[Taxacom] Paraphylophobia (or paraphylyphobia)

Ken Kinman kinman at hotmail.com
Sun Oct 7 21:54:26 CDT 2012

Dear All,            I've been using the term paraphylophobia since at least 1998 in reference to the inordinate fear of (or perhaps more commonly a learned negative response to) paraphyletic taxa.  Whether I coined it, or if someone might have used it somewhere earlier, I think the term helps pinpoint this major cause of instability in biological classifications over the past few decades.     
      I just found a paper by H. Savage (2005) on mosquito systematics which refers to the same phenomenon, but spelled as "paraphylyphobia" (one letter difference).  Whether you want to use his spelling or mine, this problem is clearly not going to go away anytime soon and it needs to be addressed sooner or later.  Some might consider the term too pejorative.  However, perhaps a pejorative term like "derivativophilia" or better yet "derivativomania" might have helped expose Wall Street extremism well before 2008 (and thus reduced how much damage was ultimately caused to the financial system and even more long-term damage to the rest of our economy).  If you just stick your head in the sand, the problem just festers, and any solution just gets kicked down the road.   Anyway, here is a weblink to the Savage paper: 


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