Words change meaning on intention. This was an extremely high profile situation in which it was used in a derogatory fashion. She used it in the context of same-sex marriage. She was being evasive on answering about her opinion about same-sex marriage and it is in that context she used the phrase “sexual preference”. If you refer to sexual preference in the same area as same-sex marriage and you already are known to be against gay marriage, it is not rocket science to know the dog whistling at play there. That nifty video of all the other people using the phrase in an ENTIRELY DIFFERENT context, were not using it as a dog whistle but she was. Could Merriam Webster have made that change sooner. Sure they could have. But they didn’t. They made it after this event. Was this the first time making this change was ever on the list of things-to-do? I highly doubt it. But was it the straw? likely.

Words change meaning on
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It was a common term when I was growing up; when I was little; there were a number of significant American cults with charismatic leaders that were dangerous to themselves and the public that were being broken up. They weren’t just alternative religions but they were dangerous. It wasn’t until later that I’d considered conspiracy theories on their own as something that spread outside of an organized or semi-organized context

It was a common … [read full article]


I _do_ JUMP to Conclusions, particularly a 77 page paper. I’ll give the name of it at the end: Conclusions All of the theories we have considered contain some useful features that need to be included in a definitive theory of life (Fig. 49), but all lack some that are important. In particular, none of them incorporate any mechanism of regulation, or any other mechanism to prevent a self-organizing system from growing until it forms a tar (Section 3.1.8). In extreme cases a real living organism may starve to death, or die for some other reason, but, apart from a cancer, which is not a self-organized system, it never forms a tar or otherwise disorganized state. We have not provided all the answers in this review, but we hope that we have pointed to the direction that future research needs to take in the hope of arriving at a definitive theory of life. There are various courses that future research may take: 1. Each individual researcher may a choose a preferred theory from the current ones and try to extend it. That is essentially what has happened until now, and we do not believe that it is the best way forward. 2. One may try to incorporate all the points in Fig. 49 into a single theory, after first identifying and eliminating any logical inconsistencies. The main points that we see are the following: (a) Construction of a membrane needs to be described explicitly, not just left for future development. (b) Thermodynamic requirements need to be satisfied explicitly. For a system at the origin of life it may be sufficient to suppose a supply of energy-rich nutrients, but a more long-term system certainly needs to harness gradients across boundaries. (c) It is not enough to have a cycle labelled “information cycle”: there must be a clear mechanism for collecting, storing and using the information. (d) Any living system must be closed to efficient causation: the catalysts (apart from metal ions) must be produced by the organism in such a way that infinite regress is avoided. (e) There must be regulation of the metabolism, so that organisms cannot grow indefinitely, and metabolites are produced only as needed. 3. One should identify if there are other essential characteristics not mentioned in Fig. 49 that need to be incorporated. We are not aware of essential characteristics apart from metabolic regulation that are missing from all of the current theories. 4. The really adventurous could start with a completely clean plate and develop a new theory that is not derived from any of the existing ones. Contrasting theories of life: Historical context, current theories. In search of an ideal theory Athel Cornish-Bowden María Luz Cárdenas 2019

I _do_ JUMP to
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