I think I'm getting the point of Christian (after a few more e-mails): he's using automake, he likes it, and that's the way it is. Even if each of my makefile subparts are about as big as a Makefile.am. I'm pretty sure that if I could hack a version of automake that would produce non-recursive makefiles, he'd use it.
Anyone who's a firm believer of recursive makefiles should hack on Mozilla a bit. On my Pentium 225, an empty make (one where there is nothing to build, like if you do make twice) takes upward of 15-20 minutes! And it's nothing close to "exact dependencies".
Maybe I should do just that, hack automake to produce a single non-recursive makefile?
But I also have to hack so many other things...
I went to see Meet the Parents yesterday with my girlfriend. It's okay, but then, I loved 10 Things I Hate About You, so I guess I'm some kind of twisted, crazy moviegoer. The Whole Nine Yards is also very good, plus you get to see Montréal!