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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: america
Feb 13, 2020

Historian Doris Kearns Goodwin talks about executive producing the History Channel miniseries Washington, some things she’s observed from watching Steven Spielberg on the set of Lincoln, and how the collaborative process of making Washington helped her through her husband's death.  She discuss why she wanted to go beyond the highlights of George Washington’s life to explore the real man, and she debunks and confirms some common legends about our founding father.  Doris reveals the long held personal grudge that led George Washington to join the American Revolution, the intense ambition that drove him to succeed, and how owning and exploiting slaves became essential to that success.

The three night television event Washington begins Sunday February 16 at 8PM E/P on The History Channel.  Today's episode was sponsored by Wave and Kronos.

 

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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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Dec 6, 2018

Historian H.W. Brands discusses his new book Heirs of the Founders: The Epic Rivalry of Henry Clay, John Calhoun and Daniel Webster, the Second Generation of American Giants.  Professor Brands talks about how these three political giants crafted the Compromise of 1850 which barely held the Union together, why none of these three men was ever elected President, and how compromise went from being politics at its finest to a dirty word in today’s Washington.  He discusses John Calhoun’s beliefs that slavery was a moral virtue and that states had the right to nullify any federal law, and he says that the moralizing of abolitionists like Daniel Webster actually drove Calhoun to take an increasingly more extreme position on slavery.  He recalls Webster's legendary oratory skills in the days when eloquence was a ticket to political fame, and how one of Webster’s speeches once brought the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court to tears.  Then he shares how Henry Clay earned the nickname "the great compromiser" by playing referee between Webster and Calhoun, and why Clay believed that the South would eventually outgrow slavery if he could just postpone a civil war long enough.

Order his new book Heirs of the Founders: The Epic Rivalry of Henry Clay, John Calhoun and Daniel Webster, the Second Generation of American Giants on Amazon, Audible or wherever books are sold and follow him on twitter at @hwbrands.  Today's episode was sponsored by The Flatiron School.  Visit Kickass News at www.kickassnews.com, subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts, and follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod.

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Nov 29, 2018

David Priess returns to deliver a colorful political history of the schemes, maneuvers, and conspiracies that have attempted to remove unwanted presidents.  He discusses the various President’s who’ve died in office of natural and unnatural causes including two President’s who some suspect may have been poisoned and a bizarre conspiracy by a cabal of wealthy businessman to overthrow President Franklin Roosevelt.  He explains the 25th Amendment which allows for the President’s Cabinet and Congress to declare a leader physically or mentally unfit to serve, the two Presidents who played instrumental roles in crafting it, and the closest we ever came to using it.  He walks us through the surprising history of Presidential mental illness and why some of Richard Nixon’s closest advisors questioned whether he was mentally stable.  We talk about the process of impeachment, when Presidential lies rise the level of a "high crime or misdemeanor," and whether he thinks Congress could realistically impeach President Trump.  Plus, the man who served as the daily intelligence briefer to former FBI director Robert Mueller weighs in on the Russia investigation, what might be going through Mueller's mind right now, and what we can expect as the investigation winds toward a conclusion.

Order David Priess's book How to Get Rid of a President: History's Guide to Removing Unpopular, Unable, or Unfit Chief Executives on Amazon, Audible or wherever books are sold.  Keep up with David at www.lawfareblog.com/contributors/dpriess or on twitter at @DavidPriess.  Today's episode was sponsored by The Flatiron School.  Visit Kickass News at www.kickassnews.com, subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts, and follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod.

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Oct 29, 2018

Senator Ben Sasse does a deep dive into the societal shifts affecting modern American life and the roots of our political divisiveness.  He talk about the outsized role politics plays in our daily lives, how "polititainment" celebrities like Sean Hannity are fueling dangerous tribalism in America, and how to build a healthier tribe of family and friends instead of political outrage.  He shares recent data that indicates that Americans are feeling increasingly lonely, and explains how the digital economy and smart technology are leading us to pull up our roots and lose our sense of community.  He then reveals how his own family has embraced the idea of a "digital Sabbath" and shares a few of his favorite tips for unplugging and living in the moment.  Plus I ask Senator Ben Sasse if he’s still comfortable with a GOP that seems to be remaking itself in President Trump's image and what would it take for Senator Sasse to challenge Trump for the nomination in 2020.

Order Senator Ben Sasse's important new book Them: Why We Hate Each Other--and How to Heal on Amazon, Audible or wherever books are sold, and follow him on twitter at @SenSasse.  Today's episode was sponsored by Heineken and National Security Agency Career Recruitment.  Visit Kickass News at www.kickassnews.com, subscribe to Kickass News on Apple Podcasts, and follow us on twitter at @KickassNewsPod.

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May 3, 2018

For six years, journalist Vegas Tenold embedded himself among the members of three of America's most ideologically extreme white nationalist groups including the KKK, neonazis, and the Traditionalist Workers Party.  He reveals how this self-described Norwegian socialist managed to gain access to some of the worst hate groups in America, and why he says the most dangerous groups aren’t the KKK or neonazis, but a new class of well organized activists seeking to take their hateful ideology mainstream.  He recalls covering the notorious Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville  and explains why law enforcement was partly to blame for the violence.  He talks about some of the dog whistles that politicians use to signal fidelity with white nationalists, his experience watching the 2016 election returns with the head of the Traditionalist Workers Party, and why he says these groups are ultimately doomed to fail.  Plus the dangers of being a bald white Norwegian at a skinhead rally.

Order Everything You Love Will Burn: Inside the Rebirth of White Nationalism in America on Amazon or Audible and follow Vegas Tenold on twitter at @vegastenold.  Today's episode was sponsored by Everquote, Grasshopper, and Zyppah

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