cladism's greatest weakness

Ken Kinman kinman at HOTMAIL.COM
Fri Sep 17 08:00:23 CDT 1999

    I don't think you have missed anything.  Great question, which I guess
it is up to Curtis to answer.  Perhaps his undergraduates understand what he
wants them to understand, and I certainly would be reluctant to challenge my
professor even if did disagree (even graduate students can be intimidated by
professors, even if the professor does nothing to cause it).  So I guess
citing an undergraduate's understanding isn't really very relevant.
>The "different nature" of paraphyly at different levels is presented as
>some sort of obvious truth. I must have missed something. Can anyone
>elaborate on this? Surely they are both the results of the same process,
>separated only by time and extinction long after the event?
> >>> Curtis Clark <jcclark at CSUPOMONA.EDU> 09/17 8:32 AM >>>
>At 07:22 PM 9/16/99 -0700, Ken Kinman wrote:
> >     Excellent point.  This speciation process is called "budding" and is
>quite common.   It is probably the true Achilles heel of cladism, even
>though I doubt most cladists realize this weakness.
>Even my undergraduates understand that the paraphyly of the protists and
>reptilia is of a different nature than the paraphyly of a species that
>gives rise to peripheral isolates.

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