Yay! I'm famous!
Kuytrider, there are exceptions to every rule, and it's awesome that you found a way to get your work in even with your spine issues. Like I wrote, it's not about being hardcore or hating on new things. I've made lots of use of machines to try and work around my rotator cuff problems. The real issue with the smith machine is that people are using it to avoid doing things that are "hard", like real squats and OHP's. In doing so, they are forming bad habits, missing out on lots of gains, and possibly injuring themselves in the process. Not good stuff.
Raw gym PR's, soon to be broken-