I do read those blogs to the left there. Really, I do.
Most of them.
Some of them.
OK, one of them... if I feel up to it.
Mostly, I just rely on my RSS feeder to alert me to something interesting. Like this bit from JP, who's taken a break from his Sopranos fetish just long enough to remove the ball gag, and write a non-gumbah* post:
I received the Pittsburgh Citiparks 2007 Summer Magazine this week. (I don't recall any previous editions, but perhaps it just got tossed in the trash.) I counted no less than seven pictures of Mayor Luke Ravenstahl. There is, in fact, an entire page of nothing but photos of the mayor, including a close-up in which he appears to be throwing out the first pitch at PNC Park. Um, what does that have to do with Citiparks?Strangely enough, I was actually musing on the same thing this morning, as I stood at the refrigerator door, secretly searching for a piece of fruit that hadn't yet crossed over the river Styx, but really staring into the vaccuous eyes of the young mayor on his 311 information card tacked to my 1987 GE icebox with a cow magnet.
Funny how these things work.
I have two feelings on the subject.
First, the obvious reason that Luke is continuing to do this is the residual perception that he is still not the "legitimate" mayor, but merely an "accidental" mayor. By plastering his name on every billboard, brochure, sign, flyer, card, webpage, car, bus, plane, and employee, Luke is merely following in the tradition of the Late Roman Emperors who struck coins with their faces on them to legitimize their rules. In this way, Luke is a Petronius Maximus or a Romulus Augustus and should be treated with all the dignity and respect that they were given.
Second, the even more obvious reason is that Luke is going to be on a continual name recognition campaign, at least until he develops some political capital of his own. The use of his face everywhere reinforces his presence and his connection with the office so that voters subliminally connect him with The City.
Now, the alternative conclusion is that Luke is not looking to remain mayor forever, but is, instead, looking to artificially inflate his capital and cash in, in favor of a more lucrative (and probably less time consuming) political job. Indeed, Luke could be the political equivalent of the '90s Dot-Com bust or the '00s Housing Bubble.
Can't much say what that job would be, however. Still, I would say that a cushy State Senate Seat would look mighty fine for a 20 year old.
* I'm German-Irish...