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Cope's Rule and extreme measures



The discussion of Cope's Rule and the endo/ectothermy debate reminds me 
very strongly of the latest editorial in ANALOG, wherein Dr. Schmidt 
talks about the propensity for people to take extreme viewpoints in lieu 
of a more moderate course.  Cope's Rule is not false.  It is not a LAW 
that must be obeyed at all times or thrown out if violated and I don't 
think was ever intended to be taken that way.  As a general rule it 
works pretty well and is a good rule to gamble by, i.e. the odds are in 
your favor.  However, there are plenty of exceptions to this as everyone 
knows.  If someone takes the rule anymore strongly than as a guideline, 
they will be disappointed.  I realize that in other sciences like 
chemistry rules can be considered much stronger, but like has been 
pointed out several times on this list, biology is messy.

Joe
jdaniel@aristotle.net