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Regarding Bob Bakker. He is so much of a showman, that in small
symposiums (in the past), other paleontologists have said - 'If he's
coming - I'm not!'. [A specific example: Wagner Free Institute Dinosaur
Symposium 1988 (forgive me if I've forgotten the correct year). 10 speakers
were invited for the weekend - including Dr. David L. Norman (the
_Iguanodon_ worker from England), Jack Horner, etc. Bob Bakker had been
suggested as a guest but at least 4 of the other guests said they would pull
out if he did]. I was glad to see that he was at DinoFest, and was very
accessible to everyone.
He is a good dinosaur artist. He does have some good ideas about
dinosaurs (and some silly ones as well). He does position himself as an
available Dinosaur expert for TV audiences, as well as a lightning rod for
outlandish theories. At best, his theories stir up the waters enough to
force other workers to push harder to refute them. He is very personable,
and god help us if he ever ran for office. (He's got that look that while
he's talking to you, you can't help but believe him. He'd probably have to
shave quite a bit to run for office :-).
My 2.5 cents (inflation strikes again).