I thought it was worth reviving this old thread.
Mine is a 2003 with 2.3 pzev and I'm getting a cracking/spitting of the paint above the exhaust manifold. I believe that insulation would have avoided this.
It's been garaged since I got it new and the paint is immaculate everywhere else. The small cracks are too small to show up on photos or I would have posted some.
I'm a middle aged guy, with a middle school mind.