[Taxacom] Mayr's criticism of the worst cladification

John Grehan jgrehan at sciencebuff.org
Fri Apr 3 11:06:34 CDT 2009

Cladists don't like anything simply because of their 'simplicity'. They
usually like something because it is cladistically supported.

I've not studied the two alternative phylogenetic arrangements mentioned
below, but the main point is that there are two alternatives in
circulation. It may be a matter of personal opinion as to which is
superior. After all, I think the orangutan-hominid evidence is superior
to the chimpanzee-hominid evidence, but the books are going to continue
printing only the chimpanzee-hominid classification. No use crying.

John Grehan

> -----Original Message-----
> From: taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu [mailto:taxacom-

> Strict cladists "like it" because of its simplicity, and yet it is
> doesn't reflect the real history of life at all.  The Five Kingdom
> classification is far superior, and yet books continue to print the
> Three Domain tree in its place.
>       But Mayr does a more eloquent job of criticizing this so-called
> cladification, so here is a link to his 1998 paper:
> http://www.pnas.org/content/95/17/9720.full
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