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Re: "Dinosaurs don't count"



In a message dated 4/22/99 6:41:04 AM EST, mstyzen@nos40eq.shell.com writes:

<< Hey George, lighten up on us industrial types, we have our own problems. 
 When I started here there were 22 paleontologists here and 25 in
 Houston.  Now there are only 4 of us, all in New Orleans.  Even though
 our work saves the company millions we are constantly having to justify
 our existance and to shake the image of being "stamp collectors". This
 is hardly what I would call considerable support.>>

Sad to see that even commercial paleontology is being marginalized.

<< That said, I also have to say that as a scientist I don't think
 importance is determined by economics.  Paleo interests me because I'm
 interested in getting the big picture of the past.  As the dominant
 Mesozoic land animals dinosaurs are very important.  THeir relationship
 with birds, whatever that might turn out to be, makes them an important
 link to understanding what's going on today.  I love fossils, the
 science is in putting together the story, they are all important. >>

You and a small minority of others, myself included, are "interested in 
getting the big picture of the past." This is "important" to >us.< But most 
people couldn't care less, because what's past is past, dinosaurs are 
extinct, etc., etc. Other pursuits, of the kind I enumerated, are much more 
"important" to this majority.