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Jun
19
comment Word for winning because the competitors were miraculously all worse
Amusing as it is, I don't think this is really a valid answer to the question. Divine intervention could be responsible for a lot of things other than someone being lucky enough to have no serious competition in a game. And -- barring the theory that everything that happens in the universe is the direct result of God's will -- you could have no serious competition out of shear luck, having nothing to do with divine intervention. There's an overlap, but the two ideas are not at all the same.
Jun
19
comment Word for winning because the competitors were miraculously all worse
@YohannV. Assuming that God is an intelligent being, he wouldn't favor and assist all competitors who believe in him. He'd favor and assist those whose victory furthered his long-term goals. His goals presumably include doing nice things for his followers, but surely God has bigger goals in mind than doling out easy, unearned wins in baseball games. :-)
Jun
19
comment Can you use the same word twice?
"Die a _____ death": Hard to see how else you could say that. I suppose you could say "experience a _____ death" or "suffer a _____ death". As to "lead a ____ life", "lead" and "life" aren't really related. you can lead many things other than a life. Like you can lead a horse to water as long as you don't try to make him drink.
Jun
19
awarded  Nice Answer
Jun
19
comment Can “if”, “while”, “whenever”, “when” recurse deeply? How deeply?
... possible to construct something that would work, but it would have to be hugely complex. Computer languages are trivially simple compared to common English speech. I don't know why you're trying to do this. Say you succeeded, and wrote this BNF that's 10,000 pages long or whatever it would take. What would you do with it? What's the point?
Jun
19
comment Can “if”, “while”, “whenever”, “when” recurse deeply? How deeply?
Seems that the examples you give above show that your BNF has very little relation to what is actually considered good, comprehensible, grammatically correct English. You seem to be saying, "My BNF works, there's just the small detail that it produces lots of sentences that aren't valid English and fails to produce lots of sentences that are", well, hmm, isn't that the definition of "doesn't work"? I strongly suspect that trying to write a BNF for English is hopeless. As others have said, it's just the wrong tool for the job. Natural language is just not that structured. Maybe it' ...
Jun
19
answered Can you use the same word twice?
Jun
17
comment How did phobia ever come to mean hatred?
... and not simply a disagreement about what is best for society, you can prejudice people against your opponents.
Jun
17
comment How did phobia ever come to mean hatred?
@deworde My point, of course, is that even if psychologists did identify a mental illness that involved an irrational fear of guns comparable to agoraphobia, etc,, that for a gun rights group to refer to every gun control bill, and to everyone who called for gun control, as a case of ophlophobia, would be wildly inaccurate. It would be a political propaganda ploy, not a serious effort to help people overcome mental illness. It's not hard imagining someone doing this: if you can establish a pervasive opinion that anyone who disagrees with you is acting out of an irrational fear ...
Jun
16
awarded  Nice Answer
Jun
16
revised How did phobia ever come to mean hatred?
added 185 characters in body
Jun
16
comment How did phobia ever come to mean hatred?
@DanBryant Okay, valid point. Of course the fact that something is said by a psychiatrist doesn't mean that it is not politically motivated. The APA listed homosexuality as a mental illness until 1974, so I don't suppose a gay rights activist will insist that everything ever said by someone with a decree in psychiatry is unquestionably objective and made with no political or social preconceptions. But okay, I'll edit my post.
Jun
16
comment How did phobia ever come to mean hatred?
... probably isn't productive. I think it is a poorly constructed word because analysis of the components would lead one to think it means something completely different from the intended meaning. You apparently think it is a perfectly valid word because, I guess, you see an elision as necessary to avoid making the term too cumbersome. So we disagree. This obviously makes you a macrolessaphobe -- a word I just invented meaning "person with an irrational fear of long words".
Jun
16
comment How did phobia ever come to mean hatred?
@recognizer Well, I think if you leave out the crucial part of the term, the part that is the whole point, then it is a poorly and ambiguously constructed term. Yes, elision is a valid construct of the language, but that doesn't mean you can just leave out whatever you like. Like if I said that I wanted to invent a word meaning "fear of telephones", and then offered "phonophobia", I think that would be a poor choice, as it means "fear of sound" rather than "fear of telephones". I suppose there is no objective standard for what makes a good and valid invented word, so arguing about this ...
Jun
16
comment How did phobia ever come to mean hatred?
@recognizer Sorry if I wasn't clear. Yes, of course the term is not used to mean "fear of sameness". That's what I said. I presume that someone wanted to say "homosexualphobia", but decided that that was too cumbersome, and so they shortened it to "homophobia". But etymologically, that doesn't really make sense. The Greek means "fear of same", which isn't what people use the word to mean at all. I didn't think it was necessary to spell out how the word was coined because I thought that was obvious.
Jun
16
comment How did phobia ever come to mean hatred?
If the National Rifle Association started calling anyone who was in favor of gun control "ophlophobic" (fear of guns), would you say that that is a medical diagnosis, or a political term?
Jun
16
comment How did phobia ever come to mean hatred?
@Josh61 Is that something I need to prove? Read any news story that uses the word. This is like asking me to prove that "gun control" or "civil rights" or "freedom of speech" are political terms. Do you want me to show you news stories in which political activists use the word to describe their opponents, without any indication that these opponents have been examined by a psychiatrist and found to be suffering from a diagnosable mental illness? Surely you have read many such stories. I could do a Google search and find a few if you think that would be helpful.
Jun
16
answered How did phobia ever come to mean hatred?
Jun
15
awarded  Notable Question
Jun
9
comment Is the term “you suck” always considered slang?
Huh, I've never understood "suck" to be obscene or vulgar, just slang. Yes, if you combine it with a word for male sexual organ it becomes vulgar, but you could say that about a lot of words. It may be that it originated from phrases for sexual acts, but many very polite and proper people that I know use the word to mean that something is bad. Like all vulgarities, of course, it's all in the consensus and the context.