These are all excellent points. I was hoping the author would have thrown things like this out for debate.
As for client heavy web sites, can you say boo.com?
A big part of our day is living within the reality that exists today. Stateless HTTP sucks in many ways. CGI sucks in many ways. Java applets suck in many ways. I can almost guarantee you that if they added state to HTTP tomorrow, we'd all be complaining about some aspect of it. Most -- heck, I'd say all -- of the technology I use has at least one dimension of suckiness. My problem with the article is that it mixes all the suckiness up into on cauldron then assigns a label that, at least in a veiled way, points to one of the ingredients. You get some pointy hairs reading that stuff and next thing you know they mandate "no Perl" or something similarly stupid.
At one job we outsourced GUI development and got a really bad result, even though from a checklist perspective everything was "okay." The problem was with the coding. Management banned the tool that was used from ever being used again. As if the tool, which actually seemed quite good, was responsible for the poor use of itself. That's the reality of our world. Who here can claim that if the author of N books spoke to your boss he wouldn't listen at least a little? I think it's our responsibility to keep writers, experts, and ourselves honest.