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tail recursion

   I don't think that anyone is under the illusion that the requirement
   for proper tail recursion is anything other than a space saving
No.  It is not just a space saving optimization, which is why it is
so important.  I routinely write programs that run in CONSTANT SPACE
in a tail-recursive implementation, and which would rapidly die
in a non-tail recursive implementation.  Tail recursive is a necessary
feature of Scheme, because my Scheme programs won't run in an
implementation without tail-recursion.

Would Scheme without garbage collection be Scheme?  Would Scheme
without tail-recursion elimination be Scheme?  These questions
are identical.