Well, I suppose hearing it from a Ford designer that helped develop the Zeta engine way back when tips me off as to the nature of the balance.
The stock pulley is NOT A DAMPNER. ITs a BIG chunk of iron that would other wise ADD undesirable harmonics to the motor if is was not
b. bushed with rubber
So the strip of rubber is there as to not harm the engine or add vibrations. Something that is NOT a factor when running a well made pulley that is of essentially inconsequential weight.
If Im SUCH A MORON then I guess everyone at Ford Racing, Esslinger, FocusSport, Mac and Focus Central are as well... I guess im in good company.