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Re: Bad Science

Dinogeorge@aol.com wrote:

> No, Ken-->getting it right< is what science is all about, and correcting
> mistakes is one route of several to this goal. I would refuse to support any
> endeavor whose purpose is to publish a pack of mistakes and, later, their
> corrections and more mistakes! The latter is >not< what science is all about.

George as a paleontologist I take real offense at this. If we all
waited  till we had it perfect, nothing would get done. There is a
certain point you have to go to press or no one gets to refer to a
taxon. I am very lucky to have lots of significant new dinosaurs to
research. I've often tried to bring in the top people involved in the
various groups to work with me, but most have pretty full plates (a good
sign for our science). I've got several new dinosaurs coming out in the
next few months (and several more I'm just starting to work on). I KNOW
my peers will find errors. Reviewers found errors and I found things I
would now change, but there is a point where you got to put your butt on
the line and publish something. 

Publishing in science is like tossing up clay pigeons in skeet. The
better the science the smaller the target, but there is always something
to shoot at. You better have a thick skin. 

If only perfection was published, nothing would come out. Most of my
errors that I have caught or have been caught by others is because I did
not see the original material and like you I can not afford to go
everywhere, but like Ken Carpenter, I try and see everything I can. 

I have not made it to study the collections from the Wealden yet. But
Ken borrowed material he knew I needed to see and they have been a
revelation. (We do not fully agree on the interpretation, but that is
part of the fun of working together.) 

Do not judge us till you have played the game. Don't try and claim you
can not publish in peer reviewed journals because you do not have page
costs. I don't. Anyone can submit a paper to a journal and there are
lots to pick from. If you have something to say publish it, do not just
sit on the sidelines and critize and moan that not enough people buy
your selfpublished stuff. 

Nuff. said.

Jim Kirkland