Midwest Real
Midwest Real is a podcast and website that provides uncut, organic conversations and articles that cover creatives, big questions and mind expanding ideas. EST. 12/21/2012 in Milwaukee.

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All comedy is not created equal.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m always ready for (and often partaking in) some cheap chuckles facilitated by potty humor, but I have a deeper appreciation for the type of biting satire and commentary that actually opens your mind, forcing you to think whilst giggling.  

 

I’m no expert on the history of comedy, but there seems to be something more poignant stirring in the hearts of (some of) today’s comedians.  Maybe it was all made possible by trail-blazers like George Carlin and Bill Hicks.  Or, perhaps it’s a natural byproduct of the unbelievably troubled, yet amazing moment in history we dwell within.  Whatever the case, thank god for today’s satirists.  Their craft provides a truly valuable, yet digestible context for the crazy, revolution-ridden times we’re living in today. 

 

Lee Camp is a part of this silver-tongued coterie of counterculture comedians.  In his early days behind the mic, he was doing just fine for himself with more traditional material, but as he woke up to the injustice and hypocrisy running through society, he just couldn’t keep his mouth shut.  Lee now puts out a razor-sharp weekly rant dubbed “Moment of Clarity,” via his YouTube channel, which boasts tens of thousands of subscribers.  

 

 

Keep up with Lee through his websiteTwitterFacebook and over at disinfo.com.  

 

Join the thousands who already support Midwest Real. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook and don’t forget to subscribe and review on iTunes!

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Direct download: leecamp_-_4914_9.02_PM.mp3
Category:culture -- posted at: 2:53 AM

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This bag of meat we drive around sure is complicated.  We’ve had millions of years to figure it out, yet we still don’t know all the ins and outs of caring for this body we’ve got.  To make matters worse, it seems like every week there’s some new piece of medical or nutritional research that contradicts a long-held truth about what it is means to be healthy- Fat has gone from bad to good.  Many grains have gone from the cornerstone of a healthy diet, to something you should probably NEVER eat.  It almost seems like we have no idea what we're doing. 

 

Of course, there’s a whole host of hugely important factors beyond nutrition like sleep, lifestyle, relationships, genetics, environment and roughly a million more things.  But, who has time to worry about all of that?  If there’s not a pill that fixes it, it’s probably too much trouble for the majority of us an our equally jiggly neighbors.

   

Dave Asprey himself was among the pilled-up, overweight, misguided masses for many years.  But, all that changed when he began hacking his body, treating it as if it were a computer.  He spent over 300 thousand dollars trying everything he could get his hands on and some of it really worked.  Dave began reporting his findings and recommendations in his now wildly successful blog.  He's since branched out further with his own line of human optimization products

 

The ever-dashing Former MMA fighter, fitness expert and all around scary (but nice) dude, Adam Von Rothfelder also joined me in hosting this show.  If you’re in the Milwaukee area, go check out his amazing gym, Drench Fitness

 

 

Dave really covers all the major bases in this talk- nutrition, sleep hacking, smart drugs, recent controversies and even his own personal experiences with smart drugs and learning disabilities.

Join the thousands who already support Midwest Real. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook and don’t forget to subscribe and review on Itunes!

P.S.-You can now tip the show in Bitcoin!

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Direct download: Aspreyedit_-_32814_4.52_PM.mp3
Category:culture -- posted at: 5:09 AM

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 Life can be a bastard.  It has a way of sucker-punching you in the nethers just when you least expect it, leaving you confused and scrambling for answers.  Life gets nasty, period.  Death, disease and trauma don’t wait until you’ve fortified yourself with a daily meditation routine, or had some sort of life-affirming existential breakthrough.  Most of us learn this truth the hard way- in lieu of a personal, transcendent experience that no one can take away, philosophies and religious creeds often amount to squat when life gets dark. 

Enter Gabriel D. Roberts.  Raised a fundamentalist Christian, Gabriel’s religious identity was well-defined and static for decades.  But, intelligence and dogma have a way of repelling one another, and by his late twenties he rejected spirituality completely.  What followed, was an ugly period for Gabriel.  He devoted himself to more materialistic endeavors, all while self-medicating with harmful substances. Eventually, after finding his own transcendent experience, he was able to right his ship.  He has now devoted his life to spreading his story of awakening to others in hopes that they might make contact with their own, personal spiritual truth. 

Gabriel’s third book, The Quest for Gnosis will be released wherever digital books are sold on March 20.  For more information, check out his website and give him plenty of digital smooches via his Facebook and Twitter accounts.

Join the thousands who already support Midwest Real. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook and don’t forget to subscribe and review on Itunes!

P.S.-You can now tip the show in Bitcoin!

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Direct download: GDRfinal2.mp3
Category:culture -- posted at: 9:13 PM

Bitcoin is immortal, so you might as well embrace it.

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New technologies almost always follow a predictable pattern.  They start off exclusive, expensive and as something that grants power to a privileged few, all while some lucky nerd sits atop an ever-growing pile of money at the top of the pyramid.  But eventually, those very same pieces of innovation become cheap, ubiquitous and totally standard until they’re replaced by the next big thing.  It’s happened so many times in the last couple of decades that it almost seems like a requirement.  But every now and then, something so disruptive and novel comes along that it transcends all convention- The PC, the Internet, email, cellular phones Napster- the list goes on.  Will the next addition to that list be Bitcoin?

Spoiler: yes.

In just a few years, Bitcoin went from a thought-provoking paper, to some clever coding worth a fraction of a penny, to “nerd money,” to disruptive technology worth billions, to the number one consumer of raw computing power in the entire world; 256 times more than the world’s top 500 super computers combinedEven more than porn.  Yes, seriously.  This has given rise to a guerrilla economy that circumvents the need for any traditional fiat currency. Sure, you can buy with it, invest in it, sell it, trade it and speculate about its future until your eyes bleed, but that’s far less exciting than the community that has sprung up around it.

Bitcoin is not just a defiant, decentralized currency.  It has spawned a tangible, global movement of the most potent sort- smart, tech savvy, passionate, highly engaged and young. Every day, people gather by the thousands to discuss, teach, create and philosophize around it and in just a couple of years, this community has accomplished a considerable amount.  They’ve given birth to new businesses, technologies and dozens of crypto-currencies.  But, that’s just the tip of the ice burg.

Join Chris Ellis, Will Pangman and myself as we dig oh so much deeper in this episode.

Chris Ellis is one of the driving forces behind the crypto-currency, Feathercoin.  He’s also a Bitcoin enthusiast and expert who has spoken extensively on the subject.

Will Pangman has gone from an entrepreneur with a Bitcoin hobby, to a local authority on the subject here in Milwaukee. He appears regularly on the Let's Talk Bitcoin podcast.

Join the thousands who already support Midwest Real. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook and don’t forget to subscribe and review on Itunes!

P.S.-You can now tip the show in Bitcoin!

 

Direct download: bitcoin.mp3
Category:culture -- posted at: 1:28 AM

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There’s a stupid old expression that says “time is the coin of life, be careful how you spend it.” I’m not sure if there’s a soul on Earth that reads that and thinks “yes, I’m definitely spending my time in the wisest way possible.”  After all, how can we?  Life requires us to have many obligations we don’t really want to deal with- school, debt, jobs, families- they just seem to keep piling up, burying us in a stinky heap of duty (pun fully intended).   But, every now and then someone manages to dig their way out of the rubble.  Mr. Greg Carlwood would be one of them.

A couple of years ago, with nothing more than an idea, an anxious middle finger and a desire to better his life, Greg started his own show called The Higherside Chats.  The show now boasts thousands of listeners from all over the world and it’s quickly becoming one of the most popular destinations on the net for alternative media and conspiracy chatter.  Oh, and it also enabled him to quit his fulfilling, soul-sucking day job in retail. 

 If you’d like to take the plunge into Greg’s deep and murky waters (you do), check out the following-

Higherside chats

Conspiratees

Twitter

Facebook

Join the thousands who already support Midwest Real. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook and don’t forget to subscribe and review on Itunes!

 

 

Direct download: HIGHERSIDECHATSII.mp3
Category:culture -- posted at: 11:37 PM

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Compared to the rest of the world, the west has reached a very cushy state, but things haven't always been all corn, beef and football.  Getting to this warm, chubby place required revolution, civil war and plenty of good old fashioned dissidence.  Indeed, many heads were bashed in the name of liberties we now take for granted. 

Thankfully, most of us don’t have to take to the streets to fight for basic rights anymore, but there's still plenty of controversial, if not totally backwards, philosophies being preached on all sides of the political spectrum. The government can still chill dissent, ban firearms, give unfair tax breaks to giant conglomerates, spy on us, tell us who we can and can’t marry, what women can and can’t do with their bodies, even mandate what substances we can and can’t use to explore our own consciousnesses. 

We all have our own opinions with respect to the ethical, ideological and political debates surrounding such subjects, yet there’s only one that regularly lands thousands of people in handcuffs each year.  Here's a hint- it's a little green plant.  Inexplicably, with very minimal digging, it becomes obvious that cannabis has cultivated a persona and a legal treatment based almost completely on falsehoods disinformation and nonsense.  Though more than half of our population (55-58% according to the latest polls) has woken up to this fact, the caricaturization, misunderstanding and demonizing never seems to end.  

Our guest, Adam Scorgie has probably done more to shed light on the truth behind cannabis than 99% of humanity.  (Which, I guess makes him a one-per-center of a different kind).  He’s is one of the main driving forces behind the critically acclaimed cult-classic documentary film, The Union, the Business Behind Getting High and its upcoming sequel, The Culture High.  Of course, there's so much more to this man, but you'll have to listen to learn more about that.

For more on Adam, check out the following-

The Culture High

The Union

Adam's Twitter

The Culture High Twitter

The Culture High Facebook

Please, support Midwest Real and join in the conversation! Follow us on Twitter and Facebook and don’t forget to subscribe and review on Itunes!

Direct download: Adamsocreg.mp3
Category:culture -- posted at: 2:09 AM

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We humans have an amazing amount of rational knowledge; painstakingly poking, prodding and measuring basically everything we can get our hands on for generations has brought us to some pretty concrete, indisputable truths about the way the world works.  The rational human mind has cured diseases, coded the human genome and begun mapping the billions of neurons in our own brains.  We have so much objective knowledge we forget that society is practically rotting under the weight of its own increasingly ill, obese, depressed mass. 

Perhaps that’s because humanity’s quantifiable victories are rivaled only by the crushing defeat our subjective, inner-selves have suffered.  We give little credence to our, unique experiences, yet it’s they that truly define and satisfy us.  Indispensable, unquantifiable phenomena like our relationships with others, ourselves, and even the meaning we find in life itself are the things we will inevitably lay thinking about as we take our last breaths, still they take a backseat to mundane accomplishments we will one day find trivial.

If, however, we consider ourselves to be both objective and subjective beings, living in a world that is both objective and subjective, we encounter an interesting paradox.  We find that each is necessary and useful for shaping a fully-realized life.  Philosopher and author Tim Freke calls this “paralogical thinking.”  If we embrace the paradoxes that surround us, he states, we’ll begin to find mystery, meaning, fulfillment and wonder.

For more on paralogical thinking, Tim’s books and other philosophies, click the magical blue words below.

http://www.themysteryexperience.com/

twitter.com/timfreke

facebook/authortimfreke

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Direct download: Timfreke.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:26 AM

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Truth.  Is there even such a thing?  At times, objectivity seems like a given, but with a deeper look, we often find shades gray and learn that the “truth” looks quite different depending upon your point of view.  But, is there such a thing as a greater, transcendent, immutable truth?  Something we can know and take solace in, maybe even aspire toward throughout our lives?  Obviously there’s no clear answer, but if it does exist, you’re sure as hell never going to find it without looking.   

For Android Jones, catching a glimpse of that deeper truth required sacrifice, toil and even grief.  But, now that he’s scratched the surface of it, he strives to foster a deeper relationship with truth by channeling it in every piece of art he creates.  As esoteric and ambitious as that may sound, take one look at Android’s recent art and you’ll find that somewhere within his delicate dance of color where the micro and macro merge it becomes clear that he’s expressing something of a higher order.

For more on Android’s art and his personal philosophies, check out the following:

androidjones.com

androidjones.com-obtain

Android Jones on Twitter

Android Jones on Facebook

What on Earth is Happening

Please, support Midwest Real and join in the conversation! Follow us on Twitter and Facebook and don't forget to subscribe and review on Itunes!

 

Direct download: android1.mp3
Category:culture -- posted at: 3:55 PM

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I have some bad news.  The kind of bad news you’re actively putting off thinking about at this very moment.  Fear and misfortune are lurking just around the corner.  Something bad can and will happen to you, it’s just a matter of time.  As if that weren’t bad enough, most threats to our well-being are totally beyond our control.  So, now that you’re thinking about it, how will you react?  Put it out of your mind? Curl up into a ball and try to hide from it?  Or think to yourself, why not just leave life’s unpleasantness until the last possible second?

The fact of the matter is that we fortunate first-worlders need a reality check.  The societal armor that surrounds us makes us soft, detached and totally unprepared for life’s inevitable nastiness.  We rarely if ever confront the dead, the suffering or the starving, though we intellectually know the ills of the world are coming for us all sooner or later.

This is one of those moments: will you choose the blue pill or the red pill?  Will you try to suppress the fear by going back to watching ESPN and eating beef jerky until the wheels fall off?  Or will you wake up every morning embracing the risks, thinking about how you can grab your day by the balls and squeeze every last bit of impermanent happiness out of it?

Truth be told, I’m far from an expert. I owe most of this insight to this week’s guest, Daniele Bolleli, who as it turns out, is no stranger to fear (or grabbing life by the balls).  In fact, he’s writing a book about it (fear, not ball-grabbing).  Daniele is the author of several books including Create Your Own Religion and On the Warrior’s Path.  He is also a professor who lectures on history and philosophy.  As if that weren’t enough, he has his own podcast, The Drunken Taoist.  Above all else, he’s unbelievably humble and down to Earth.

As you likely know, you can find the show on Twitter and Facebook.  If you like what you hear, click here and leave some Itunes feedback!

Hokahe!

Direct download: bolleli2.mp3
Category:culture -- posted at: 3:37 AM

JET PACKS. CATS. REVOLUTION

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True innovation is rarely foreseeable.  If yesterday's notions about the future were even close to the mark, we'd be flying around in our cars or wearing jet packs and living in floating houses.  Instead, we carry around yesterday's equivalent to a super computer in our pockets and use it to look at cat memes, take pictures of sushi and enable revolution.  Technology has become weird, it eludes definition and form and the more deeply intertwined we become with it, the more ethical dilemmas we run into.

Just as today's digital mainstays largely evaded foresight, so too will the truly important and disruptive technologies of the tomorrow.  Yet, I will always be compelled to wonder what's next and, perhaps more importantly, how it will change what it means to be a human being. 

Luckily, this week, I have someone much more competent and qualified than myself to bounce my inane ramblings off of, Bianca Bosker.  She's one of those people who's close to my age that just makes me feel self-conscious because she's accomplished so much more than I have.  She's the Executive Editor of Huff Post Tech and the author of a very fascinating book called Original Copies.  Make sure you give her a follow on Twitter, check out her book and keep up with her work on Huffington Post. 

It's official, we're a year old and we've got all of you beautiful listeners to thank.  Year one brought in thousands of downloads from over 60 countries and I truly couldn't be more pleased.  To help us hit 2014 ten times stronger, join our community on Twitter and Facebook and subscribe on Itunes if you like what you hear.

Happy New Year!

Direct download: Bianca.mp3
Category:culture -- posted at: 8:45 PM