Aluminum can break before steel with the same amount of force applied. I recently had a rear derailuer go into my spokes. I fortunately had a very good back wheel, the frame wound up bending before my spokes gave out. We were able to bend the frame back, I have to watch that area of the frame now, but aluminum would have either cracked or caused more stress on the wheel. I can't say the aluminum would have failed, but the mechanic though it would have. I am not trying to dis aluminum frames I think they are great, I think the higher up in weight you go the better steel is for the frame. I'm not sure where the switching point is that makes aluminum better than steel, but there is definately a point somewhere along there.
Getting strong rims, is not A classic mistake. 350 lbs riders hitting potholes with an average strength rim is not a good idea.
Cycocommute you can leave the Condescension at home, you can have your opinion, but that doesn't make mine wrong or worth belittling. Why comment on an opinion that doesn't even state why I chose the way I did? Your post would have been valid without quoting my comments and definitely without "Classic Mistake" and "Let's just stop right there". Your points are good, but I think you are looking at the problem from a different angle than I am. The last line kinda sums up your viewpoint where mine would be more of:
You can build a tank that most heavy riders never have to worry about. I'm not sure what the goal is for the OP, but I was coming from that perspective.