Yes, sorry if this wasn't clear. A stationary observer is basically an observer with constant r, theta, and phi Schwazschild coodinates.
In order to qualify as an observer, his worldline must be timelike. (Which is another technial term from special relativity). An photon isn't an observer, for instance.
I don't see why you say it's misguided. Though I think it may be confusing the OP, because Thorne's approach isn't based on the "clock slowing" paradigm.
My basic impression is that the OP is stuck in a Newtonian view of absolute time, and is also interpreting the whole "clock slowing" down thing as some sort of scalar function that modifies how fast absolute time flows at a given position.
And this is just not compatible with special relativity at all (mostly because of the absolute time idea).
At the risk of possibly causing more confusion, Thorne's view is more like saying that the time doesn't really "stop" (as per the stopped time idea), it's just bent to point in a spatial direction.