Saturday, October 29, 2016

The FBI has NOT re-opened case on Clinton emails

Let's set this straight.  The FBI Director James Comey did not say they was re-opening the Hillary Clinton email server investigation. But he set that false rumor in motion, and Republicans are seeing that it snowballs.  Here's what we know at this point.

1.  James B. Comey testified about the investigation of the Clinton email server before the House Oversight Committee last year, and he said under oath that his report on the investigation was a full and complete report.   Now the FBI has come across some more emails through an "unrelated investigation" that may -- or may not -- have some bearing on that testimony.  They don't know yet.   But it could mean that his report to the committee is no longer full and complete.    So he felt it necessary to notify the committee of that fact, even though it will require further investigation to see if it does have some bearing on the Clinton case.

2.  The "unrelated investigation" turns out to be a computer seized in the FBI investigation of Anthony Weiner in his sexting with a 15 year old girl.    Weiner is separated from his wife, Huma Abedin, who is a top aide to Hillary Clinton.   She also used that home computer.   Apparently she exchanged some emails with her husband using her cell phone, which uses the Clinton server.   Hence the possible -- not proved -- connection with Clinton's case.

3.  The Republican chair of that committee, Jason Chafetz, promptly tweeted out that the FBI is reopening the Clinton email server case.   That is not true.    This was obviously done for maximum political purposes by this partisan committee chair.  And of course the Trump campaign has seized on this and making wild claims about proof that Hillary is a crook.  

4.  What is not known is FBI Director Comey's motivation in doing this now in a way he should have known would immediately be used for political purposes by the Republicans he sent the letter to.    He is widely regarded by both Democrats and Republicans as a straight shooter, having been the Acting Attorney General who stood up to Dick Cheney and George Bush who tried to bulldoze AG Ashcroft into signing off on an illegal surveillance renewal program while he lay ill and under sedation in the hospital.   President Obama appointed him to be FBI Director.

5.  Despite Comey's stellar reputation, this is totally unprecedented.   The FBI is traditionally extremely careful not to release information close to an election time about any investigation that might affect the outcome of an election.   Serious questions were raised by Comey's public statement last year about the Clinton server investigation.  And now this raises grave criticism and serious questions about his integrity in doing this -- with apparent total disregard for how it would be misused.

6.  Democratic ranking member on the Senate Intelligence Committee Diane Feinstein wrote a scathing letter, criticizing Comey.  The Clinton campaign has called for him to release the full information which would presumably show that no classified information was compromised by this route.   They are not afraid of the truth;  they're being hurt by the Republican speculations and assumptions.

7.  Comey seems to be either very naive, or excessively pedantic in thinking he needed to correct his statement of "full and complete" as quickly as possible, rather than waiting 11 days -- or else he is engaging in the worst sort of partisan leaks from the highest legal office of the United States Department of Justice.   I'd hate to think it is the latter.   But Comey is a Republican.   He sent this letter to Chafetz without even seeing the emails, and they are said by sources to be neither to or from Clinton herself.

8.  It's unlikely that this will change the outcome of who wins the presidential election.   But, if not cleared up in the next day or two by Comey himself, it will likely slow the momentum for a Clinton landslide, which will affect down ballot races.   It could make a difference in the control of the Senate and House.

9.   AG Comey, it's your move to correct this mess you have set in motion. 


Late addition:   Apparently Comey felt under pressure in the other direction:   that if he didn't notify the committee -- which has already been accusing him of cover-up -- and this did prove to be something, then they would charge him with real cover-up.   So he leaned over in the other direction and created an opportunity for partisan politics to go into play before the election and possibly change the course of the election.   Bad choice.   This close to an election, if you don't have incontrovertible proof of something, you should just keep quiet.

Friday, October 28, 2016

"Golden clouds of his own intellectual flatulence." That's Charles Pierce on Newt Gingrich

Newt Gingrich got into a spat with Megyn Kelly on Fox's "The Kelly File" the other night over Gingrich's claim that they were not giving sufficient coverage to the revelations from the hacked Clinton campaign's emails -- and instead giving too much coverage to the women accusing Donald Trump of sexual assault.

Kelly said the emails were "worth covering, and we did."   But the thrice married Gingrich, who seems to begin each new marriage with an extra-marital affair, shot back at Kelly:  "You are fascinated with sex, and you don't care about public policy."   (Actually the hacked emails reveal details about running a political campaign, not public policy.   But let's not quibble over details when a volcano is about to erupt.)

Kelly tried to clarify that she's actually focused, not on sex, but on the "protection of women and understanding what we're getting in the Oval Office."   Being the bully that he is, he interrupted her to call Bill Clinton a sexual predator and claimed that we're about to "put him back in the East Wing" (meaning the Oval Office area).

From there it escalated in tone, with Gingrich dismissing the Trump accusers and talking over her to demand that Kelly say the words "Bill Clinton" and "sexual predator" in the same sentence.   I dare you to say it;  I dare you," he repeated.   Megyn Kelly kept her cool and dispatched the bully with this:

"Excuse me, sir. We on the Kelly File have covered the Clinton matter as well. . . . But he's not on the ticket. And the polls also show that the American public is less interested in the deeds of Hillary Clinton's husband than they are in the man who asks us to make him president, Donald Trump. We're gonna have to leave it at that, and you can take your anger issues and spend some time working on them, Mr. Speaker."   And then they shut him off.

Of course, the Trump camp whooped with glee, saying Gingrich had triumphed over Kelly.  Others thought otherwise, saying Gingrich made a fool of himself.  Charles Pierce, that shaggy-dog wordsmith who writes astute political analysis for Esquire has referred to Gingrich thus:

"He long ago departed this earthly realm on golden clouds of his own intellectual flatulence, but his shilling for Donald Trump has sent him spiraling off toward the Horsehead Nebula. . . . Despite being A Historian and a Leading Intellect, he also is a crazy person who hears Alex Jones through his fillings."

Couldn't have said it better myself.


Will Trump's vigilante poll watchers sink the RNC?

Here's the background for this:   In the 1981 election, the Democratic National Committee (DNCsued the Republican National Committee (RNC) for voter intimidation.   In New Jersey, they had a program of aggressive "poll watchers" who were ostensibly there to ensure "ballot security."  In fact, they had arm bands, many were off-duty police or security officers, lending an air of officialdom.   They would aggressively question people standing in line, challenge their eligibility to vote.   There was good evidence that this had been a coordinated effort at voter suppression, with printed signs offering a cash reward for anyone who turned in an actual case of voter fraud.   The phone number listed led to the RNC headquarters.

The result of the court challenge from the DNC was that the RNC entered into a consent decree, which restricted the RNC from doing any election day poll monitoring -- and that is exactly what Donald Trump has been urging his crowds to do.    They briefly even had a web site where anyone could print out an official looking "badge," with their name, and an arm band.

What they are encouraging clearly would violate the RNC's consent decree, which is still in effect 35 years later but is set to expire in December 2016 -- which the RNC naturally is eager to have lifted.   If the DNC can show that the RNC has violated this decree, it could extend the restriction for as much as another eight years.

So, the question has become:   Can the RNC convince the court that it is not involved in this effort, even though its nominee for the head of the ticket is clear on multiple video tapes actively exhorting his crowds to do this?    Even saying, "Go and watch . . . and you know what I mean."  Would it take the RNC disavowing its own candidate, telling the court -- we have nothing to do with his campaign?   Well, they're trying.

This story just broke on Wednesday, when the DNC filed the court papers.  So far the RNC has issued this statement:

“The RNC strictly abides by the consent decree and does not take part directly or indirectly in any efforts to prevent or remedy vote fraud.  Nor do we coordinate with the Trump campaign or any other campaign or party organization in any efforts they may make in this area. . . . The RNC remains focused on getting out the vote.”

Big questions.    If Trump loses decisively, as is almost certain from all predictions not coming from the Trump campaign itself, it may be moot for the outcome of the election.  But if the court finds the RNC has violated its consent decree, it will make a lot of difference to the RNC going forward.

So, what's it going to be, folks?    Just one more way that Donald Trump has virtually destroyed a party that already had big cracks and was taking on too much water to stay afloat.   Trump may have just pulled the plug to finish it off.


Thursday, October 27, 2016

Guess who will lead the celebration of the 100th year anniversary of women's right to vote?

The 19th amendment to the U.S. Constitution, giving women the right to vote, was passed in 1920.  If we elect Hillary Clinton on November 8th, she will be president in 2020 when that 100th anniversary comes.   What a celebration that should be !!!!!

So vote.   It's unthinkable that we'd have the misogynistic, woman-groping President Trump in the Oval Office on that day.


Clinton under a glass ceiling on election night.

On November 8th, Hillary Clinton will be holding an election night event in New York at the Jacob Javits Convention Center -- which literally has a glass ceiling.

photo by Carlo Allegri/Reuters

As to whether any glass will literally be broken, we'll have to wait to see.   But metaphorically there could not be a more fitting venue for this breaking-the- glass-ceiling event of the century.


Republicans plan to continue obstruction in Senate -- if we let them keep control

Republicans in the House are already gearing up, we hear, for endless investigations of President Hillary Clinton.   You know that House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform that held an eighth government hearing on Benghazi, including an 11 hour testimony from former Secretary of State Clinton?   The one that cost millions of dollars and produced . . . nothing new?    The committee that grilled the IRS Commissioner and threatened to hold him in contempt -- because he didn't come up with evidence to confirm their paranoid conspiracy theory?  The committee that the truly odious Darrel Issa (R-CA) used to chair, followed by the only slightly less odious Jason Chaffetz (R-UT)?

Seems to me, when the Democrats were in control of the House and its committees, that committee used to do some useful work that was really needed.   But under Republicans, they seem to use it primarily to torture Democrats.

And then there's the Senate.   Both Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) and (speaking of odious) Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX)  have said that the Senate will not confirm any nominees to the Supreme Court made by President Hillary Clinton.

To me, that is, on the face of it, reason enough to vote the Republicans out of office so they cannot paralyze our government that way.    If our fellow citizens don't see fit to do that, then I think the Democrats ought to begin impeachment proceedings against all of the Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee for abuse of power and failure to carry out their duty to uphold the Constitution.

In Georgia, it's a bit of a long shot but not totally out of the possible.   Our incumbent and generally well-liked Republican Sen. Johnny Isakson has a small lead over a not-well-known Democratic challenger Jim Barksdale, plus a Libertarian candidate -- the combination could send it into a run-off.    So, Georgia voters, let's give it a try.   Vote for Jim Barksdale for Senate.


Late afternoon news flash:  Someone from the Cato Institute has put out a paper giving the opinion that the Senate could actually and literally refuse to confirm any new justices to the Supreme Court, ever -- even to the point of letting the institution die.   His point is that the Constitution gives the Senate the responsibility to "advise and consent" on judicial appointments, but it does not define "advise and consent."   If we don't vote these clowns out of office now when we have the chance, we could have a major constitutional crisis on our hands.  Please wake me up from this nightmare.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Michael Moore's empathic explanation of the white, working class men who are Trump voters

Documentary filmmaker and provocateur Michael Moore is promoting his new film called "Michael Moore in TrumpLand."  He appeared on MSNBC's "All in With Chris Hayes" on Monday night, and the conversation turned to Moore's understanding of the angry, white male, working-class, Trump voter.

If you know something of the progressive themes of Moore's prior films and his criticisms of liberalism's failures, from a progressive point of view, you might be surprised to learn of his background.   He grew up -- and still lives -- in a working-class neighborhood of auto workers, many now unemployed, in Flint, Michigan.

Moore understands these dejected white men and recognizes the legitimacy of their right to be angry.   Not that he agrees with them about Trump;  but he understands them.   In his film, he is not so much trying to tear Trump down as he is making the case for Clinton and a progressive approach to the problems we face.   Moore was an enthusiastic Bernie Sanders supporter who now is vigorously hoping to elect Hillary Clinton.

His conversation with Chris Hayes turned to these Trump voters.   Chris framed it this way:  "Part of why this election is so viscerally intense is because it feels likes we're answering the question:   Whose country is this?   Who gets to say 'It's our country, and we run things.'
*   *   *   
Moore:  "It's actually a changing of the guard, which actually started many elections ago, culminating in the American people -- our fellow citizens -- twice electing a man whose middle name was Hussein.   And now this is the end.   They should play The Doors' song at the beginning of every Trump rally, "This is The End," because they know it's the end.

"And that's why they're so angry.  That's why it's so crazy this year.  They're so out of control.   Because, if you've held power for so long . . . [in] a conservative country and [now] . . . . "That's over.  We live in a liberal country.

"Our fellow Americans take the liberal position on every single issue, whether it's pro-choice, whether it's women should be paid the same as men, whether it's the environment . . . go down the line.   And last week, the last issue that Americans weren't liberal on -- the latest poll now shows that the majority are now opposed to the death penalty.   So, they're against the death penalty, they're for the decriminalization of marijuana.   Go down the whole list.   It's all liberal, liberal, liberal . .

"And if you're a conservative, if you are a Republican, if you're a Trump supporter, this is like a cacophony of madness, that you have let power slip away.  And, if you want to look at the macro of it, men, white men, have been in power for a very long time.   A good 10,000 years at least. . . . And it's been a nice run, Chris, that you and I and the others have had.   And now it's over.  And the thing is, we've let it happen on our watch.   Pappy and Grandpappy handed this down to us.   And now the men of our time are letting the women, and the gays, and the blacks take over.

"People I grew up with.    Auto workers, people who have lost their jobs, people who used to be part of the middle class.   That's all over for them.  And so they are angry.   Trump, to them, and I've had many guys tell me this. . .   I've had three guys working on my film crew tell me they're voting for Trump.   They say, they don't really like him that much, but they want to see the system blow up.   Trump is the human Molotov cocktail that they want to go in that voting booth and go 'bing!'"
*   *   *

I've read this now from a number of different sources, saying that a lot of Trump voters are not so much for what Trump would bring or what he would do.   It's more of a fuck-you howl against a society that has spun out of the orbit they are familiar with and comfortable with -- and where they feel they had a place.   And they no longer have it.

And that is not imaginary.   It is literally true.   It's partly the loss of manufacturing jobs and the economic inequality, but it's also the cultural changes that have displaced the white, heterosexual man from his position in charge.    That's perhaps why immigration and refugees have taken the brunt of their rage.   To these men, these 'invaders' are the scapegoat for their feeling that something, or some people, are displacing them from their position in the world.

I don't think we should simply dismiss those concerns by telling them to "get over it.   Nor is the solution to reverse these changes.  But, in our anger at Trump and those who feel empowered by his rallies, Michael Moore is telling us that some of their anger is legitimate and that they need to be understood, and they need help to feel that they still matter, too.

What these men are experiencing cannot be equated with the enormity of oppression -- from slavery and up through 2016 -- that is expressed in the liberating message "Black Lives Matter."  But their retort "All Lives Matter" now has a little more context, thanks to Michael Moore's empathy for these angry men.


Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Trump Trivia -- that's what we're down to

The campaign for president is essentially over, and Clinton and her surrogates are working on a Senate majority, as well as some close House races.   So it's time to relax with a bit of Trump Trivia.

1.   Donald Trump has finally received his first endorsement from a large daily newspaper:  the Las Vegas Review-Journal.   This is the one that billionaire and GOP mega-donor Sheldon Adelson bought through secret stand-in buyers last year.   It led to resignations by some of the paper's respected journalists, but that's another story.  Trump was not Adelson's first choice, but the casino magnate has come around.  He put down $25 million on orange and another $10 million on an orange super-pac.   So why not go for broke and force your newspaper to endorse him, as well?

In the endorsement, the editorial writers acknowledged concerns about Trump's temperament and fitness for office and urged him to "discover the power of humility."    They added:  “Mr. Trump represents neither the danger his critics claim nor the magic elixir many of his supporters crave.  But he promises to be a source of disruption and discomfort to the privileged, back-scratching political elites for whom the nation’s strength and solvency have become subservient to power’s pursuit and preservation.”

Yes, Adelson gives mega-millions to politicians and probably has as much sway over their support for Israel as any other one person.   How is he not part of those privileged pursuers of power?

2.  Dressed for a funeral?   A writer in the New York Times' "Sunday Styles" section, raised this question about the Trump women at the third debate.   It seems that Melania, Ivanka, and daugher-in-law Lara were all dressed in black.   Never before.   Ivanka and Lara always wear white or light colors;  and, while Melania sometimes wears black, it is always sexy and glamorous, not sedate and funereal like this.    Was this a statement?   Or just an unconscious reflection of what they were all feeling that night?

3.  A while back, Donald made one of those Trump gaffes that are news for a day or two, and then they fade away into the vast swamp.    At a rally, he reminded voters to get out and vote for Trump on "November 28th."    Well, now it turns out there was probably something behind that slip of the tongue.   November 28th is the day that Trump has been called to testify in the trial where former students are suing him and Trump University for fraud.  And the presiding judge is, you guessed it, Judge Gonzalo Curiel, born in Indiana but dissed by Donald Trump as unable to give him a fair trial because his parents are Mexican -- and, you know, the judge can't help being biased against him, because of that wall Donald is going to build.   You know that, right?   It's true.  Believe me.  November is going to be a bad month for Donald.

4.  But let's finish on a bright note:   Something good has come out of that last debate where Donald leaned into the microphone, while Hillary was chiding him about not paying taxes, and said "Such a nasty woman."   The good news is that someone is making money on that.   You can buy online a variety of T-shirts, coffee mugs, sampler pillows, etc. with the proud proclamation that the user is "a nasty woman."    One T-shirt defines the term as:  "an intelligent, confident, hard-working, prepared and experienced woman."    $19.95, plus shipping and handling.

5.  And counting:  14 . . . 13 . . . 12 . . . 11 . . . 10 . . . . 


Monday, October 24, 2016

The Republcians' war against the right to vote

A few years ago, the conservative majority of the  U.S. Supreme Court removed a major section of the Voting Rights Act that had required certain states, with a history of voter discrimination, to get pre-clearance on any change in their voting laws.  Now, in fairness, it should be said that SCOTUS did not necessarily mean that no further oversight was needed.   Their decision suggested that some states have made progress since the Voting Rights Act was passed, and that it was time for Congress to bring the list of states subject to pre-clearance up to date.

However, neither did they include any timetable or requirement that Congress actually act;   it was more suggestion than mandate.

And, of course, they did not take into account that a Republican controlled Congress was not about to do anything about it, because now the majority Republican-controlled state legislatures could slip in some laws that would disadvantage exactly the kinds of voters who tend to vote Democratic.    And that's exactly what they did, some beginning with bills introduced the day after the court's decision took effect.

This is a basic, almost a defining, difference between liberals and conservatives in general about SCOTUS.   Should social conditions and consequences play any role whatsoever in their decisions?

The result is that SCOTUS removed all pre-clearance requirements, and Congress refused to even take up the issue.   It's true that those newly-passed laws can be challenged in court -- and some have been successfully overturned (Texas, North Carolina, among others);   but other laws that would not have made it through Department of Justice pre-clearance are now on the books.

November 8th will be the first presidential election without the long-held Voting Rights Act protections being in place, since it was originally passed.  Here we are, two weeks before the election, with a mishmash of different state laws and voting requirements, leaving much confusion and intimidation among voters.

Indiana is a case in point.    Yes, the state whose governor, Mike Pence, is the Republican Vice Presidential candidate.  Quoting from an article by Ryan Reilly of the Huffington Post:

"Earlier this month, just ahead of Indiana’s voter registration deadline, state police executed a search warrant at the office of an organization that had set out to register black voters in a state with the worst voter turnout in the country.

"Officers conducted their search on the Indiana Voter Registration Project’s headquarters just a few weeks after Republican Secretary of State Connie Lawson sent a letter to state election officials warning that 'nefarious actors are operating' in the Hoosier state and asking them to inform authorities if they received any voter registration forms from the group.

'The letter from Lawson ― who, when she was a state legislator, co-sponsored Indiana’s controversial voter ID law ― had a chilling effect.  It amounted to 'the voter suppression equivalent of an Amber alert,' said Craig Varoga, the president of Patriot Majority USA, a liberal nonprofit group that ran the Indiana Voter Registration Project.

"The publicity surrounding the actions taken by Lawson and Indiana’s state police have cast a shadow over the nonprofits, with many stories accusing them of voter fraud.   Varoga said the Oct. 4 police action prevented the group from registering 5,000 to 10,000 additional voters ahead of Indiana’s Oct. 11 voter registration deadline. He’s worried that clerks won’t count some of the 45,000 applications the group had already collected."


This is an old tactic, and it has nothing to do with actual voter fraud in either registering or voting.   There is no significant evidence of either.   What Republicans look for are minor technical irregularities, like minor differences in how their name is listed compared to, say, driver's license registration (Johnny instead of John, say).  Then they scream "voter fraud."   And accuse the registering organization.

This is what has happened in Georgia and other places, including Indiana.   When voter registration drives are conducted by third party organizations, they are required to return every form that they were given, even ones that may have been partially filled out, then discarded to start over because of some simple mistake.   Or forms that the volunteers recognize are jokes, like someone calling themselves Mickey Mouse.   All of those must be returned.    The reason behind this makes sense:   it assures that drive organizers have to account for all forms;  they can't discard any registrations that are for the party they oppose.

But for unscrupulous, partisan officials in the registration office looking to claim fraud, this is easy to seize on as "evidence."    It sounds like this may have been in play in Indiana.   There is also a technicality in Indiana, involving a little-known requirement that registration workers sign a sworn affidavit whenever they have reason to believe a registration they have handled may be false, fictitious, or fraudulent;   and the penalty for not doing so is charge of perjury to the registration volunteer. 

Because that requirement is not mentioned on the Secretary of State's web site instructions for registration drives, but is mentioned in a guide published by one Indiana county, the officials are saying this Indiana Voter Registration Project workers are in violation of the law.   Imagine the chilling effect such intimidation has, not only on potential voters, but on volunteer registration workers.   It's downright Kafka-esque, essentially shutting down registration efforts about two weeks prior to the deadline.

Secretary of State Lawson tried to present this as reassurance to the Indiana voters of how serious they are about protecting the integrity of the voting process.   But even some fellow Republicans have said she's going too far.  They are concerned that police intimidation of a voter drive aimed at registering black voters won't look good for a state that still has a black eye from passing a law last year that legalized anti-gay discrimination in public businesses.  They should be concerned, especially with their governor on the ticket.

This is one more reason to make this a landslide Democratic victory on November 8th.   First, we must have a Democratic president to appoint more liberals to the Supreme Court.   Second, we must take back control of the Senate, so some progressive legislation has a chance of getting passed.    And third -- let's just go all the way and take back the House while we're at it.   Then we can really get some good stuff accomplished -- even restore pre-clearance to the Voting Rights Act for every state that has passed these voter suppression laws.


Sunday, October 23, 2016

Taking a comedy break from the campaign mania

This has been an exhausting few weeks in politics.   The daily onslaught of new outrages, the hacked leaks of Clinton staff emails, the Donald Trump accusers, the polls, the debate, the Al Smith dinner.   And what ever happened to the scandals of last month and the one before?   The new norm seems to be:  bring on a new scandal (or make one up) to make us forget that last one.   And the one before that.

So I was ready for some diversion on Saturday afternoon.    And fortunately my friends Tom and Barbara had suggested we see the Swedish film, "A Man Called Ove."  

It turned out to be the perfect antidote -- in the words of one critic, a fusion of melodrama and dark comedy.   Ove is a 59 year old curmudgeon, whose grief over his wife's death has curdled into anger, expressed in his tyrannical efforts to enforce neighborhood rules that nobody observes or cares about.  He is alienated from his only friend, and he's been replaced at work by technology and younger minds.   He is at war with everyone, his only respite being daily visits to his wife's grave, where he tells her his woes and says that he will be joining her soon.

But his several suicide attempts are always interrupted by some neighborhood crisis that needs his attention.   And Ove's pride in being a reliable fixer is too great;  he has to respond.   So he undoes the noose around his neck and gets down from the stool he was about to kick over -- to see who is pounding on his door needing help.   One time it turns out to be the new neighbors moving in next door.   The wife is a young Iranian immigrant, mother of two and pregnant with another, and, in Ove's judgment, married to an idiot.   So naturally he is compelled to help. . . .  and again . . . and  . . .

I won't spoil the rest of the story but only say that there is a transformation and a heart-warming message about overcoming grief by opening up to people, about the value of friends and community, and about acceptance of others.

Hollywood would have turned this gentle tragicomedy into another chance for Robert DeNiro to play the vulgar curmudgeon with a heart of gold.   And, while he can be very good at it, the film would have lacked the subtlety that makes this film, Sweden's nominee for Oscar's Best Foreign Language Film. so charming.

I left the theater feeling refreshed, having been moved both to laughter and tears.  I highly recommend seeing "A Man Called Ove." In Atlanta, it's playing at Tara and LeFont Sandy Springs theaters.