  He recalls the days before Top Gun when aerial combat training was banned by the military and how he and his fellow pilots learned their skills at a secret fight club in the sky off the coast of San Diego.  He talks about getting to train against real Russian MIG fighter jets at the most classified location in America, the mental and physical stamina required to perform the kind of aerial acrobatics taught at Top Gun, and the toll that it can take on a pilot’s personal life.  Plus Dan shares what the famous movie Top Gun gets wrong, he reveals the absolute worst weather to fly in, and he offers a few choice words about the Pentagon’s current reliance on the costly F-35 fighter jet.

Order Captain Dan Pederson's book TOP GUN: AN AMERICAN STORY on Amazon, Audible or wherever books are sold.  Please take our annual podcast listener survey and register to win a $100 Amazon gift card at www.podsurvey.com/kick.  Subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts and leave us a review, follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod, and visit our website at www.kickassnews.com.

Mar 5, 2019

Roger McNamee was a mentor to a young Mark Zuckerberg and an early investor in Facebook, but now he warns that the social media platform has become a threat to democracy, privacy, competition, and even public health.  He talks about when he noticed the first signs that not all was well at Facebook and what happened when he brought his concerns to his old friend.  He discusses the role that Facebook played in the 2016 election, how its algorithms are actually designed to polarize and spread disinformation, and how Russian trolls and companies like Cambridge Analytica were able to exploit those flaws.  Roger shares how Facebook employs tricks from psychology and slot machines to keep us coming back for more, and how you’re paying for the service with your personal data.

Order Roger McNamee's book Zucked: Waking Up to the Facebook Catastrophe on Amazon, Audible or wherever books are sold.  Today’s podcast sponsored by Brother INKestment printers, BetterHelp, and season 2 of Breach podcast. Please support the show by taking our annual listener survey at www.podsurvey.com/kick, and register to win a $100 Amazon gift card.   Subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts and leave us a review, follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod, and visit our website at www.kickassnews.com.

Feb 25, 2019

For 30 years, DEA special agent Jack Riley led the manhunt for the world’s most wanted drug-lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman.   He reveals how El Chapo cleverly wrangled the cocaine trade from the Columbian cartels, how he saw America’s growing opiod epidemic as an opportunity to branch out into meth and heroine, and how he managed to run a multi-billion dollar drug empire from a Mexican prison (until he escaped).  Jack discusses being on the dangerous front-lines of the war on drugs as head of the DEA’s El Paso, TX office, how it led to $100,000 price on his head, and what he learned about policing the border, how drugs get into America, and where they go from there.  He reveals how Guzman escaped capture so many times,  and how the Mexican government had to postpone a raid on his compound because of actor Sean Penn.  We talk about the recent El Chapo trial, the US opiod epidemic and what needs to be done to address it, criminal justice reform, Donald Trump’s wall, and Trump’s wild assertion that El Chapo put out a hit on him.

Order Jack Riley’s new book Drug Warrior: Inside the Hunt for El Chapo and the Rise of America's Opioid Crisis on Amazon, Audible or wherever books are sold.  Today’s podcast sponsored by Brother Printers INKvestment printer.  Please support the show by taking our annual listener survey at www.podsurvey.com/kick, and register to win a $100 Amazon gift card.   Please subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts and leave us a review, follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod, and visit our website at www.kickassnews.com.

Feb 22, 2019

France’s leading public intellectual Bernard-Henri Lévy accuses President Trump of following the same path of retreat begun by Barack Obama and suggests it has created a void that is now being filled by five old-world empires that are making an unlikely resurgence. Bernard-Henri talks about the Iran Nuclear deal and the larger problem of the Middle East, he discusses his long association with the Kurds who he says represent a hopeful new path for Islam, and he recalls his own role in the ouster of Muammar Gaddafi. He also gets into Russia’s election meddling and what he calls the assault on truth, why he worries that Brexit could lead to end of EU, and the rise of nationalism in his own country represented by the yellow vest protests.

Order his book The Empire and the Five Kings: America's Abdication and the Fate of the World on Amazon, Audible or wherever books are sold.  Please support the show by taking our annual listener survey at www.podsurvey.com/kick, and register to win a $100 Amazon gift card. Please subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts and leave us a review, follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod, and visit our website at www.kickassnews.com.

Feb 21, 2019

Parag Khanna says America has a China problem and the solution is Asia.  He suggests that rejoining the Trans-Pacific Partnership and building stronger ties with other countries in the region are much more effective and less risky ways to gain leverage over China than a direct trade war.  He reveals what President Trump gets wrong when he says that America holds all the cards with China, and suggests that Trump’s tariffs may actually hasten China’s push to become self-sufficient.  He talks about the booming markets emerging in other parts of Asia and how leading American tech companies are getting in on the game by signing major manufacturing agreements in place like India, South Korea, and Vietnam.  Parag also discusses the growing cultural influence represented by the hit movie Crazy Rich Asians and discusses a new trend of Asian-Americans crossing back over the Pacific to pursue opportunities as "American-Asians."

Order Parag Khanna's new book THE FUTURE IS ASIAN on Amazon or Audible, and follow him at ParagKhanna.com or on twitter at @ParagKhanna.  Today's episode was sponsored by Kronos and BetterHelp.  Subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts and rate and review the podcast.  Like Kickass News on Facebook and follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod.  For more interesting stuff, visit our website at www.kickassnews.com.

 

Feb 18, 2019

Legendary comedy writer and director Larry Charles (Seinfeld, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Borat) talks about traveling the world in search of humor in the most unusual, unexpected and deadliest places for his new Netflix series Larry Charles’ Dangerous World of Comedy.  He talks about meeting former child soldiers who perform standup in a cemetery in Liberia, the "Jon Stewart" of Iraq who has a price on his head, and the imprisoned terrorist who wanted to show Larry the lighter side of ISIS.  Larry also tells stories about working on the early seasons of Seinfeld, why Kramer was his favorite character to write for, and what he says Seinfeld has in common with Superman.  He shares how Larry David used to fight with audiences in comedy clubs, why David threw a fit when NBC wanted to move Seinfeld to the most coveted time slot in television, and what it’s like to direct Larry David on Curb Your Enthusiasm.  We discuss how Borat and Bruno exposed racist and authoritarian leanings in the US and abroad long before 2016, why Larry Charles had to play a character while he was directing those movies, and the crazy amount of commitment it required from that hilarious mad genius Sacha Baron Cohen.  Plus, what it was like to grow up in Brooklyn’s Trump Village (yes, that Trump!), how Larry went from selling drugs to selling jokes outside the Comedy Store in Hollywood, and the one country that scared the living hell out of him while making Larry Charles’ Dangerous World of Comedy

Watch all four episodes of Larry Charles’ Dangerous World of Comedy available on Netflix now.  Follow Larry on Twitter at @LarryCharlesisms.  Today's episode was sponsored by Brother INKvestment Tank Printers.  Subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts and rate and review the podcast.  Like Kickass News on Facebook and follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod.  For more interesting stuff, visit our website at www.kickassnews.com.

 

Feb 14, 2019

Former NJ Governor Chris Christie sets the record straight about his tenure as a corruption-busting prosecutor and a Republican running a Democratic state, as well as what really happened on the 2016 campaign trail and inside Trump Tower.  He recalls how his friendship with Donald Trump began and the nasty details of the infamous Charles Kushner case that would later come back to haunt him.  He talks about why he passed on running for President in 2012, Hurricane Sandy and that notorious Obama hug (which he says wasn’t really a hug), and how the Romney campaign used it as a scapegoat for their own candidate’s shortcomings.  Christie reveals that he even had to convince his own son that he had nothing to do with the George Washington Bridge closure and in the end it boiled down to stupid people doing stupid things.  I ask him if he thinks the Trump-Russia collusion may turn out to be a similar situation, he says he could tell General Mike Flynn was trouble from day one, he talks about his former colleagues Bob Mueller and James Comey, and he shares the advice he gave President Trump when the whole Russia investigation began.  He reveals why he believed he was going to be tapped as Trump’s running mate, how Jared Kushner tossed out the entire Trump transition plan just to get even with him, and the day he finally got fed up and said "I’m done."  Plus Chris Christie on how he became the first Youtube Governor, why he unfollowed every New Jersey reporter on Twitter, and why it took him 3 months to convince Donald Trump to cash his check.

Order Chris Christie's book Let Me Finish: Trump, the Kushners, Bannon, New Jersey, and the Power of In-Your-Face Politics on Amazon, Audible, or wherever books are sold.  Follow him on twitter at @ChrisChristie.  Today's episode was sponsored by BetterHelp.com.

Feb 11, 2019

Madeleine Albright fled fascists during her childhood and faced them down as Secretary of State, and today she comes on the podcast to warn that fascism is once again on the rise.  She shares how her own refugee experience during World War II and the Cold War shaped her worldview and recalls her meetings with with authoritarian strongmen like Kim Jong-il, Slobodan Milošević, and Vladimir Putin.  She reveals that most fascists come into office through democratic elections or a constitutional transfer of powers, not a bloody coup, and in her experience, dictators can be surprisingly normal and polite despite their monstrous cruelty.  She discusses the upcoming summit between Kim Jong-un and Donald Trump, says Putin plays a poor hand well and Trump plays a good hand poorly, and calls out Donald Trump as "the least democratic President in American history."

Order Madeleine Albright's book Fascism: A Warning on Amazon and follow her on twitter at @madeleine.  Today's episode was sponsored by BetterHelp.com.

Feb 7, 2019

Former AOL exec and chairman of National Geographic Society Jean Case talks about her new book Be Fearless: 5 Principles for a Life of Breakthroughs and Purpose.  She says leaders need to start viewing risk as R&D and failure as a learning experience.  In fact, Jean Case encourages people to talk about their own mistakes by sharing her own "failure resume" and hosting "fail tests."  She discusses why CEO’s need to get out of their bubble and get uncomfortable, and how greater diversity actually affects an organization's bottom line.  Plus she reveals the coolest thing about being the first female chairman of the National Geographic Society and talks about National Geographic’s history of fearless women going back over 125 years.

Order Jean's book Be Fearless: 5 Principles for a Life of Breakthroughs and Purpose on Amazon and learn more about the Case Foundation at www.casefoundation.org.  Today's episode was sponsored by Kronos Payroll Solutions, Blinkist, and Homesick Candles.

Feb 4, 2019

Encore.org founder Marc Freedman says seniors are an untapped resource and calls on society to stop segregating the elderly from society and renew the bond between young and old.  Marc talks about the mentors who influenced his life, what we can learn from the movie The Intern, and the evidence that shows that seniors who take an interest in a young person actually live longer, happier lives.  He talks about the elderly neighbors who act as "surrogate grandparents" to his own children, calls out the interests who are trying to pit baby boomers and millennials against each other, and reveals why artificial intelligence may create greater demand for the kind of interactions that only seniors can offer.  Plus we talk about the starry eyed dreamer who accidently created an "age apartheid," how Otto Von Bismark decided your retirement age, and why your kid’s next college roommate might be older than you are!

Be sure to visit Encore.org for more information and order Marc Freedman's book How to Live Forever: The Enduring Power of Connecting the Generations on Amazon, Audible, or wherever books are sold.  Today's podcast was sponsored by Homesick Candles.  Subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts, visit our website at www.kickassnews.com, and follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod.

Jan 31, 2019

Cliff Sims recalls his time as President Trump's Director of Messaging Strategy in a chaotic White House that he likens to "Game of Thrones with the cast of VEEP."  He shares the real story behind the fiasco around Trump’s inauguration numbers, how the administration takes disorganization to a whole new level, and how many times the President’s senior staff learn of about major policy decisions on cable news.  He recalls helping President Trump draft his notorious "enemies list," how he learned that Kelly Anne Conway was leaking to the press, and why he believes former WH Chief of Staff John Kelly had it in for him.  He discusses how he reconciles his own conservative evangelical values with the President’s less than Christian behavior, how he came to grips with the hard learned lesson that everyone is disposable to Donald Trump, and why he still respects the President even after Trump disavowed Sims and his book in typical Trump fashion - via an angry tweet.  Plus the Mooch is on loose, Sean Spicer needs a refrigerator, and the greatest mystery of all - Donald Trump’s hair!

Order his latest book Team of Vipers: My 500 Extraordinary Days in the Trump White House on Amazon, Audible, or wherever books are sold.  Today's podcast was sponsored by BetterHelp and Homesick Candles.  Subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts, visit our website at www.kickassnews.com, and follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod.

Jan 28, 2019

Science Communicator Professor Brian Cox reveals why he left a popular rock band for a career in particle physics, what he is learning through his participation in the ATLAS experiment at the Large Hadron Collider, and why he says the LHC has disproven the existence of ghosts.  He discusses Brexit, the vital link between democracy and science, and his concern over the growing education disparity.  He talks about walking in the footsteps of his hero Carl Sagan as a leading science communicator, the scientific concept that he has the hardest time explaining to non-scientists, and how the digital effects wizards behind the movie INTERSTELLAR are helping him elucidate the wonders of the universe in his spectacular new live show UNIVERSAL: ADVENTURES IN SPACE AND TIME.  Plus Brian says he's ready to call a truce in his ongoing feud with Deepak Chopra.

Visit www.profbriancoxlive.com for dates, tickets and information for Brian Cox's live tour UNIVERSAL: ADVENTURES IN SPACE AND TIME.  Subscribe to Brian’s podcast THE INFINITE MONKEY CAGE and follow him on twitter at @ProfBrianCox. Today's podcast was sponsored by Homesick Candles, Flatiron School, and Blinkist. Subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts, visit our website at www.kickassnews.com, and follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod.

Jan 24, 2019

Award-winning filmmaker Joe Berlinger (Brother's Keeper, The Paradise Lost trilogy) reexamines America's most notorious serial killer on the 30th anniversary of his execution in his new Netflix documentary Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes.  He discusses how one of Bundy’s first jobs gave him an inside view of the flaws in America’s law enforcement system, how Bundy exploited those weaknesses to his own devilish advantage,
and how it led to dramatic changes in how the FBI hunts serial killers and how state and local police share information.  We talk about how Ted Bundy’s clean cut good looks helped him elude capture, and the movie heart-throb who Joe Berlinger cast as Bundy in his new feature film Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile.  We talk about the media circus that turned Ted Bundy into a household name, the influence that the Bundy trial had on the true crime genre, and why Berlinger, known as the father of the true crime documentary, doesn’t actually like the term "true crime."

Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes is available on Netflix beginning January 24 and look for Joe's feature film Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile at the Sundance Film Festival this weekend and in theatres soon.  Keep up with Joe at www.joeberlinger.com or on Twitter at @JoeBerlinger.  Today's episode is sponsored by Betterhelp.  Subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts, visit our website at www.kickassnews.com, and follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod.

Jan 21, 2019

Dr. Phil McGraw says that some of his guests still surprise him even after 2000+ episodes of his #1 daytime talk show The Dr. Phil Show.  He recalls how losing a football game in junior high school inspired him to go into psychology, what it was like to go into practice with his father, and why he eventually decided to go from getting into the minds of his patients to getting into the minds of juries as a trial consultant.  He explains how that put him into contact with Oprah Winfrey, how he convinced her to move her entire TV operation to Amarillo, Texas for 3 months during the famous mad cow beef trial, and why he was initially hesitant when Oprah first invited him to come on her show.  He discusses his belief that problems are complex but solutions are often fairly simple, but he also says don’t be fooled by the magic of television and his easy going manner.  He says hours of research and peer review by America’s top doctors go into every single episode of The Dr. Phil Show.  He shares a little relationship advice from his 42 years of marriage, how his wife Robin is the "Dr Phil to Dr Phil" who always keeps him in check, and why Robin still sits in the audience of every taping of his show.  Then Dr Phil discusses how his new podcast Phil in the Blanks is a welcome chance to interview interesting people without the pressure of having to solve their problems, why he desperately wants to get O.J. Simpson on the show, and why he's planning to enter the popular true crime genre for his next project.  Plus why he never volunteers advice to his friends, what he would say if he was mediating the government shutdown negotiations, and he weighs in on the prospect of an Oprah for President campaign in 2020.

Subscribe to Dr. Phil's new podcast Phil in the Blanks
on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher or Spotify, and visit www.drphilintheblanks.com for more information and upcoming guests.  The Dr. Phil Show airs weekdays and you can go to www.drphil.com to find your local listings.  Follow Phil McGraw on Twitter at @DrPhil.  Today's episode is sponsored by Flatiron School.  Subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts, visit our website at www.kickassnews.com, and follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod.

Jan 17, 2019

A year ago, Dr. Steven Pinker's book Enlightenment Now made headlines for giving hard data that proved that the world is safer, happier, and freer than ever, but he was surprised by how many people just don't want to believe good news!  Today Dr. Pinker returns to the podcast to review the metrics of societal progress that continue to show that the world just keeps getting better, but he also discusses two areas that give him cause for concern.  Steven Pinker ponders whether the immigration debate might actually be a positive turning point as polls show that Americans are rejecting alternative facts and alarmism.  He reveals how genetics may play a part in our political preferences and explores how linguistics can make for more productive political discussions.  Dr. Pinker recalls growing up during the turbulent 60’s in Montreal and how he went from a teenage anarchist to a leading proponent of science, reason, humanism, and progress.  Plus we discuss his ongoing fight against political correctness, why we need to stop giving words too much power, and why he says those baby boomers who say millenials are a generation of snowflakes have no one but themselves.

Order his latest book Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress on Amazon, Audible, or wherever books are sold.  Keep up with him on Twitter at @sapinker or at www.stevenpinker.com.  Today's podcast was sponsored by Blinkist.  Subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts, visit our website at www.kickassnews.com, and follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod.

Jan 14, 2019

Howie Mandel talks about making his first comedy special in 20 years, his childhood growing up in Toronto, and how the show Candid Camera inspired him to pull an elaborate prank that got him expelled form high school. He shares how "winging it" the first time he want on stage turned into his signature improvisational style, and how he still finds much of his comedic inspiration from interacting with his audience.  He recalls opening for Diana Ross in Vegas, his very first TONIGHT SHOW appearance, how the HBO YOUNG COMEDIANS SPECIAL changed his life, and the time when a sitcom audition led to his getting cast in the serious TV medical drama SAINT ELSEWHERE. Howie reveals why he originally turned down the offer to host DEAL OR NO DEAL and the anxiety he gets whenever he sees contestants making bad decisions on the show.  He opens up about his struggle with obsessive compulsive disorder, and how he went from fearing that it might be a career killer to using his fame to raise awareness of mental health issues.  Plus Howie Mandel gives the secret to winning the golden buzzer on AMERICA'S GOT TALENT.

Howie's new comedy special HOWIE MANDEL PRESENTS HOWIE MANDEL AT THE HOWIE MANDEL COMEDY CLUB this Friday Jan 18 at 10PM E/P on Showtime.  DEAL OR NO DEAL airs Wednesdays at 9AM ET on CNBC and AGT: CHAMPIONS airs Mondays on NBC at 8PM ET.  Follow Howie on Twitter at @HowieMandel.  Today's episode is sponsored by Flatiron School and Hackable podcast.  Subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts, visit our website at www.kickassnews.com, and follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod.

Jan 10, 2019

Abbi Jacobson opens up about the frustrations of TV development hell, playing “herself” on Comedy Central’s Broad City, and being a woman in a position of power.  She discusses her ongoing struggle with work-life balance, how it took a book deal just to make her take 3 weeks off to travel the country and get over a broken heart, and how that trip taught her that “the things we’re most afraid of, are the things that will most change us.”  Abbi reveals how she and co-creator Ilana Wexler got Amy Poehler to champion Broad City for television, how they convinced Hillary Clinton to guest star in the middle of the election, and what you can learn about a TV network from the snack selection in the lobby.  Plus Abbi Jacobson talks aura readings in Sedona, feeling a little out of place at a Mormon lodge in Utah, and why a bed and breakfast is the worst place to go when you just want to be alone!

Order Abbi's new book I Might Regret This: Essays, Drawings, Vulnerabilities, and Other Stuff on Amazon or wherever books are sold.  Keep up with Abbi on Twitter at @AbbiJacobson, and don’t miss the final season of Broad City beginning January 24 on Comedy Central.  Subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts, visit our website at www.kickassnews.com, and follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod.

Jan 7, 2019

Brad Meltzer is the #1 bestselling author of political thrillers like The Escape Artist and The Inner Circle.  Today he talks about making his first foray into nonfiction for his latest book The First Conspiracy: The Secret Plot to Kill George Washington, all the research that went into it, and his initial concern that a long forgotten rumor of a secret plot to assassinate America’s founding father might turn out to be just that - a rumor.  He tells the story of America’s "other Benedict Arnold" and the deadly conspiracy by some of the very men charged with protecting George Washington’s life.  He reveals how the incident gave birth to American counterintelligence, why Washington wasted no time in making an example of one of the traitor, and why there was a deliberate effort to cover-up the plot to kill Washington for more than 240 years.  Plus he shares some of the wild conspiracy theories he hears from his fans at book signings, his alarm over the explosion of conspiracy thinking and paranoia in American politics, and a few memories of his friend the late President George H.W. Bush.

Order THE FIRST CONSPIRACY: The Secret Plot to Kill George Washington on Amazon or wherever books are sold.  Keep up with Brad at BradMeltzer.com or on twitter at @BradMeltzer.  Subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts, visit our website at www.kickassnews.com, and follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod.

Jan 3, 2019

Actor Bill Murray (Lost in Translation, Rushmore) discusses how his music and poetry album New Worlds evolved out of a chance meeting with classical cellist Jan Vogler on a flight from Berlin to NYC. Plus, Bill Murray shares his philosophy of life, his favorite American humorists, and his thoughts on being an internet folk hero.

New Worlds is available on iTunes, Amazon, Spotify, or wherever you buy music.  Please subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts and visit www.kickassnews.com for more fun stuff.

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