Stockdale On Stoicism


Biographical sketch

Part I: The Stoic Warrior’s Triad

Part II: Master Of My Fate

Become bigger than your circumstances.

No matter what.

15 responses to “Stockdale On Stoicism



    God Bless him, that’s an impressive photo of a Navy guy.


  2. I’ll second the God bless him. CW3 “Cheif” Smith was not much of a political man, but I can remember how venom spitting angry he was when the MSM made the patriot pictured above into a charactature, a crazy old man. My father gave 25 years in 2 branches and he looked up to this man…..that folks is all I need to know.

  3. Alfred E. Neuman

    Reblogged this on The Lynler Report.

  4. Let’s go next weekend — I will be officially out of school and ready for the summer adventures to begin. Tonight we’re going to Toastmasters again in Sarasota, and tomorrow I’m taking a NOW member to lunch. Sunday I want to go to mimosa brekkie just to celebrate being alive. Want to join me?

    There is a moratorium from Pamela on all of my work. She refuses to showcase anything I do — can women hold a grudge or what?

    I’ve applied for a position with Truth Revolt, I will forward you my cover letter.

  5. You mean that stoicism is like the understanding of, and the appreciation of, an event or time that everyone, but everyone dogpiled on to pan and carp about, but that few participated in, and you got the best part of, but almost no one else did? Remember, Stockdale was in that thing we don’t mention any more, and a prisoner, so, he was obviously a dupe, a stooge, a tool, and no honor can attach to it, and it was all wrong, wrong, wrong! Sarcasm, off. I love hearing people carry on about stuff they know nothing of, and people they are unfamiliar with, as they spray liquid shit onto their lives, and pronounce everyone but them stupid. Adm. Stockdale was a man in the definition of what a man actually is. A stoic, a patriot, a winner, not given to meanderings about the meaning of it all, but a man who knew his own mind, and knew what honor really is. Loyalty to the truth. A giant casting a shadow over the hippies standing there with their flowers, and the pieces of shit whining about the politics and the purpose of it. And all the yellow bastards who couldn’t quite make the trip, or sweat the big drop, but know all about everything, except courage.

    • Jim Klein

      “…a winner, not given to meanderings about the meaning of it all, but a man who knew his own mind, and knew what honor really is. Loyalty to the truth.”

      Damn, that’s so good it’s nearly poetic. Every real businessman understands this—it’s not the thinking; it’s the implementation.


    • Sean, again, +10.

  6. Anyone interested in reading more of Adm. Stockdale’s work should get a copy of “Thoughts of a Philosophical Fighter Pilot”. It is a wonderful collection of his speeches, essays, and comments about him from other folks.

  7. Comrade X

    “Later, after discovering that some prisoners had died during torture, he slashed his wrists to demonstrate to his captors that he preferred death to submission.”

    Sounds to me like:

    Death before slavery!

    Thanks CA, I’ve got my hard copies for my weekend reading.

  8. Thanks so much for these links on Stoicism. They do so much to give us perspective.

    For example, I grow weary of all the complaining and fear surrounding gun control. Why? What are people going to do, obey these laws? They have to CHOOSE to obey them. If they choose not to, then why worry about such legislative machinations? I sometimes think the fear surrounding this is the implicit recognition that the complainers know they will submit, even to the extent of turning their guns in, when it comes down to brass tacks. Perhaps they’d be better off getting control of their fear, rather than running around trying to lobby and beg scumbags and lowlifes.

    • One thing I cannot understand, is that Stockdale KNEW the beginning of the war was a complete fraud, yet continued on anyway. This does not sound like honorable behavior to me.

    • Jim Klein

      Great point. I never understood what the “issue” is about, and still don’t. I mean really…acquire a tool for your self-defense and then turn it over when you need to defend yourself? What kind of lunacy is that?

      And then of course, there’s this. Registration IS confiscation, separated only by a period of time.

      “lobby and beg scumbags and lowlifes.” Lol…genius strategy, eh?

  9. “You must never confuse faith that you will prevail in the end – which you can never afford to lose – with the discipline to confront the most brutal facts of your current reality, whatever they might be.”
    Vice Admiral James Bond Stockdale, USN

  10. Comrade X

    “..understanding that the Stoic….always keeps separate files in his mind for: those things which are “up to him” and those things which “are not up to him”…

    …The only good or evil that means anything are right in your heart; within your will, within your power, where it’s up to you…

    “When a man who has set his will neither on dying nor upon living at any cost, comes into the presence of the tyrant, what is there to prevent him from being without fear? Nothing.”

    …..but be honest with yourself. Don’t say you had to do anything just because you are threatened with death. You simply decided it was better to comply. It was your will that compelled you. Refuse to want to fear and you start acquiring a constancy of character that makes it impossible for another to do you wrong. Threats have no effect unless you fear.

    ….Controlling your emotions can be empowering.
    Your inner self is what you make it.

    What is the fruit of all these doctrines?

    Tranquility, Fearlessness, and Freedom.”

    Death before slavery!

  11. The Jews willingly submitting to the ovens were stoic, were they not?

    Getting on your knees peacefully to be shot in the head is stoic, is it not?

    Watching your fellow brothers heads explode, peacefully submitting to those same evil doers your property, and then yourself to a cage is rather stoic as well, is it not?

    So, as long as I don’t show emotion, fight, care, and am willing to submit to death, then that means I am strong, that all is good, that I win. That sounds like a tyrants dream to me, if I’m not mistaken. Hmmm. Interesting.