Charlie : The guru I never met

Yesterday (Nov 28, 2023), the world lost a giant of investing and clear thinking: Charlie Munger. While I never had the privilege of meeting him in person, his wisdom, wit, and down-to-earth approach to life have had a profound impact on me. His speeches and writings have been a guiding light, teaching me not just about investing, but about life itself.

Charlie possessed a rare combination of intelligence, practicality, and brutal honesty. He never sugarcoated his words, always offering his insights with clarity and directness. One quote that particularly resonates with me comes from his 2007 commencement speech at USC. Reflecting on choices in life, he said:
“Let me use a little inversion now. What will really fail in life? What do we want to avoid? Some answers are easy. For example, sloth and unreliability will fail. If you’re unreliable it doesn’t matter what your virtues are, you’re going to crater immediately. So, faithfully doing what you’ve engaged to do should be an automatic part of your conduct.”

These words underscore the importance of basic principles like hard work, integrity, and commitment. Charlie understood that success wasn’t built on complex theories, but on a foundation of solid values and consistent action.

Charlie’s passing is a significant loss, but his legacy will undoubtedly continue to inspire and educate generations to come. His wisdom will remain a guiding force for those seeking to navigate the complexities of life and investing with integrity and a clear mind.

Rest in peace, Charlie. You will be deeply missed.