Since 1986, we have been living in this beautiful city, which many refer to as the Gem of Silicon Valley. There are good reasons why we should consider Milpitas as the Gem of Silicon Valley. To start with, we have some of the best neighbors, and we have the best schools run by the best School Board. We have the best Police Department run by the best Police Chief, and the best Fire Department run by the best Fire Chief. But the accolades almost abruptly end here.
Many of us who moved to this Gem of a City see similar cities in Silicon Valley such as Cupertino, Mountain View, Santa Clara, and Sunnyvale hosting the headquarters or a significant local presence of such worldwide recognized high-tech behemoths as Apple, Amazon, Google, Intel, MicroSoft, Facebook, etc. And we quietly ask ourselves, “Why not Milpitas?” These companies have many very high-paying, high-tech jobs in Engineering, Computer Science, and R&D. And we ask ourselves again, “Why not Milpitas?” Are we supposed to be the Gem of Silicon Valley, or the NIMBY (Not In My Backyard) of Silicon Valley? We seem to prefer spending hours on HWY237 to get to work for these tech giants, rather than having them close at home within walking distance.
The rejection of the La Quinta hotel is one of the shots that reverberates around the business world. The NIMBY Milpitas will not tolerate any suggestion that is Business-Friendly. There are senior executives of the few notable high-tech companies (not at the same status as the Apple, Amazon, or Google crowd) in Milpitas who complained to the Milpitas Chamber of Commerce very recently that Milpitas does not have enough hotels to accommodate a staff of over 200 from all over the U.S. to have a face-to-face meeting if they want to have one. Companies may give serious consideration to moving out of Milpitas, and with them will go some of our high-paying jobs.
I would like to restate that most of our neighbors in Milpitas are extremely nice people—maybe you could not find a better group anywhere else in the world—and everyone wants what is best for Milpitas. But I don’t think spending hours on 237 to get to their high-paying jobs is their interpretation of what is best for Milpitas. However, when people and city officials get commandeered by a horde of well-intentioned—however misinformed, misguided, myopic, and mob-like—people with a medieval, machiavellian mentality, the outcome generally results in NIMBY Milpitas. These are the same ones who like to have unobstructed views of the Bay, the garbage dump, and the sewer system with the 1- or 2-story warehouses on McCarthy Boulevard. “Come to Milpitas for warehouse-type jobs, but don’t you dare destroy our view of anything.”
I applaud those City elected officials and leaders who ignored the hegemony and demands of the horde and stood up for Milpitas, the Gem of the Valley, and voted for La Quinta. Unfortunately, the NIMBY Milpitas Mob won out. And we again ask ourselves, “Why not Milpitas?” Well, 20 years from now, when our other neighborhood cities have the “Life After Google” companies, with AI (Artificial Intelligence) Cryptocosm/Blockchain technology, we will keep asking ourselves, “Why not Milpitas?”
The answer is simple: the NIMBY Milpitas Mob keeps winning each time.