[Taxacom] Reasons for Hominidae, pongidae, and Panidae

Kenneth Kinman kennethkinman at webtv.net
Mon Dec 20 00:43:57 CST 2010

Hi Robin,
        I totally agree with you that some taxa are oversplit simply
because they are sometimes overstudied (to the detriment of other taxa).
Even as a mammalogist myself, I think we would be better off with a
better balance (more entomologists or protistologists, and fewer
mammalogists and ornithologists).  Governments are spending way too much
money researching bears and wolves (who probably are tired of being
continually darted, tagged, and chased in helicopters), while whole
families of invertebrates could be going extinct due to neglect.  And
within entomology itself, probably too much emphasis on butterflies
versus more poorly studied taxa.  A better balance could easily be
found, even though humans in general tend to be more interested in
mammals, birds, and butterflies.  
        What I find most appalling is the amount of money spent on
digging up and preparing dinosaurs (the dead ones) compared to
researching many living taxa that are not popular at all.  It is
understandable, given the public's fascination with them, but it is
still tragic.  But even more tragic is the public's overall fascination
with non-scientific things like sports, the funding of which completely
dwarfs that devoted to biology.  Billions of people seem totally
addicted to sports television, but only a small fraction seem to give a
damn about things like the environment and biological diversity.  Much
of humanity (especially in the world's burgeoning urban centers) have
totally lost touch with nature.  The movies and press seem to make
dinosaurs more deserving of funding than living taxa.  That is truly
sad, that so many seem to care more about learning about petrified
dinosaurs bones than living taxa that are imperiled.      
      So what we really need is to divert the millions of dollars paid
to many individual professional athletes each year (who are basically
just overpaid entertainers) into biological research instead (not to
mention Wall-Streeters who endlessly play money games in their
computers).  And the hundreds of millions of viewers watching those
sport shows would be better going out and getting some exercise instead
of munching on junk food and yelling at the television set from their
P.S.  By the way, who was the idiot who dreamed up the idea of putting
edible gold on food.  Anybody who pays exhorbitant prices to put gold on
their food (and then poop it out into their toilets) are spoiled beyond
reason (but I bet many of them are the ones who are getting the biggest
tax breaks from the latest compromise from the U.S. Congress).  The rich
get richer, and will therefore be able to poop out even more gold.  What
a waste.  

More information about the Taxacom mailing list