Ever notice that some things are not quite what they appear to be? This is the root of all magic. Deception is the primary objective. What you see and what you think you see is the intent of the magician. Deception is performed with skill.
Even simple tricks can be fascinating and the better the illusion, the more fascinated we are. Then, on occasion, the performer reveals their secret of how the illusion is performed. However, serious magicians protect their “secrets” as if they were gold.
At the root of the magician’s sleight of hand is distraction. Draw the attention away from the actual trick to create the illusion. It takes patience, timing and practice.
While you might think that magicians are relegated to the stage, performing for an audience, there are magicians in all walks of life including industry, entertainment and even politics.
Pulling back the curtain of Santa Clara politics, you would have to acknowledge that Mayor Lisa Gillmor is a magician at what she does and has done. Gillmor has served on Santa Clara council for nearly 30 years, making it through elections and appointments that are unequaled by any local office holder.
While her early years were centered on community objectives like building the soccer park, they have expanded to include an agreement with the Related Companies which ties up Santa Clara’s golf course. Along the way in this process, Gillmor and her council majority applied eminent domain against David’s Restaurant, a twenty-year tenant. The first use of this magical power ever applied to a private facility in Santa Clara.
Related Companies is one of the mystical mysteries in town. Gillmor’s council magic allowed Related to tie up nearly 200 acres of Santa Clara property without a deposit, no payments, and after a decade, it remains untouched and undeveloped.
Gillmor has proven she is a political magician. It is most likely she influenced the selection of the Grand Jury, the focus of their report targeting the Santa Clara council majority which in turn was critical of their numerous meetings with the SF 49ers.
As the Wizard of Oz once said, “Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain!”
In the case of Santa Clara, the woman behind the curtain may be deceiving you into believing she is much more than the average person doing everything she can to hold on to her power.