The sleaziness of today’s story that two Stockton men allegedly conspired to hack the e-mails of several city officials, and schemed to plant ”compromising information” in City Manager Bob Deis’s computer to benefit Mayor Anthony Silva politically — words almost fail.
If the allegations are true, then it is a new low in Stockton politics. No mean feat. It takes super-strength sleazeballism to surpass the current benchmarks.
Not only does the alleged plot — and it’s all alleged — call for hacking, in itself an illegal violation of privacy, that would be merely the means to the end: smearing the reputation of an innocent man who has done more to benefit Stockton than the last five councils combined.
That crosses the line from dirty politics to pathology.
And to what end? To advance the political prospects of a mayor blocked not by Deis but by his own staggering political ineptitude. Such an outcome could only hurt Stockton. Mayor Anthony Silva’s career does not merit advancement. It may yet merit recall.
It’s too early to draw many conclusions. But I’ll offer one: such a plot, if it exists, could only come from those deluded souls who have demonized Deis as the problem and not the solution; the master puppeteer and not an official who serves at the pleasure of the council; the barrier to the populist reform of City Hall and not the man who has done more to rid City Hall of special interests than anyone in living memory.
It could only proceed from a mindset that sees the victim as the one to blame and which licenses the victimizer to trample anyone standing in their way. In other words, a criminal mindset.