PhyloCode: The real problem...again

Thomas Lammers lammers at VAXA.CIS.UWOSH.EDU
Wed Jul 9 10:43:50 CDT 2003

At 11:35 AM 7/9/03 -0400, Ron Gatrelle wrote:
 >>They may present us as the model-T, but we need to present them as the
Edsel.  The Edsel looked great coming off the production line - but what a

You'll need a better analogy, as the Edsel failed through no intrinsic
fault of its own.  It was introduced during the 1958 business recession,
which hit cars in the upper mid-priced field (e.g., DeSoto, Buick)
especially hard.

To anyone who things this PhyloCode foolishness has even an inkling of
merit, I suggest you read:

W. H. Camp & C. L. Gilly, Brittonia 4: 323-385 (1943).
W. H. Camp, Brittonia 7: 113-127 (1951).

Many folks forget that an original goal of biosystematics was to "apply to
these units a sysyem of nomenclature adequate to the task of conveying
precise information regarding their defined limits, relationships,
variability, and dynamic structure."

The PhyloCode deserves to be right where Camp & Gilly's proposals are: an
amusingly quaint oddity TOTALLY FORGOTTEN in the rubbish heap of history.

Thomas G. Lammers, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor and Curator of the Herbarium (OSH)
Department of Biology and Microbiology
University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
Oshkosh, Wisconsin 54901-8640 USA

e-mail:       lammers at
phone:      920-424-1002
fax:           920-424-1101

Plant systematics; classification, nomenclature, evolution, and biogeography
of the Campanulaceae s. lat.

"Today's mighty oak is yesterday's nut that stood his ground."
                                                               -- Anonymous

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