This is one (not so rare) example where the reality of how a computer works oversteps the theory of basic "computer science". What appears to be logically equivalent is not once you put it on real hardware.
What has "real hardware" to do with it? All you need is a compiler that's able to detect tail recursion, and eliminate it, instead of putting the burden on the programmer. Yes, such compilers exist. Ironically, they are more common in environments that are more concerned with the 'theory of basic "computer science"' than in environments that use 'real hardware'.