My comment regarding Phoebe Hearst Cooke (“Phoebe’s side,” April 16) is: It is her money. Patrick Howe’s article mentioned her brother being concerned about prurient interest in her affairs. Perhaps he was worried more about prurient interest in his affairs. Her husband has been dead for what, seven months? Could it be that George is trying to gain control of her fortune? Perhaps the courts should initiate an investigation into his affairs. Why is he so anxious to gain control? That is what this appears to be about: control.
My next question is: What vested interest does the judge and SLO County have in this matter? Why did they agree to hear this? Was it the potential to charge Phoebe Cooke’s estate large amounts of her money to accrue to the county’s benefit? If there are three expert witnesses to say she is incompetent, I am sure there would be three available witnesses to say she is fine, because that is the way of expert witnesses. Pay them enough money and they will say anything, spin the story any way someone wishes.
As for paranoia, who could blame her and say she is wrong? Perhaps refusing to pay for substandard work was acute business acumen rather than incompetence. Perhaps this lady needs a trusted adviser, someone of her choosing, not a jailer as appointed. You take away someone’s control, freedom, and give them a jailer (conservator): I should think a little paranoia would be appropriate. And if her jail is a nice little hotel room, that doesn’t make it any less a jail.
It depends on your point of view, and mine would be the system is colluding with George and the Hearst trust to railroad this lady. There doesn’t seem to be a question that the money is hers. So why is everyone, including SLO County, in such a hurry to gain control of her fortune?