We are largely in agreement with Charles Kluth on the observational data that constrain the late Paleozoic deformation of western and southern North America. Perhaps the major differences in our interpretation reflect different approaches to analysis of regional tectonic systems. Coming from a background that includes extensive analysis of a wide variety of tectonic systems (including many that are active or recently active), we have abstracted a few basic principles that seem to be generally useful in analyzing regional tectonic systems and that helped to guide our interpretation of the late Paleozoic deformation of North America (Ye et al.,...

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