The nonsense starts by always putting it as such simple equations like:
Aqua critics= Mac OS X haters
Mac OS X pleased person= Apple zealot
<img src="graemlins/bugeye.gif" border="0" alt="[Skeptical]" />
This is the way to simplify reality for tit for tat discussions. This is nonsense. I have had those discussions myself every time I found something not mature, defective or missing in X. I still have a lot to say about Aqua, but for me the valuable underpinnings of X outweigh its shortcomings of the GUI on my iBook, while I ditched X currently on my desktop.
Different people find different things lamentable or exciting, sometimes the personal view puts thing more in a false light, sometimes it puts things to shine. Meanwhile Mac OS X offers many things that work speedy and properly and other things that are hardly more than a sketch of things to come.
Depending on the amount of things you work with of both sides your view may be completely different and your personal summary may either be "sufficiently speedy" or "unbearable slow".
However, there are still things that prove both categories to coexist in this OS. To neglect the existence of one means you have a biased view. It is therefore better to describe the exact function that is speedy, or the one that is slow.
It is an old one, but e.g the statement that 2d functions in X are 300% slower than under 9, giving the user stutterly scrolling performance, which greatly hinders a quick workflow, is something that can be measured. Maybe someone could be even "pleased" with this reduced performance, but someone having so small standards may not be interested in this discussion.
You can always argue about the speed of a given copy process, the speed for opening apps, the speed for switching programs and such, but you cannot argue general statements like "I am pleased".
And for all that "hate" the Aqua looks there are themes around and customizing apps for tweaking the OS to better match your needs or taste.
. I think much of the taste debate tries to make use of technical arguments to come up with some measurable means. Since Aqua is also looks and function it is sometimes hard to get this straight. I know.
I think we all use Macs for the difference it makes in terms of style, appearance, looks, fashion and design, not only on the hardware side, but also on the software side. It is for this reason this type of discussion takes place, which is unparalleled in the PC world.
And it is especially hard when our co-Mac mates seem to take a stance against us, while all we want is the best Mac experience ever. And some things in X are not quite up to this standard by now. :o
Sorry for venting so long.