[Taxacom] classifications (was: no subject)

Gurcharan Singh-satyam singhg at satyam.net.in
Sat Apr 4 00:15:22 CDT 2009

To me the problem lies in the fact that we start identifying others as 
phylogenetic taxonomists, evolutionary taxonomists, Linnean taxonomists, 
Naturalists and so on. If we just think that we are systematists 
(taxonomists: and perhaps some one will question why I club the the two 
together) aiming at trying to identify all known species of plants, giving 
them universally agreed names and arrange them based on all available data 
(morphology and molecular data should not used as contradictions but as 
complementing each other) perhaps there won't be need for discussions that 
bring out forcing points of view and not finding the meeting point.

Gurcharan Singh
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Richard Zander" <Richard.Zander at mobot.org>
To: "Mario Blanco" <mblanco at flmnh.ufl.edu>; "TAXACOM" 
<taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>
Sent: Friday, April 03, 2009 9:28 PM
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] classifications (was: no subject)

> Mario:
> I think there is no such thing at a particular level as well, let's all
> agree to disagree. If phylogeneticists produce a phylogenetic
> classification and present it as the best representation using the
> Linnaean system of sister-group relationships, and eliminating
> descendant-ancestor relationships, that's fine. It's a special purpose
> classification like alphabetical classification for ease in accessing
> specimens, artificial hierarchies in keys to speed identification,
> organizations in popular identification manuals for amateur naturalists,
> and so on. But this is not the case with phylogenetic classifications
> because there is now no alternative. Apparently studying evolution is
> now taught to students as restricted to sister-group analysis, but tell
> it to evolutionists. "Allowing some paraphyletic families" is nonsense.
> They exist as products of evolution.
> I stipulate that this would not be a problem if evolutionary taxonomists
> would recognize what is happening and generate alternative
> classifications. I'm working up an alternative paraphyly-safe
> classification for my own group, with vigorous justifications for the
> autophyletic taxa, but it's a drop in the bucket.
> *****************************
> Richard H. Zander
> Voice: 314-577-0276
> Missouri Botanical Garden
> PO Box 299
> St. Louis, MO 63166-0299 USA
> richard.zander at mobot.org
> Web sites: http://www.mobot.org/plantscience/resbot/
> and http://www.mobot.org/plantscience/bfna/bfnamenu.htm
> Non-post deliveries to:
> Missouri Botanical Garden, 4344 Shaw Blvd., St. Louis, MO 63110
> *****************************
> -----Original Message-----
> From: taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
> [mailto:taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu] On Behalf Of Mario Blanco
> Sent: Thursday, April 02, 2009 6:11 PM
> Subject: Re: [Taxacom] classifications (was: no subject)
>   Ken, as a "strict cladist", I do not like classifications that allow
> paraphyletic groups. If I want to see "ancestor-descendant information"
> I can simply consult the latest phylogenetic hypotheses on the group of
> interest, as some have repeatedly said.
>   And, do you really think you can convince everyone (even most people)
> to use a moderately paraphyletic classification like yours? There will
> always be many people like me, who prefer a strictly cladistic
> classification. And there will always be a lot of people that prefer
> much more paraphyletic classifications (e.g., accepting Reptilia), just
> because it is easier for them to remember. That is why you are wrong
> when you say that the APG could "very, very easily make their
> classification almost universally acceptable" by allowing some
> paraphyletic families.
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