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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: July, 2019
Jul 29, 2019

Diallo Riddle and and Bashir Salahuddin channeled their nostalgia musical variety shows like SoulTrain and Solid Gold into a hilarious new parody series Sherman's Showcase on IFC.  They reveal how they lured artists like John Legend to the show and why all musicians are secretly aspiring comedians.  They recall drinking with Lorne Michaels, writing sketches for Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, and how Sherman's Showcase gave them an opportunity to do all the sketches that were too risky for network television.  They reminisce meeting at Harvard, starting their own sketch group just to get better parts, and being on the ground floor of the Youtube comedy boom.  Plus Frederick Douglass sells hair products!

Watch Sherman's Showcase starting Wednesday, July 31st at 10PM ET on IFC, and also be sure to catch Bashir and Diallo's other new show South Side on Comedy Central.  Visit www.ifc.com for more fun stuff about Sherman's Showcase, and follow Diallo Riddle on Twitter at @diallo.

 

Jul 25, 2019

Richard A. Clarke and Robert K. Knake have served as the top cyber security experts to three Presidents, and they discuss their new book The Fifth Domain: Defending Our Country, Our Companies, and Ourselves in the Age of Cyber Threats.  They discuss Russia’s interference in the 2016 election and say that Russia will almost certainly try it again in 2020.  They warn against the folly of continuing to allow local state bureaucrats to ensure the integrity of America’s electronic voting machines and suggest that Russia’s 2015 shutdown of Ukraine’s power grid might have been a dry run for a similar attack on the grid here in the US.  Clarke predicts that the next war that America enters will likely be triggered by a cyber attack.  They discuss the offensive and defensive potential of new technology like artificial intelligence, quantum computing, and 5G.  They advocate for private companies to take greater ownership of their own data security instead expecting the government to protect them from attacks.  Plus they offer a few steps that every listener should take to protect themselves from cyber crime.

Order The Fifth Domain: Defending Our Country, Our Companies, and Ourselves in the Age of Cyber Threats on Amazon, Audible or wherever books are sold.  This episode is sponsored by Bank of America’s The Academy for Consumer and Small Business and Capella University's Doctoral Degree Program.

Jul 22, 2019

#1 Bestselling spy novelist Daniel Silva's books closely mirror world events, and he reveals how the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi led him to toss out 250 pages of his latest novel and start over.  The New Girl is the 19th book in his wildly successful Gabriel Allon series, and he says he never imagined that his most popular character would last more than one book.  Daniel discusses the similarities and differences between his fictional Saudi Prince and the brutal Mohammed bin Salman and why he believes that Russia may have had something to do with President Trump’s decision to give bin Salman a pass on the Khashoggi murder.  Daniel recalls his start as a journalist working at CNN in the early days of 24-hour news, being there the night when the network brought Operation Desert Storm into America’s living rooms, and meeting his wife and fellow journalist Jamie Gangel during the Iran-Iraq War.  Plus Daniel talks about his unique writing process, his fascination with art restoration, and more. 

Order Daniel Silva's latest thrilling novel The New Girl on Amazon, Audible or wherever books are sold.  Visit his website at www.danielsilvabooks.com and follow him on Twitter at @DanielSilvaBook.  This episode is sponsored by TruGreen Mosquito Defense.

Jul 18, 2019

Joy-Ann Reid is the host of MSNBC's A.M. Joy and she discusses her new book The Man Who Sold America: Trump and the Unraveling of the American Story.  She says only a New Yorker who lived in the city during the turbulent 70s and 80s can truly understand the rise of Donald Trump.  She likens that era to the lawlessness of Gotham City, and says that if NYC is Gotham than Trump is the Joker sowing chaos at every opportunity.  She tells the story of her parents' immigration from Guinea and the Democratic Republic of the Congo and suggests that America could learn something about healing racial divides from post-Apartheid South Africa.  Looking ahead to 2020, Joy believes that unregistered voters are a potential goldmine for Democrats.  She explains that the hungriest constituencies win elections and women will be very hungry this time.  Plus she weighs in the first Democratic debate, shares her daughter's nickname for Beto O’Rourke, and predicts that 2020 will be the craziest election yet!

Order Joy's book The Man Who Sold America: Trump and the Unraveling of the American Story on Amazon, Audible or whever books are sold.  Watch her show A.M. Joy on Saturdays and Sundays at 10am Eastern on MSNBC and follow her on twitter at @JoyAnnReid.  This episode is sponsored by Anchor.  Anchor is a Spotify-owned company that makes it easy for anyone to make a podcast, for free.  Get started at www.anchor.fm/kickassnews.

Jul 15, 2019

Silicon Valley icon Guy Kawasaki recalls his childhood in Hawaii, his start in the jewelry business, and how his skills at jewelry sales came in surprisingly handy when he became chief evangelist for Macintosh. He talks about personally witnessing the genius and dark side of Apple founder Steve Jobs, he shares some rules that he calls "the Gospel According to Steve," and opens up about the argument that led him to quit Apple in the 90s.  He talks about honor and honesty in the tech industry, his litmus test for doing business with someone, and why many of his best deals are done on a handshake.  He shares plenty of of sage marketing advice including what he calls "Guy’s Golden Rule" and gives me a crash course in how to be a social media influencer without letting it dominate your life.  Plus Guy discusses the costly mistake Hillary Clinton made with her Silicon Valley supporters, a cost/benefit analysis of standing up to Donald Trump, and the two asian celebrities for whom Guy always gets mistaken!

Order Guy Kawasaki's book WISE GUY: LESSONS FROM A LIFE on Amazon, Audible, and wherever books are sold.  Keep up with him at www.guykawasaki.com, like him on Facebook, and follow him on Twitter at @GuyKawasaki.  Special thanks to Live Talks LA for hosting our interview.  Visit www.livetalksla.org to learn more about their terrific line-up of speakers coming up including Malcolm Gladwell, George Will, and many more.  Today's episode was sponsored by Kronos and Ben & Jerry's.

Jul 11, 2019

In the President's campaign against what he calls “Fake News,”
CNN’s Chief White House Correspondent Jim Acosta has become public enemy number one, but Acosta warns that Trump's attacks on the press could have dangerous consequences for America.  Jim reveals some of the tricks that the White House uses to skew media coverage and avoid tough questions, and he says that the President’s war on the truth is changing journalism itself as reporters have to do double-duty as "real-time fact-checkers."  He shares some of the bone-chilling threats he receives from Trump supporters at rallies and on social media, and reports that hateful anti-media rhetoric only got worse in the 2018 midterms.  He suggest that Trump actually enjoys sparring with him in the press room and that the President only demonizes the press as part of an "act" to placate his base.  He even says he's figured out Trump's "tells" for when he's lying or losing!

Order Jim Acosta's book The Enemy of the People: A Dangerous time to Tell Truth in America on Amazon, Audible and wherever books are sold.  Follow him on Twitter at @Acosta and see him reporting from the White House on CNN.  Today's episode was sponsored by the TruGreen Mosquito Defense and BetterHelp.

Jul 8, 2019

Adam Savage (Mythbusters, MythBusters Junior) talks about building a working prototype of Marvel’s Iron Man suit for his new series Savage Builds and what it was like to fly around with tiny jet engines strapped to his forearms.  He discusses how Oscar-winning director Peter Jackson helped him take to the skies in a real World War I dogfight, why Adam's attempt recreate one of World War II’s most bizarre contraptions was less than successful, and how it served as a lesson in the importance of embracing your failures.  Adam talks about his love of juggling and magic, his friendship with magician and skeptic the Amazing Randy, his own relationship with the skeptic community, and how he discovered that Darwinism doesn’t make for good television.  Plus Adam talks about obsession with the dodo bird and why wire coat hangers are a maker's best friend.

Adam's new series Savage Builds airs Fridays at 10 Eastern on the Science Channel.  Visit Adam at www.adamsavage.com for more fun stuff and follow him on twitter at @donttrythis.  Today's episode was sponsored by the Life Is Good Ping Podcast.

Jul 4, 2019

Today's episode is a rerun of a previous podcast that aired December 3, 2018 with guest Trevor Noah.  Trevor talks about his  standup special TREVOR NOAH: SON OF PATRICIA and why he dedicated it to his mom whom he calls “the first comedian that he ever saw” and “most gangster human being you’ll ever meet in your life.”  He discusses growing up in South Africa during Apartheid, the power of humor to fight oppression, and why he believes that hateful words aren’t nearly as important as addressing with the hate itself.  He shares how the 2016 election affected his own vision for THE DAILY SHOW, why the current President reminds him of certain African dictators, and how he deciphers what’s news and what’s nonsense in the age of Trump.  Plus Trevor talks about interviewing President Barak Obama, whether he would be down to do the same with Donald Trump, and the question that he would most like ask the 45th President.

Watch THE DAILY SHOW WITH TREVOR NOAH every weeknight at 11PM ET on Comedy Central.  Visit www.trevornoah.com for more on Trevor including upcoming tour dates, and follow him on twitter at @TrevorNoah.  Visit Kickass News at www.kickassnews.com, subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts, and follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod.

Jul 1, 2019

Pulitzer Prize-winning Conservative columnist George Will answers the fundamental question “what is it that conservatives mean to conserve" and suggests that modern conservatives are losing sight of that purpose.  He extolls James Madison’s belief in the importance of natural rights and government’s role in protecting them, and he makes that case against his fellow Princetonian Woodrow Wilson who did the most to unravel the Founders’ vision.  George discusses his decision to change his political affiliation from Republican to Independent in 2016,
why he still can’t make the leap to the Libertarian Party, and why he believes it would be better to vote for Joe Biden over Donald Trump in 2020.

Order George Will's book The Conservative Sensibility on Amazon, Audible or wherever books are sold.  Follow him on Twitter at @GeorgeWill and look for his regular column in the Washington Post.  Today's podcast was sponsored by BetterHelp and Ben & Jerry's.

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