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Re: Taxa nomy (and intro)



Just a few comments.

As has been repeatedly said by deans of phylogenetic taxonomy (e.g. de 
Queiroz 1997), it does not require the abandonment of ranks. Although 
categorical 
assignment becomes irrelevant with regard to nomenclature, hierarchy can be 
represented in other ways -- by numbered lists, for example.

I dont know of this was implied or not, but Linnaeanism has no problems 
accommodating the principal that only monophyletic groups should receive names. 
Even most of the critics, like Benton, who rejects polyphyletic taxa and seeks 
to 
avoid paraphyletic ones "whenever possible", and Liden & Oxelman, who 
explicitly equate taxon names with clade names, agree. The real question is, 
should 
monophyletic groups be named with reference to ancestry?

And a last point out the monophyly under phylogenetic taxonomy. The cool 
thing about it is that taxa defined with reference to ancestry *cannot* be 
para/polyphyletic, although it may switch to being more or less inclusive. To 
minimize the latter, you can just use the contentious species/LITUs/whatevers 
as 
specifiers.

-Sean