Mountain Views News, Sierra Madre Edition [Pasadena] Saturday, July 21, 2018

MVNews this week:  Page B:2




Mountain Views-News Saturday, July 21, 2018 

Jeff’s Book Pics By Jeff Brown



If a friend or family member has asked you 
to serve as trustee for their trust upon their 
death, you should feel honored—this means 
they consider you among the most honest, 
reliable, and responsible people they know. 
However, being a trustee is not only a great 
honor, it’s also a major responsibility. The job can 
entail a wide array of complex duties, and you’re 
both ethically and legally required to effectively 
execute those functions or face significant 
liability. Given this, agreeing to serve as trustee 
is a decision that shouldn’t be made lightly, and 
you should thoroughly understand exactly what 
the role requires before giving your answer. 
Of course, a trustee’s responsibility can 
vary enormously depending on the size of the 
estate, the type of trust involved, and the trust’s 
specific terms and instructions. But every trust 
comes with a few core requirements, and here 
I’ll highlight some of the key responsibilities. 
First off, serving as trustee does NOT require 
you to be an expert in law, finance, taxes, or any 
other field related to trust administration. In fact, 
it’s almost always a good idea for a trustee to seek 
assistance from professionals in these fields, and 
funding to pay for such services should already 
be set aside for this in the trust. 


Adhere to the trust’s terms

 Every trust is unique, and a trustee’s obligations 
and powers depend largely on what the trust 
allows for, so you should first carefully review the 
trust’s terms. The trust document outlines all the 
specific duties you’ll be required to fulfill as well 
as the appropriate timelines and discretion you’ll 
have for fulfilling these tasks.

 Some trusts are relatively straightforward, with 
few assets and beneficiaries, so the entire job can 
be completed within a few weeks or months. 
Others, especially those containing numerous 
assets and minor-aged beneficiaries, can take 
decades to completely fulfill. 

 Act in the best interests of the beneficiaries
Trustees have a fiduciary duty to act in the best 
interest of the named beneficiaries at all times, 
and they must not use their position for personal 
gain. Moreover, they cannot commingle their 
own funds and assets with those of the trust, nor 
may they profit from the position beyond the 
fees set aside to pay for the trusteeship.

 If the trust involves multiple beneficiaries, the 
trustee must balance any competing interests 
between the various beneficiaries in an impartial 
and objective manner for the benefit of them all. 
In some cases, grantors try to prevent conflicts 
between beneficiaries by including very specific 
instructions about how and when assets should 
be distributed, and if so, you must follow these 
directions exactly as spelled out. 

 However, some trusts leave asset distribution 
decisions up to the trustee’s discretion. If so, when 
deciding how to make distributions, the trustee 
must carefully evaluate each beneficiary’s current 
needs, future needs, other sources of income, 
as well as the potential impact the distribution 
might have on the other beneficiaries. Such duties 
should be taken very seriously, as beneficiaries 
can take legal action against trustees if they can 
prove he or she violated a fiduciary duty and/or 
mismanaged the trust. 


Invest trust assets prudently

 Many trusts contain interest-bearing securities 
and other investment vehicles. If so, the trustee is 
responsible not only for protecting and managing 
these assets, they’re also obligated to make them 
productive—which typically means selling 
and/or investing assets to generate income. 
In doing so, the trustee must exercise 
reasonable care, skill, and caution when 
investing trust assets, otherwise known as the 
“prudent investor” rule. The trustee should 
always consider the specific purposes, terms, 
distribution requirements, and other aspects of 
the trust when meeting this standard.

 Unless specifically spelled out in the trust 
terms, it will be up to the trustee’s discretion to 
determine the investment strategies that are best 
suited for the trust’s goals and beneficiaries. But 
trustees should not invest trust assets in overly 
speculative or high-risk stocks and/or other 
investment vehicles. A financial advisor familiar 
with trusts can help guide the trustee in following 
sound and reasonable investment strategies.

 Next week, I’ll continue with part two in this 
series explaining the scope of powers and duties 
that come with serving as trustee. 

 Dedicated to empowering your family, 
building your wealth and defining your legacy,


A local attorney and father, Marc Garlett is on a 
mission to help parents protect what they love most. 
His office is located at 55 Auburn Avenue, Sierra 
Madre, CA 91024. Schedule an appointment to 
sit down and talk about ensuring a legacy of love 
and financial security for your family by calling 
626.355.4000 or visit for 
more information.

PRESIDENT EVER by Rick Wilson 

A respected, long-time Republican 
strategist, ad-maker, and contributor for 
The Daily Beast, skewers the disease that 
is destroying the conservative movement 
and burning down the GOP: Trumpism.
In the book, political campaign strategist 
and commentator Rick Wilson brings his 
darkly funny humor and biting analysis to 
the absurdity of American politics in the age 
of Trump. Wilson mercilessly exposes the 
damage Trump has done to the country, to 
the Republican Party he served for decades, 
and to the conservative movement that 
has abandoned its principles for the worst 
President in American history.No left-
winger, Wilson is a lifelong conservative 
who delivers his withering critique of Trump 
from the right. A leader of the Never Trump 
movement, he warns his own party of the 
political catastrophe that leaves everyone 
involved with Trump with reputations 
destroyed and lives in tatters.Wilson 
unblinkingly dismantles Trump’s deceptions 
and the illusions to which his supporters 
cling, shedding light on the guilty parties who 
empower and enable Trump in Washington 
and the news media. He calls out the race-
war dead-enders who hitched a ride with 
Trump, the alt-right basement dwellers who 
worship him, and the social conservatives 
who looked the other way.Everything 
Trump Touches Dies deftly chronicles the 
tragicomic Trump story from the early 
campaign days through the shock of election 
night, to the inconceivable trainwreck of 
Trump’s first year. Rick Wilson provides 
not only an insightful analysis of the Trump 
administration, but also an optimistic path forward 
for the GOP, the conservative movement, and the 
country. Combining insider political analysis, blunt 
truths, and black humor, Everything Trump Touches 
Dies is perfect for those on either side of the aisle who 
need a dose of unvarnished reality, a good laugh, a 
strong cocktail, and a return to sanity in American 

FREEDOM by Thomas E. Ricks 

A New York Times Book Review Notable Book of 
2017.A dual biography of Winston Churchill and 
George Orwell, who preserved democracy from the 
threats of authoritarianism, from the left and right 
alike.Both George Orwell and Winston Churchill 
came close to death in the mid-1930’s—Orwell shot 
in the neck in a trench line in the Spanish Civil War, 
and Churchill struck by a car in New York City. If 
they’d died then, history would scarcely remember 
them. At the time, Churchill was a politician on the 
outs, his loyalty to his class and party suspect. Orwell 
was a mildly successful novelist, to put it generously. 
No one would have predicted that by the end of the 
20th century they would be considered 
two of the most important people in 
British history for having the vision 
and courage to campaign tirelessly, 
in words and in deeds, against the 
totalitarian threat from both the left 
and the right. In a crucial moment, they 
responded first by seeking the facts of 
the matter, seeing through the lies and 
obfuscations, and then they acted on 
their beliefs. Together, to an extent not 
sufficiently appreciated, they kept the 
West’s compass set toward freedom as 
its due north.It’s not easy to recall now 
how lonely a position both men once 
occupied. By the late 1930’s, democracy 
was discredited in many circles, and 
authoritarian rulers were everywhere 
in the ascent. There were some who 
decried the scourge of communism, but 
saw in Hitler and Mussolini “men we 
could do business with,” if not in fact 
saviors. And there were others who saw 
the Nazi and fascist threat as malign, 
but tended to view communism as the 
path to salvation. Churchill and Orwell, 
on the other hand, had the foresight to 
see clearly that the issue was human 
freedom—that whatever its coloration, 
a government that denied its people 
basic freedoms was a totalitarian 
menace and had to be resisted.In the 
end, Churchill and Orwell proved 
their age’s necessary men. The glorious 
climax of Churchill and Orwell is the 
work they both did in the decade of 
the 1940’s to triumph over freedom’s 
enemies. And though Churchill played 
the larger role in the defeat of Hitler and 
the Axis, Orwell’s reckoning with the 
menace of authoritarian rule in Animal 
Farm and 1984 would define the stakes of the Cold 
War for its 50-year course, and continues to give 
inspiration to fighters for freedom to this day. Taken 
together, in Thomas E. Ricks’s masterful hands, their 
lives are a beautiful testament to the power of moral 
conviction, and to the courage it can take to stay true 
to it, through thick and thin.

THE LOST CONTINENT (Wings of Fire, Book 11) 

by Tui T. Sutherland 

For centuries there have been rumors of another 
continent on the dragons’ planet -- another land 
far across the ocean, populated by tribes of dragons 
very different from those we know. But there’s never 
been any evidence, and most dragons dismissed the 
rumors as fairy tales.Until now.Because it turns out 
the stories are true.Age Range: 8 - 12 years Grade 
Level: 3 - 7.Tui T. Sutherland is the author of the 
New York Times and USA Today bestselling Wings 
of Fire series, the Menagerie trilogy, and the Pet 
Trouble series, as well as a contributing author to 
the bestselling Spirit Animals and Seekers series (as 
part of the Erin Hunter team).The 3 reviews are from 

All Things By Jeff Brown


While the world becomes more and more aware of 
plastic pollution, a group of 5,000 fishermen who 
rely on the “Mother Sea” to survive have taken it 
upon themselves to clean up the oceans – and use 
the piles of waste to repair their roads and create 
jobs. For a while, Xavier Peters and his peers had 
simply tossed all the trash back into the water, but 
later, realizing the futility, began hauling it back 
to land. So far, they have collected a whopping 65 
metric tons worth of trash. The Dept.for Women’s 
Empowerment, then hired an all-female crew to 
run the new recycling facility and sort through 
the plethora of assorted plastics. Not only has 
the entire town embraced the initiative, the 
innovative solution has spread to other seaside 
communities in the area, and the fishermen have 
adopted a leading role in helping them convert the 
plastic into dollars. 

Read us online at:




Real Life Tips from LIfe's Instruction Manual

When working properly, 
the immune system is 
responsible for keeping 
the body healthy and 
protecting from foreign 
invaders. Having a 
strong, well-functioning 
immune system is vital to 
functioning in everyday 
life. It helps our physical 
and mental body and shapes our emotional disposition 
in the world. 

 Our immune system is comprised of many 
parts working together -- glands, immune organs, 
hormones and other biochemicals plus one 
underlying, more subtle, vital energy reserve called 
Ojas. Ojas is like the glue that holds everything 
together and one of the three vital essences -- 
immunity, vitality, and positive stability. Besides 
the risk of actual diseases of the immune system, 
the amount of stress that we are under also greatly 
affects and depletes this vital energy reserve and 
the physical body. It leaves us subject to overeating 
and, without time to unwind or when in worry or 
fear, it disconnects us spiritually. Physically, the 
adrenal glands become overtaxed by continuous 
stress, as they overwork to respond.

 Yoga offers some real help when it comes to boosting 
the immune system and staying healthy. On a basic 
note, yogic movement with conscious, intentional 
breathing reduces stress. In most classes, (not all!) the 
student gets to have an experience of calm or feeling 
“ok.” The more often we can have this experience of 
being in a calm and balanced state of mind, the better. 
It activates the parasympathetic nervous system 
and helps to combat the stress response state. Yoga 
practiced in silence and other practices that facilitate 
withdrawal of the senses (or pratyahara) are essential 
for building our vital energy reserve. Along with a 
healthy, easily digestible diet, this has an impact on 
the immune system as a whole. A strong body and 
mind mean that we are protected from illness while 
allowing room for us to weather the ups and downs of 
life with greater ease. 

 Make yoga a regular part of your life and watch 
your health improve! Make your own discoveries, 
and connect with me: 


Keely Totten, 

E-RYT 500 

Yogini, Educator, Mentor 

Lori A. Harris


You have got to stand up for your dream; no one 
else can do it for you. In the face of all difficulties 
and against all the odds, it is imperative that we stay 
tuned in to our desires and allow them to direct our 
steps and our lives. There is a legend of a warrior 
that is recounted by Napolean Hill in his book, 
Think and Grow Rich:

 “A long while ago, a great warrior faced a situation 
which made it necessary for him to make a decision 
which insured his success on the battlefield. He was 
about to send his armies against a powerful foe, 
whose men outnumbered his own. He loaded his 
soldiers into boats, sailed to the enemy’s country, 
unloaded soldiers and equipment, then gave the 
order to burn the ships that had carried them. 
Addressing the men before the first battle, he said, 
“You see the boats going up in smoke. That means 
that we cannot leave these shores unless we win! 
We now have no choice—we win—or we perish!”

 Those soldiers won, as they had no choice and 
in doing so they came alive. What does it mean to 
burn the boat? Decades ago I wanted to be a lawyer 
more than anything. I was unwilling to wait until 
a time it was more convenient or when it might be 
easier. I had a burning desire. There was nothing 
to indicate that I would be successful. I had no 
plan to pay for my living expenses or school, but 
I would not be deterred. I gave up my apartment 
and moved to another city. I rented a room and 
shared a bathroom with a man I didn't know. I did 
not have a plan, but I did have a dream, and that 
dream fueled me more than anything. I was willing 
to go into uncertain terrain, even though my future 
seemed unclear. People told me to wait, to delay, 
to save my money and then return with a cushion. 
I said, no and pushed forward. There were times 
when I didn't know how I would eat or pay my rent, 
but I stuck with it. I am so glad that I did because I 
learned just how resilient I am and it created a firm 
foundation for the rest of my life. I learned how to 
take a step, even when I am afraid. I look back at 
that time in my life and see places where I could 
have pushed myself further, but I can only see that 
now. I couldn't have seen it 
then. I also know that I can 
recover from a mistake, but 
only if I am willing to try. 

 I allowed myself to be 
pulled into the feeling of the 
excitement of crossing into 
the bar of justice, addressing 
the court and speaking to juries. It is such a glorious 
feeling, and not everyone gets to do that. There are 
thousands of lawyers in California, but being a trial 
lawyer is a unique experience, and there was no 
way I was going to let fear stop me. I was more 
afraid not to try than I was of failing. 

 Guess what happened once I started, once I tried. 
Everything came together. The school created a 
financial aid package that I could handle, while 
friends and family pinched in too. None of that 
could have happened if I hadn't tried. I had to 
succeed because I didn't have a plan B. 

 Living from your Core Desired Feelings requires 
you to stand up for yourself in ways that you never 
have before. You're going to need to talk to yourself 
differently and to entertain the possibility. 

 You will have to give some "ish" up too.

 It will require you to ignore what others will 
think to stop you. You will have to tell your fear 
to shut the hell up and keep going. Sometimes you 
will have to keep going because you have burned 
the boat behind you. 

 We are always evolving. We are never going to 
stop wanting because we are alive. We want this 
breath and the next one and the one after that. We 
should never stop dreaming. To get to your best 
life, give up good enough, go ahead a try excellent. 
When the choices are good, better, best...Take the 
BEST, it's your birthright.

 So now I do this coaching because I want more 
people to experience living wildly fulfilling lives, 
not sometime off in the future, right now.

 It is so exciting to step into an active role in 
creating a life worth living. The joy is in taking a 
step, and then another and another.

Mountain Views News 80 W Sierra Madre Blvd. No. 327 Sierra Madre, Ca. 91024 Office: 626.355.2737 Fax: 626.609.3285 Email: Website: