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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: March, 2019
Mar 28, 2019

Stacey Abrams has become a political superstar since running for governor of Georgia in 2018 and delivering the Democratic response to President Trump's State of the Union this February.  We talk about her private meeting with Joe Biden, the rumors of a Biden-Abrams ticket in 2020, and what issues she’d campaign on if she does run for national office.  She discusses making history as Georgia House Minority Leader and her party’s nominee for governor, why she refused to concede defeat in the 2018 gubernatorial race, and why she believes widespread voter suppression tipped that election to her opponent.  She explains the careful balancing act of being a woman of color in a position of power, why minority politicians undergo way more financial scrutiny than their white colleagues, and how the Republican Governors Association mocked her for daring to seek higher office as a woman.  Stacey also admits to being a Star Trek: Next Generation "super-fan" and reveals what the show can teach us about outsider politics.  She shares her personal philosophy of "work-life jenga," talks about moonlighting as a successful romance novelist, and opens up about finally making time for dating and romance in her own life.

Order Stacey Abrams' new book Lead from the Outside:
How to Build Your Future and Make Real Change on Amazon, Audible or wherever books are sold.  Learn more about Stacey’s voting rights group Fair Fight Action at www.fairfightaction.com,
and follow her on twitter at @staceyabrams.  Today's podcast was sponsored by The Rochester Institute of Technology and Brother INKvestment printers.  Please subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts and leave us a review, follow us on Twitter at @KickassNewsPod, and take our short listeners survey at www.podsurvey.com/kick.

Mar 25, 2019

 

 

Jeff Bridges discusses his 6 decades in Hollywood and what he learned about acting from dad Lloyd Bridges.  He recalls the "Little Rascals" version of Tucker that he and Francis Ford Coppola made prior to filming, laughing it up with Robin Williams and Terry Gilliam on the set of The Fisher King, and how he and his brother Beau tested each other in The Fabulous Baker Boys.  He shares stories about making The Last Picture Show, King Kong, Heaven's Gate, The Contender, and True Grit.  He talks about his Big Lebowski fandom, how he feels about being identified with his iconic character "the Dude," and why he says the Dude is a zenmaster.  Then Jeff Bridges gets zen about the environment with his new documentary Living in the Future's Past.  He discusses how we can take a more global approach to climate change, explains the evolutionary roots of our energy consumption, and says humans collectively form a super-organism that is exhausting resources at a faster and faster pace.  He calls for the removal of politics from the climate debate and suggests how everyone can make individual changes that can have a big impact.

Keep up with Jeff at www.jeffbridges.com and be sure to catch his film Living in the Future's Past.  This podcast was sponsored by Heineken and Espresso Monster.  Visit Kickass News at www.kickassnews.com, subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts, and follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod.

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.

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