[Taxacom] molecular nonsense?

Thomas G. Lammers lammers at uwosh.edu
Thu Nov 6 09:28:11 CST 2008

At 08:49 AM 11/6/2008, John Grehan wrote:
>Am I the only one on this list that thinks this molecular stuff is nutty?

In and of itself, no, I don't consider the data nutty.  It is data like any 
other; data is data.  But it has to be used intelligently, not slavishly 
nor sloppily.

Ever since molecular biology became relatively easy to do, everyone and his 
uncle is doing it.  In the words of Henry Gregor Felsen, "A fool with 
enough money can buy anything he wants; however, he is no less a 
fool."  Some workers have the biological background and expertise and 
insight and discretion to use molecularly data intelligently, some simply 
do not.  A tool is only as strong as the workman who wields it.

Your current approach in this orangophilic crusade of yours is likely a 
smart one.  Look at the data, look at the original studies and see what 
they actually say.  That's what science is about: repeatability and 
scrutiny, peer review.  I have no dog in this fight, but I am always 
interested to see facts and sound methodology win out over wishful thinking 
and sloppiness.

Thomas G. Lammers, Ph.D.

Associate 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 uwosh.edu
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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