Dave from the RollerBlogger made some intelligent observations about my Tag Rants on Wednesday that I almost missed...
Russell, I think you are really ranting about JSP in general not just JSP tag libs. Velocity might be a better choice for you (and for me), but I believe that if you are going to be using JSP then you should be using JSP tag libraries as well. With some forethought you can avoid writing lots of general purpose programming logic using tags.
I actually think he might be right. I wish it weren't so - I wish that everyone would stop for a second and think about the direction that JSP is going, but that's not going to happen. Momentum has moved JSP in the direction of tags, and so if I'm going to do JSP programming, I'm going to be messing with tags too. And if I'm going to mess with tags, I might as well accept their short comings and do the best I can with them. Good thoughts Dave!
However, like Dave said, I think that if I can avoid it, I'm going to. Velocity might be the answer... we'll see!