|Mayor Philip Levine is one of South |
Florida's more modest politicians.
Boys on the Bus, by Timothy Crouse.
What It Takes, by Richard Ben Cramer.
Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail, by Hunter S. Thompson.
If you're a political junkie, you no doubt recognize those titles as examples of modern political campaign reportage.
Now comes word of another book about a recent political campaign - one that's destined to take its place on your bookshelf right next to those other classics of political reporting.
This morning, Miami Beach's egotistical, millionaire populist mayor, Philip Levine, unveiled his contribution to modern political campaign literature: a modestly titled magnum opus he calls, "The Journey, Levine for Mayor Campaign 2013."
|Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine signs copies of his book,|
"The Journey," at Manolo's in North Beach.
(Click images to enlarge)
I can't find the book on Amazon, so I'm guessing this is one of those self-published things. But self-publishing a sumptuous coffee table book, jam-packed with color photos of yourself would be so out of character for a guy who spent $2,000,000 of his own money - or about $355 per vote - to
But Levine, despite spending all that money, won "the election with less than half a point over the 50% mark in a four-way battle where he outspent the No. 2 runner up, former Commissioner Michael Gongora, about 10 to 1," writes political blogger Elaine de Valle.
Levine posted pictures of himself on Facebook, signing copies of the book for constituents at an event this morning in North Beach.
Blogger de Valle, recently named by Miami New Times as Miami's best blogger, left this comment under one of the photos:
De Valle also points out that during the campaign, Levine "derided [opponent Steve] Berke for what he said was a fake waste-of-time campaign that was really a gimimck for the sake of a 'reality show.'"
"Well, who has got the gimmick now?," de Valle asks rhetorically.
De Valle asked Berke for his reaction to the release of the book. Here's part of his response:
I think the mayor should have called his vanity publication; "The Checkbook: How Philip Levine bought the Miami Beach Mayoralty in 2013."
Ultimately, Philip Levine is a shameless self-promoter. He is constantly bragging on his Facebook page about the 'good works' he is doing, while using everyone from Miami Beach lifeguards to the MBPD to enhance his image. He went to the VFW on Memorial Day and stepped up to unveil the new mural even though he wasn't invited to do so by the organizers -- it was supposed to be done just by the old war veterans. But this is the Levine way.
From lifeguards to law enforcement officers to true American heroes, the mayor rides their coattails for his own glory.
Random Pixels: Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine is a Dickhead