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  • One of the qualities that a nomenclatural system should have: the rules that command the allocation of nomina to taxa must work in the most automatic possible way, without leaving place to arbitrary or bureaucratic decisions. The freedom of choice of taxonomists as concerns nomenclature must be restricted to the indispensable minimum, i.e. concretely to only two situations: at the creation of a nomen, and for every nomenclatural act, i.e. every first-reviser action whenever such an action is necessary. In all other cases, the decision should be automatic and should, in all rigor, arouse no emotion from the part of users. A good nomenclatural system should not only avoid arbitrary decisions, but also limit to the minimum the recourse to bureaucratic action through committees, commissions, courts or other boards, charged to take decisions whenever the rules leave some doubt in their application. The automaticity of the rules should ideally be such that two taxonomists living on opposite sides of the planet should be able, without communicating with each other, to reach the same nomenclatural conclusion whenever they adopt the same taxonomy. Any system requiring a frequent recourse to a bureaucratic authority would be too heavy and soon bound to become inefficient. Furthermore, the strong risk exists that it could place the taxonomists of different countries or having different opinions in an unbalanced situation. (Dubois 2005c)

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  • 1416

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