Paraphyly is real

SKÁLA Zdenek skala at INCOMA.CZ
Tue Jan 15 17:12:19 CST 2002

Dear all.
If we are saying that one concept (of monophyly, e.g.) is scientifically
better than the other, we are saying (1) that there exists a
(measurable) optimality criterion that can be used for all the relevant
concepts, (2) that the "best" concept reaches (at least local) maximum
rating along this optimality criterion and (3) that we can explicitly
show why is this optimality criterion relevant for this particular
I suspect that cladistics still have not provided us with the points 1-3
(instead we are supplied with vague rhetoric like "most natural
solution" etc.). Perhaps now is the appropriate time and place?
Zdenek Skala

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