[Taxacom] Order Campanulales (worth maintaining?)

Curtis Clark lists at curtisclark.org
Thu Feb 17 23:27:33 CST 2011

On 2011-02-17 13:18, Jim Croft wrote:
> There should always be evidence to back a lump or split decision in a
> classification, even if you choose to be selective about it, even if
> you weight it, even if it is trivial as something like
> consistency/compatability with existing practice.

What kind of evidence could you possibly use? Phylocoders do fine with 
no ranks at all, and even though I believe that ranks are post-hoc 
useful, and thus reject Phylocode, the plant taxonomic literature is 
littered with articles about "generic concepts", "family concepts", and 
such, as if they meant something evolutionarily. After many decades, 
that never went anywhere, and I'd hate to see it resurrected.

I actually agree that consistency/compatibility with existing practice 
is important, but that's not "evidence" of the same sort as shared 
homology, evolutionary innovation, or maximum resemblance. As evolution 
is construed today, grouping can be a science, but ranking above the 
level of species cannot. Hence Phylocode, and thus the best arguments 
against Phylocode are about the usefulness of ranks, not about their 
evidence-based reality.

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