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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: Category: affairs
Aug 22, 2019

This is a rebroadcast of an interview with former Secretary of State George Shultz that originally aired January 19, 2018.  Secretary Shultz recalls his close friendship with President Ronald Reagan, the moment he realized that Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev was someone the U.S. could do business with, and Reagan's Pershing missile moment as a masterclass in peace through strength.  He suggests that President Trump may soon need to have a "Pershing moment" of his own, reveals what he learned in a meeting years ago with a young Vladimir Putin, and weighs in as an economist on the Trump tax reform act.  Plus George Shultz discusses why Ronald Reagan never bluffed, why foreign policy is a lot like gardening, and why the prospect of nuclear war still keeps him up at night.

George Shultz is a fellow at Stanford University's Hoover Institution and you can read some of his articles at www.hoover.org.  

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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.

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Sep 3, 2018

Ambassador Wendy Sherman was the lead negotiator on the Iran Nuclear Agreement, and she writes about it in her new book titled Not for the Faint of Heart: Lessons in Courage, Power, and Persistence.  Today she recalls working with Secretary of State Madeleine Albright to halt North Korea’s nuclear ambitions in the 90’s, and how they came close to an agreement only to see their efforts derailed by the chaos of the 2000 election.  She explains why negotiating with North Korea is always "one part diplomacy and one part absurdity," she recalls her personal interactions with Kim Jung Il, and weighs in on how his successor Kim Jung Un measures up.  Ambassador Sherman talks about the many months of diplomacy (both covert and overt) that went into the nuclear agreement with Iran, how much was lost when President Trump decertified the deal, and what her colleagues from across the negotiating table are saying about it.  She explains why the negotiation was a lot like solving a Rubik’s Cube, just how heated things got in the behind closed doors, and why sometimes tactics are no substitute for pure raw human emotion.

Order Ambassador Wendy Sherman's book Not for the Faint of Heart: Lessons in Courage, Power, and Persistence is available on Amazon, Audible, or wherever books are sold.  Follow Ambassador Sherman on Twitter at @WendyRSherman.  Today's podcast is sponsored by Heineken, NFL Podcasts, and ZipRecruiter.

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Aug 6, 2018

Journalist Michael Scott Moore went to Somalia to write an article about Somali pirates only be kidnapped and held hostage for 977 days as his mother tried to come up with his ransom.  He discusses his captivity, his one daring escape attempt, and how he didn’t even believe it when he was finally released.  He discusses how pirates use the media to drive up their ransom demands, their shocking naiveté about America, and how the man known as the Somali pirate kingpin didn't even know about US policy against paying for hostages.  He shares how one of his guards rationalized being a muslim and a pirate, why the supposed ideological motives for Somali piracy are b.s., and the strange fate that befell his pirate captors after he left.

Order Michael Scott Moore's book The Desert and the Sea: 977 Days Captive on the Somali Pirate Coast on Amazon or Audible.  Visit his website at www.radiofreemike.net and follow him on twitter at @MichaelSctMoore.  Today's podcast is sponsored by Monster Espresso and GooglePlay.

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Jun 18, 2018

Ambassador Michael McFaul helped President Obama craft the US-Russia “reset," and he later had a front-row seat for the end of the reset with the return of the hostile, paranoid Russian President Vladimir Putin.  He recalls witnessing history unfold during the attempted Russian military coup in 1989 and early encounter with a young unimpressive Vladimir Putin in the 90s.  He gives an insiders account of being with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton when she presented the infamous "reset" button, the first meeting between Putin and the newly elected President Obama, and his own thoughts on what motivates the Russian President.  He talks about arriving to protestors in Moscow on his first day as Ambassador, the Russian FSB’s sinister surveillance and harassment campaigns against him and his family, and the extensive efforts to gain Kompromat on US officials as well as certain wealthy American businessmen.

Order From Cold War to Hot Peace: An American Ambassador in Putin’s Russia on Amazon or Audible. Follow Michael McFaul twitter at @mcfaul or at www.michaelmcfaul.com.  Today’s podcast was sponsored by Michelin Premiere Tires, Just for Men Control GX, and Travel Guard Travel Insurance.

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Jan 22, 2018

Former Secretary of State George Shultz recalls his close friendship with President Ronald Reagan, the moment he realized that Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev was someone the U.S. could do business with, and Reagan's Pershing missile moment as a masterclass in peace through strength.  He suggests that President Trump may soon need to have a "Pershing moment" of his own, reveals what he learned in a meeting years ago with a young Vladimir Putin, and weighs in as an economist on the Trump tax reform act.  Plus George Shultz discusses why Ronald Reagan never bluffed, why foreign policy is a lot like gardening, and why the prospect of nuclear war still keeps him up at night.

George Shultz is a fellow at Stanford University's Hoover Institution and you can read some of his articles at www.hoover.org.  Today's episode was sponsored by Credit Karma and The Art of Charm podcast.

See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

May 16, 2016

My guest is Paul Wolfowitz, former President of the World Bank, Deputy Secretary of Defense, and Ambassador to Indonesia.  Today the world’s most famous neoconservative will tell us why he doesn’t like the term neocon.  He'll talk about how his hatred of dictators and the teachings of Leo Strauss have shaped his own political philosophy, and how that has led to a lifelong passion for promoting freedom and combatting corruption as the first step to ending global poverty and preventing wars.  Ambassador Wolfowitz will discuss both U.S. conflicts in Iraq and how Saddam Hussein's cynical manipulation of Iraqi Islamists may have inadvertently lead to ISIS.  He will discuss his time as Ambassador to Indonesia and how that country might be a good template for democracy and reform in the Muslim world.  He’ll share some great advice he once got from Secretary of State George Schultz and voice his concerns over the Iran nuclear deal and North Korean missile tests.  

Special thanks to the Milken Institute for hosting this interview during the 2016 Milken Global Conference. Visit www.milkeninstitute.org to learn more.  If you enjoyed today’s episode, then you can keep up with Paul Wolfowitz's work and writings at www.aei.org.  You can also follow the American Enterprise Institute on Twitter at @AEI.

Please subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts and follow us on Facebook at Kickass News or on Twitter at @KickassNewsPod.  You can also visit www.kickassnews.com for more fun stuff.

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