Hmm. I use it, and find it explaining some really weird stuff CPT, looking out on a universe. You can check out

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cosmic_inflation#Observational_status for some of the things it explains. But you're perfectly correct in that it is a theory, or hypothesis. Based on my own thoughts it fits a place of sorts, where what's 'stable' comes from locality, 'points' interacting, creating and defining dimensions to us. I have no real problems with it so far.

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A standard candle is defined as "celestial objects with well-defined absolute magnitudes which are assumed to not vary with age or distance. Type I and II Cepheids and RR Lyraes are all examples". Stars who we assume to be of the same energy output, aka radiation, no matter where we find them.

"To help understand what is meant by standard candle, we first need to have a basic understanding of how distances are measured in astronomy. For small distances such as from the earth to the moon, lasers are used. Moving further out to Mercury, Venus or Mars, we use radar. Leaving our solar system and measuring to nearby stars, we use semi-annual parallax. And out to 500 parsecs (pc), spacecraft (e.g. Hipparcos) are used with measurements computed trigonometrically.

We refer to these as direct methods of measurement.

At distances greater than 500 pc, the error in the parallax measurement is too great and not usable. Indirect methods are used based on stellar properties such as luminosity,radii, the effective temperature and others. Distances are determined from relationships connecting these properties, including the period-luminosity relation for Cepheid variables. [Illingworth & Clark 2000]

While it is difficult to find a ‘pure’ definition for STANDARD CANDLE, reliable sources provide enough information to define it as saying there is no single object used for a Standard Candle; there are collections of stellar objects with known luminosities that allow them to be used to determine distances. The Standard Candle object used depends on the distance being measured. The brightest Cepheids, for example, can be seen out to about 60 megaparsecs (Mpc). For distances of 150 and 250 Mpc, red and blue supergiants can be used, respectively. For distances even greater, a galaxy’s HII region or brightness of its globular clusters are used. Beyond 900 Mpc, astronomers rely on supernovae. In all measurements, as the distance increases, the accuracy decreases. [Kaufmann & Freedman 1999, Illingworth & Clark 2000]"

From

STANDARD CANDLES by RONALD E. MICKLE Denver, Colorado 80005 =

And one more, for those getting stuck on where parsecs come from.

http://csep10.phys.utk.edu/astr162/lect/distances/units.htmlLight years are a easier definition to us laymen