"The most important part is that this scheme counters ONLY Haar-face based detection algorithms. That's just like only defending against bombs-in-shoes but not bombs generally, and it has the same drawbacks."
You are arguing that it "counters only Haar...", when it has "only been tested against Haar...".
The two are not the same thus you cannot say it does not work against other "face detecting" systems untill either it has been tested against them or you can show good grounds for your reasoning. Nor can you argue that it does not work against "face recognition" systems for the same reasons.
Further there are two distinct uses for FR systems,
1, Is this face a match for the credential presented.
2, Does this face match any in the "rouges gallary" DB.
In the first you should actually be looking to "disprove" the match (ie pick up on differences)
In the second you should initialy be looking for similarities (data base reducing searches are "and" not "or").
In the general case "Face detecting" is only going to be used for the latter system.
It would appear that untill 9/11 FDsystems where not investigated that much, and most of the improvments in FR (not FD) where by automaticaly adjusting for "off full face" 2D presentation and other "real time" issues.
And few people have publicaly looked into the various forms of "deception" that might work against either FR or FD systems.
But we do know some FR systems designers have given up on 2D presentation and are now using 3D presentation.
However 3D presentation has distinct limitations in that it works only when the test subject is within a relativly short distance of the stereo camera. And this causes a much increased system cost.
Normaly as a system designer you would not opt to make a "fundementaly limiting" design choice unless there where good reasons to do so. Likewise you would normaly chose the least costly system that works.
So some of the designers of FR systems are certainly aware of 2D presentation short commings and thus may well be aware of the issues of "deception" as they have opted to go for a fundementaly different and considerably more expensive way of building FR systems.
As for your comment,
"... and they do; IR is unreliable for biometrics..."
I for one would be interested to know what you base that on. There are a number of biometric systems that do use "near visable" IR just more effectivly for scanning objects (including faces) for two reasons,
1, Because the human eye is insensitive to it and it does not cause the iris to change.
2, The sensors and optics actualy work better at those wavelengths.