Quiz Question

One of a continuing series

Mondays are slow days, but there is always a Quiz Question to puzzle, confuse, entertain.

Geography again. Everybody’s favorite subject. No fair running to Google maps. Just close your eyes and remember what it was like when you last drove through these places. Answer any or all. Highest score wins.

  1. Do Oklahoma and Colorado share a border?
  2. Same question—Oklahoma and Missouri?
  3. Michigan and Wisconsin?
  4. Iowa and Kansas?
  5. Minnesota and Nebraska?
  6. Oklahoma and New Mexico?
  7. Arkansas and Kentucky?
  8. Delaware and Pennsylvania?
  9. New Jersey and Maryland?
  10. Oregon and Utah?

Post your answers in the comment section  below. Then scurry over to Google Maps.

Buyer’s Remorse

Some more of the same

I’ve been trying to figure out what Kellyanne Conway does for a living. Apparently others are having the same problem. One of those might be Alisyn Camerota, who anchors New Day for CNN. On Friday (23 June) Camerota interviewed presidential  advisor Conway and brought up the matter of Russian meddling in the 2016 election plus any subsequent hocus pocus. It was an odd interview, and I pulled up a transcript from CNN, part of which follows:

CAMEROTA: Joining us now, we want to get to the counselor to President Trump, Kellyanne Conway. Good morning, Kellyanne.

KELLYANNE CONWAY, COUNSELOR TO PRESIDENT TRUMP: Good morning, Alisyn.

CAMEROTA: Thanks so much for being with us. This is a busy day.

CONWAY: My pleasure.

CAMEROTA: As it always is, lots of breaking news. I want to ask you about Adam Entous’s reporting that he just shared from “The Washington Post” that this goes the furthest we’ve seen to connecting President Putin of Russia to actually giving the directive to interfere in the U.S. election and to try to hurt Hillary Clinton. What’s the White House’s response to this?

CONWAY: Well, the president has said previously, and we’ve got confirmation now from Jeh Johnson, from Adam Schiff, from Dan Coats, from Jim Comey, from Mike Rogers, that there’s no evidence of collusion, number one. And number two, that this doesn’t have an impact on the electoral result. And I think it’s very important to show no nexus has been proven between what Russia or any other foreign government tried to do and the actual election result. The only person making that case prominently is Hillary Clinton. And you have everything saying that there is no nexus, that not a single vote changed, and we’re going to stand by that. We know Donald Trump won fairly and squarely, 306 electoral votes, and it had nothing to do with interference.

CAMEROTA: We know that as well. But what about this new reporting that there are three dozen high-level officials that say they can connect President Putin with giving instructions to hack the DNC computers and to plant fake stories? What is the current White House doing about this?

CONWAY: Well, Alisyn, the president has said previously, and he stands by that, particularly as president-elect, that he would be concerned about anybody interfering in our democracy. We saw a lot of people interfering with our democracy by saying he couldn’t win here at home.

But I really am struck by former homeland security secretary Jeh Johnson’s testimony earlier this week which you covered extensively where he seemed very frustrated the DNC refused the help of the DHS because DHS knew that the DNC was vulnerable. The RNC I’m sure was vulnerable but had those safeguards and protections in place and had a different result. And so it’s very clear that even the Obama administration, there was concern. There were actions trying to be taken. But the question for the DNC is, why were you so arrogant in not letting the homeland security of your own administration help you?

CAMEROTA: That’s fine. But my question for you is, what is the White House, what is President Trump now doing from preventing Russia from doing this again?

CONWAY: This report is new and we’ll discuss it with him later. But he’s been very clear on the record he believes in any tie of numbers of measures to make sure that democracy flourishes and that our voter integrity intact.

CAMEROTA: Such as — I mean, against Russia what is he doing specifically to try to stop this?

CONWAY: Alisyn, I realize that we just like to say the word “Russia, Russia” to mislead the voters. And I know that CNN is aiding and abating this nonsense as well. —

CAMEROTA: Kellyanne —

CONWAY: You’ve asked me the same question three times now —

CAMEROTA: You’re not answering it, Kellyanne.

CONWAY: Yes I am.

CAMEROTA: And what’s he doing?

CONWAY: He has said, he has said very clearly that he wants the voter integrity and the ballot integrity to be protected.

CAMEROTA: And what action is he taking?

CONWAY: — any type of interference — at this very moment, at this very second?

CAMEROTA: Yes.

CONWAY: Oh, yes, because we have nothing to say about Russian collusion affecting the electoral outcome. Those rabbit holes did not bear fruit.

CAMEROTA: Kellyanne, I don’t understand what you’re trying to do talking about collusion.

CONWAY: I’ve answered the question four times.

CAMEROTA: What action is the White House doing to stop Russian interference in elections?

CONWAY: The White House, the president has met with his national security team many times. He has an initiative on a commission on voter integrity, and he himself has used the power of the bully pulpit to express his resistance towards any type of outside interference. So again, I’ve answered the question several times in an ongoing process. You’re dealing with a very new report. So we will look at that as well as we do all —

CAMEROTA: Yes, fair enough. This is a new report. But the idea Russia interfered has been obviously around since now we know before the election.

CONWAY: Yes. Jeh Johnson seemed very frustrated with his own DNC about it. I agree with you.

[08:10:00] CAMEROTA: And in fact said there was great concern that if they did anything openly that they would challenge the integrity of the election process itself. And, look, you’ve heard from this new report that President Obama was afraid that — that Vladimir Putin would up the ante, would ratchet it up. But I understand. You haven’t read the report yet. That’s fine this morning. But, still, this has been going on for months. So the president talking about it, do you think that he’s done enough to sending a signal to Russia to stop this?

CONWAY: I think the president has been very clear on how he feels about this issue and many others. Do you know, Alisyn, he also has a full roster. I know CNN and others don’t want to cover it. He just last week opened up a $100 million investment in apprenticeship programs. And 90 percent of people who go through these skills, certification apprentice programs are employed in short order with an average of $60,000 salary. Where is the reporting on that? This week just back here, Secretary Price and I met with Obamacare victims. They’re real. They’re suffering. They’ve been left behind out of the Affordable Care Act. If you want the information, I’ll provide it you can interview them.

CAMEROTA: I think that, Kellyanne —

CONWAY: The markets love this presidency. There’s so much real people impact happening here that doesn’t get covered on the altar of Russia.

CAMEROTA: Kellyanne, I think that a lot of people think that Russia trying to interfere in our democracy is a big story.

CONWAY: It is, but there are other stories. And I know we’re all capable of covering many of them. You have a 24/7 cable news outlet that certainly can fill lots of are content. I’m giving you great story ideas because we hear from people every day. They want him, and certainly in these special elections, people rejected this Russia obsession because they like the fact there’s job creation, regulation is being rolled back, health care is —

CAMEROTA: Yes, we do cover, obviously, the jobs report, Kellyanne. And I know everyone’s a producer and everybody has ideas of what CNN should cover. But Kellyanne, I think that —

CONWAY: We’re helping.

CAMEROTA: Thank you — is that the president has not given a terribly full-throated announcement that he believes that Russia interfered. He says things like, they may have. It may have been China.

CONWAY: Alisyn, so we’re just asking, we’re having the same conversation through six different semantic differences. That’s fine. It’s your show. You can ask me what you want. But I will just remind you as politely as I can that this entire conversation was irrelevant to voters in these four special elections. Everybody tried hard as they could to make it something other than job creation, rollback of draconian, byzantine regulations, the unleashing of entrepreneurship, including if these small business owners, and I was one for over 20 years, gets a 15 percent to 20 percent tax bracket. That will be monumentally transformative in our country’s economy. This is important things that people want to focus on. Yesterday the Senate released their health care legislation.

All right. And there was a lot more, as the interview moved to other topics. Here is a link to the full interview.

So, I’m going to attempt to summarize:

Camerota: Good morning Kellyanne. Who does your hair?

Conway: President Trump is the best since Abraham Lincoln.

Camerota: Enough with the pleasantries. Does the President have plans to do something about current and future meddling by the Russians?

Conway: I like your shoes.

Camerota: Thanks, Kellyanne, but you didn’t answer my question. Does the President have a plan?

Conway: Alisyn, you’re getting snippy.

Camerota: About the Russians. Does President Trump plan to deal with this matter.

Conway: Jobs, jobs, jobs.

Camerota: Kellyanne, about the Russians…

Conway: Alisyn, bitch. I have already answer that question four times.

[At this point Conway seems to have lost count. By my count she has answered that question zero times.]

Camerota: Kellyanne, you have not answered my question…

Conway: We won, and you losers lost. How about all of you go suck an egg.

Which leads me to wonder:

Hey, Kelly-Anne, what’s your game now?
Can anybody play?

[With apologies to the Hollies]

Bad Movie of the Week

One of a series

This is another from The Shadow collection. It’s International Crime, from 1938 and starring Rod La Rocque as Lamont Cranston/The Shadow. This was before I was born, and I’m not sorry I missed it. Significant aspects of the story are way lame. This appears to be a Grand National Picture, although the titles do not mention Grand National. You have to get the production company off the movie poster on Amazon or Wikipedia, where I am getting other technical  details. Screen shots are from Amazon Prime Video.

Here La Rocque reprises his Shadow role from The Shadow Strikes. and Behind the Mask. It’s difficult to take any of the Shadow plots seriously, this one especially.

Here the Shadow is a radio crime commentator. He has a nightly broadcast, during which he recounts numerous incidences of crime while giving out sound advice to citizens in general. Here he speaks while his able assistant works the controls.

In barges cute Phoebe Lane (Astrid Allwyn) with a story about an impending crime. She’s a royal pain, but Cranston  can’t get rid of her, because her uncle owns the newspaper/radio station. She says a complete stranger (had an honest face) told her a specific movie theater will be robbed at 9 p.m.

Cranston alerts the police and rushes over there. Commissioner Weston (Thomas E. Jackson) is not pleased with Cranston’s butting in.

Sure enough. the advice about a robbery was a ruse to siphon police away from the scene of an actual crime. A safe has been blown up as its owner opened it, killing  the wealthy taxpayer. Cranston is there ahead of the police and gets stuck in the slammer as a material witness.

Bonded out, Cranston quizzes Phoebe, who now recalls the person with the holdup tale spoke with an accent. Cranston tries several accents until Phoebe recognizes his phony Austrian accent. They need to look for an Austrian.

But where to look? Why, where Austrians dine. Any Austrian criminal villain is bound to be dining out right now at a fancy Austrian restaurant, so the two put on  their glad rags and make the tour. Until Phoebe spots the man. He is international financier Flotow (Wilhelm von Brincken),  and when Cranston saunters over to Flotow’s table and pretends to be a fellow Austrian, Phoebe chimes in and gives away the scam. Flotow recognizes her from her picture in the newspaper atop her home body column.

More ensues, but the critical mass is that Flotow and associate put the squeeze on Roger Morton (John St. Polis), brother of the murdered man. They force him to write a suicide note and then hand him a gun.

But just then Cranston and the police enter and put an end to the crime spree. We see Cranston and Phoebe doing a follow-up broadcast.

Hokey to the highest degree, of course. Particularly that part about shopping around at Austrian restaurants looking for the stranger who gave Phoebe the bogus crime story.

La Roque began appearing in films about age 15, and had a long and successful career. But this was one of his final roles. Three years later he was Ted Sheldon in Meet John Doe, which starred Gary Cooper. He died in 1969.

Time was about up for Grand National Pictures. That company lasted from 1936 to  1939. We have seen them before.

Bad Joke of the Week

One of a continuing series

Mother of Jesus, please come back.

I have this friend Bill, who’s a police officer, and he was telling me this strange tale.

He was doing  his nightly patrol in his police cruiser, and he was checking out cars parked beside a city park. There were two cars, and he put his flashlight in the window of one. Nothing. Then he moved over to the other and uncovered a man and a woman getting it on in the back seat.

“Hey, people,” he admonished them. “Take this somewhere else.”

The man spoke up. “It’s all right officer. This is my wife.”

“Sorry, fellow. I didn’t know,” Bill responded.

The man told him, “Neither did I  until you put the light in her face.”

Friday Funny

Number 64 of a series

Let me know if you find this funny. I know I did, and so did a bunch of others. This was last September on Outnumbered, which comes on Fox at noon. Eric Trump, son of the current president, was on, and he was explaining his father’s rise to greatness despite coming from a childhood of disadvantage. From the video on YouTube:

He’s built an amazing company. He’s become the epitome of the American dream. He’s gone from just about nothing to…

And that’s where I, and most others, stopped listening.

People, how come nobody allowed me to come from just about nothing? Oh, the curse of an opulent upbringing.

And that is funny.

Yes, we have no covfefe.

There is an old song, and I made some changes to the lyrics:

“Yes, we have no covfefe
We have-a no covfefe today.
We’ve string beans, and onions
Cabbageses, and scallions,
And all sorts of fruit and say
We have an old fashioned to-mah-to
A Long Island po-tah-to
But yes, we have no covfefe.
We have no covfefe today.”

You need to know that came immediately to mind on hearing this announcement:

(CNN) — President Donald Trump did not record his conversations with fired FBI Director James Comey, he tweeted on Thursday, ending weeks of speculation kick-started by the President himself.

“With all of the recently reported electronic surveillance, intercepts, unmasking and illegal leaking of information, I have no idea whether there are ‘tapes’ or recordings of my conversations with James Comey, but I did not make, and do not have, any such recordings,” Trump tweeted.

Now we can get back to things of more interest to voters. Such as who had the largest inauguration crowd.

Minor Absurdity

The cartoon is by one of my favorites. Scott Adams has been poking fun, through Dilbert, at American business and society on a grand scale since 1995, drawing from his experience working in business and project development. He has other interests, besides:

Russia Hacked our Election! (So what?)

I see a consensus forming that Russia attempted to influence our election with fake news and other social media shenanigans.

But why?

It’s an entry in Scott Adams’ Blog, and it’s worth some diagnosis. Here are a few snippets along with my comments:

If you start with the assumption that Russia is an enemy of the United States, you probably assume they do bad things to us simply to weaken our power and effectiveness. For example, this article hypothesizes that Russia’s intention was to breed distrust between whoever became president and our intelligence services. I guess that hypothesis sort-of-almost makes sense. But I wouldn’t say it passes my personal sniff test.

What is absurd in a minor way is his use of the term “assumption.” Take that away and also substitute “Vladimir Putin” for “Russia,” and you get a picture that has considerable credence. Former KGB foreign intelligence officer in the and current president, seemingly for life, of the Russian state gives all the appearances of being a very bad character. Any difference between Vladimir Putin and a heavy-handed dictator is difficult to discern. Not to sound conspiratorial, but people who oppose Putin tend to die a lot, in the most prejudicial ways. No examples given. None need be.

That Putin, through Russia, is opposed to this country and to much of Western political influence is manifest in his actions in  Georgia and Ukraine. Adams might want to have his sniffer tested.

Then there’s the more popular theory that the Russians were colluding with the Trump campaign because Putin thought he could somehow control President Trump via blackmail, or business ties, or something else we’re imagining. I guess that could be true. Sort of. But that doesn’t pass my sniff test either.

Again, Scott, get thee to a clinic to have thy sniffer tested. If Putin is not exercising blackmail over the President of the United States, it would only be because he has no need to. The accommodation given to the Russian dictatorship by Donald Trump is without parallel in history.

President Donald Trump meets with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, second left, at the White House on May 10, 2017. Fourth from right is Russian Ambassador to the U.S. Sergei Kislyak. Russian Foreign Ministry Photo / AP

Photo attribution is given to the Associated Press, but I have it on good evidence that I need not worry about stepping on their copyright, because the ultimate source is an agency of the Russian government. The President of the United States invited the Russian press but excluded any member of the American press. This came the day after President Trump fired the director of the FBI, apparently because Director James Comey would not lay off investigating Trump’s dealings with the Russians. And finally, if the Russians want to come at me for copyright infringement, then let them have at it.

Then there’s the hypothesis that Russia was messing with our democratic system to weaken the country by sowing distrust about the election process, or possibly by electing a president they believed would be less effective. But I have a hard time believing the Russians thought Trump would be ineffective. Maybe they just thought he would be divisive, and perhaps they thought that’s good for Russia in some way.

Scott has a “hard time believing Trump would be ineffective.” Then he must have a hard time believing the Russians are not stupid. That Trump is ineffective is manifest on a broad scale. The president the Russians did not believe would be ineffective is proving to be an embarrassment to his own party. Republicans may swoon at his tweeted goals, but they are confounded by the litany of prevarications and contradictions coming daily. Daniel Dale of the Toronto Star has cataloged 300 (and more?) miscues from Donald Trump since 20 January this year. Considering the term “ineffective” we need only to think “NATO.” NATO, set up by retired General Eisenhower and President Truman after World War Two to oppose Soviet expansion in Europe, is a constant obstruction to Putin’s European ambitions. Our effective president first declared NATO a non-entity, then forswore our obligations under the treaty, then reaffirmed these same obligations. How many different ways are there to spell “ineffective?”

As Putin accurately pointed out in a recent interview, hackers can make their attacks seem to come from other sources, including Russia. I assume there are hundreds, if not thousands, of Trump-supporting Americans with the skills to hack poorly-secured servers. Even if you assume Putin wanted to hack American servers, he would have needed to get in line to do it. Given all the American hackers who opposed Hillary Clinton, there is perhaps a one-in-a-hundred chance Putin’s hackers (if they exist) got to the DNC and Clinton’s servers before the hordes of non-Russian hackers did it. So even if Putin tried, the odds are low that his team got to the good stuff first.

It’s hard to get past “Putin accurately pointed out in a recent interview.” It is heartening to know we can  count on a Russian dictator for sound advice. What I find interesting is that Scott, who formerly worked in the industry, is not current with the technology. He is also not up on the findings of people who do this sort of thing for a living. The people who do this sort of thing for a living, e.g., the CIA, FBI, NSA, have found the attacks came from the Russians, disguised has having come from elsewhere. American  intelligence services also determine the blame ultimately falls at the feet of Vladimir Putin. In response, Scott is going to have to tell us our intelligence agencies are lying to us. But this he has not done. Additionally, Scott’s analysis of cyber attacks is naive at the least. He appears to buy into the Hollywood view of spies breaking encrypted passwords. Unfortunately for him, that is not the way this stuff is usually done. All successful attacks I have seen reported in  the news have been by way of “social engineering” You trick somebody into revealing the password,  or you plant somebody (Edward Snowden) inside to steal the information you want. Scott may want to read up on the history of computer intrusion.

Let’s say Russia did attempt to influence American voters to support Trump. The first question I have to ask is this: Aren’t all the big countries trying to influence elections in all the other countries, all the time? If Russia did try to influence an American election, wouldn’t that be business as usual? Do we imagine the United States is NOT trying to influence foreign elections through our own fake news and social media manipulations? I always assumed we do that sort of thing. I base that assumption on the following observation about human beings:

Is it possible Scott previously denied the Russians did this stuff, and now he is saying so what if they did it? Our intelligence services say that is exactly what the Russians, under the direction of Vladimir Putin, did.

But let’s get back to Russia’s presumed payoff for somehow destabilizing the United States. I think we need to check that assumption because Putin seems like a smart guy. It’s hard for me to believe he thinks he would come out ahead by destabilizing the world’s most important military and economic power. And that is doubly true when you are teaming with that country to fight ISIS, put a cap on North Korea, and keep the economy chugging along. It’s hard for me to imagine a scenario in 2017 in which Russia gains by poking America with a sharp stick. The probable outcome seems more bad than good. Who wants a pissed-off nuclear superpower looking in your direction? It doesn’t pass the sniff test. If Putin were an idiot, I could see him wanting to cause this sort of trouble just because he was dumb.

Scott goes on to say Putin is not dumb.

He finds it difficult to believe Russia (Vladimir Putin) would seek to check us who “are teaming with that country to fight ISIS.” Please replay the most recent state of this teaming to defeat ISIS:

The U.S. downing of a Syrian government jet over the weekend marks an escalation in the long Syrian conflict, although Russia’s bold response Monday to view U.S. aircraft in the region as legitimate “targets” is seen more as “bluster” than anything else.

Yes, the United States and Russia are so hunky-dory on all matters of defense. Yes, Scott, this does pass the smell test.

I’d like to introduce a new hypothesis to explain why Russia might have wanted to influence American elections: They believed a Hillary Clinton presidency would be a disaster to the world, including Russia.

The best observation is that Putin strongly opposed Hillary Clinton and desired strongly that she not become president. Not so much the rest of the world, where Clinton holds great popularity. Trump and Putin not so much.

Did Putin or other Russian nationals try to influence American elections? I assume so. I also assume America has done the same – in terms of influence on their local politics – to Russia, and to every one of our allies.

Finally, Scott Adams turns his argument around. That the Russians were behind the attacks on the 2016 election is something that does not pass his smell test, and finally that—his smell test notwithstanding—it is true. His assumptions aside.

And that is what I call a minor absurdity.

Your Friend The Handgun

Nothing new here, folks.

Sometimes you cannot have too much protection. What is needed is more guns in the hands of more people. At other times:

Innocent bystander shot outside popular downtown Minneapolis
bar

Steve Ericson, KARE 10:26 PM. CDT May 14, 2017

MINNEAPOLIS An innocent bystander was caught in gunfire during a fight and subsequent shooting outside a popular downtown Minneapolis bar on Saturday night.

The shooting happened around 8 p.m. outside Lyon’s Pub at 16 South 6th Street. Authorities say there was some sort of argument between two groups of younger people when several shots were fired.

Obviously, too slow on the draw. Needs more practice.

Trump News

More From Trump News

Yes, your memory is correct. I subscribe to a newsletter from Trump News. That’s the name of the sender when their daily report shows up in my inbox. The site is EnVolve.com, and the screen shot above is from today’s mailing. Please pardon, but I jacked up the contrast so you can read the caption beneath the photo. The link points to a page that elaborates:

Negative Liberal Media REFUSES To Report What This Republican Patriot Did!

Vice President Mike Pence and lawmakers took a moment to support the victims of last week’s shooting at a congressional baseball game practice by donating blood on Capitol Hill Tuesday.

It is no surprise to see the Vice President doing this, as he often examples what Patriotism looks like for the everyday citizen. Also not surprising is the clear lack of media coverage that such service would generally merit. Clearly, the negative liberal media would hate to ever show that any Republican, especially the Vice President, could ever have a caring heart for others.

And that’s the message for today. A deranged gunman, a Bernie Sanders supporter, shot up a baseball  practice session, wounding several, including Congressman Steve Scalise of Louisiana District 1. And patriotic Vice President Mike Pence stepped forward to donate blood. And the liberal media (meaning the mainstream news outlets) refused to report it. “REFUSED.”

Refused, that is, except for ABC News:

Mike Pence, other lawmakers donate to Capitol Hill blood bank in honor of Scalise

By DAVID CAPLAN

Vice President Mike Pence was among those on Capitol Hill Tuesday who rolled up their sleeves and donated blood in honor of the victims of last week’s shooting at congressional baseball practice at an Alexandria, Virginia, park.

That was posted today. The blood drive is still ongoing and will continue tomorrow. It will be interesting to see just how many mainstream news sources refuse, absolutely refuse, to cover the story. So far Washington News 8 has covered it, as well as The Hill.

Regarding Trump News, I am dead certain this is not an official Donald Trump outlet. From all appearances it is an independent enterprise established to capitalize on Trump’s notoriety and his fan base. Another thing I am sure of is that Trump supporters read Trump News, and they accept its news as factual. It’s another sign we live in interesting times.

Bad Movie Wednesday

One of a continuing series

This one has been a long time getting to these pages—30 years to be exact. From 1987 it’s Over The Top, starring Sylvester Stallone as he-man truck driver Lincoln Hawk. It’s a Golan-Globus production, so you sort of know what to expect. The two cousins are noted for a tableaux of off-kilter productions, including:

That’s just up through the 1980s, and there are many I didn’t list. This one was directed by Menahem Golan. Screen shots are from Amazon Prime Video, which is a trove of hard-to-find productions. I promise more of these in the future. Details are from Wikipedia. The story in a few sentences.

Michael Cutler-Hawk (David Mendenhall) is graduating from a prestigious military academy.

Meanwhile, his father is coming to pick him up and take him to see his mother, who is dying.

The mother is sweet Christina Cutler-Hawk (Susan Blakely). Her husband long ago deserted her and their son, due to interference from her filthy rich and domineering father, Jason Cutler (Robert Loggia).

The kid did not even know his father existed, and is not impressed by having to ride home in a second-hand big rig tractor. But dad introduces Mike to an entirely different life—eating at a truck stop serving truck driver fare and crowded with dudes wanting to challenge Dad to an arm wrestle at $1000 a pop. Dad beats one tough guy and declines the invite from another, even more massive, hulk.

Mike gets his chance when he encounters flak from a tough kid. He loses his first round, but his dad reminds him that soul counts for much in competition and in life. He slams to tough guy in the second round.

The mother dies before the kid gets home, and the kid rejects his dad, noting that in ten years he never got a birthday card. Grandfather Cutler takes custody of the kid, against all legal standards, and big Hawk responds by ramming his rig through the Cutler estate security gate, across the fountain-festooned front yard and through the front door of the house.

Of course, big Hawk gets thrown into the slammer for this, and he seeks to redeem himself by selling his rig and investing the proceeds in a Las Vegas bet on himself in the world championship competition. The remainder of the movie shows the kid escaping the Cutler estate, stealing granddad’s pickup truck, taking a flight to Las Vegas, and cheering his dad to victory.

Yeah, you and I are on the same page here. Stallone was one piece of beef in those days, but seeing him put down guys with biceps thicker than his waistline really is a bit over the top.

The movie is well directed and photographed. The story is strictly manufactured. Stallone had his own take. From the Amazon screen notes:

Years later, Sylvester Stallone explained why he agreed to appear in this movie, saying, “Menahem Golan kept offering me more and more  money, until I finally thought, “What the hell – no one will see it!”

The joke’s on you, Sly.