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Re: New papers in Geobios (and nomenclatoral gripe)

T. Michael Keesey wrote:

A dubious name is still a valid name.

I know. I think we're talking at cross-purposes here.

If it was forgotten (oblitum) or undescribed (nudum) or preoccupied, it'd be invalid, but dubious names are still "available" under ICZN rules.

I was refering to the *taxonomic* validity of a genus, not to any nomenclature problem. A genus name may be nomenclaturally valid, but the genus the name denotes can be taxonomically invalid. This is currently the case with _Mochlodon_ (though this could change). Every nomen dubium is still a potentially valid name (unless it's preoccupied, of course).

_Antrodemus_ and _Trachodon_ are likewise nomina dubia; this is a taxonomic decision, and is subjective. But the names _Antrodemus_ and _Trachodon_ are perfectly valid; this is a matter of nomenclature, and is objective.

You can't just sweep such
names under the carpet -- they are "incertae sedis" but not invalid.

Oh, I see what you mean; no, this isn't what I meant at all. If _Mochlodon suessi_ is a nomen dubium, then it is taxonomically *invalid*. As I said, as long as it is a nomen dubium then no more material can be referred to _M. suessi_, and _M. suessi_ cannot be referred to any other species or genus (e.g., as a junior synonym) or vice versa. That's the unhappy fate of a nomen dubium. But, yes the NAME _Mochlodon_ is still valid. It's the TAXON that is invalid, so long as it's regarded as a nomen dubium.

Now, a separate argument would be whether ICZN rules make sense....

The ICZN doesn't rule on nomina dubia. I know you know this :-) ...but I'm just trying to emphasize the point that the validity of _Mochlodon suessi_ as a taxon governs the nomenclature of _Mochlodon_ versus _Zalmoxes_.