I think to some extent spending the money on good knives and pots is worthwhile, but you need far less of each than they try to sell you.
Knives: a paring knife (cheap), bread knife (cheap), chef's knife/chinese cleaver/santoku (either of those, they all serve a similar function - more pricey), boning knife (also on the more pricey side)
Pots: a good sized stock pot, and a couple sauce pans, preferably in some nice conductive easy to clean stuff like the all-clad or it's imitations (kinda expensive), an a good sized cast iron frying pan (cheap).
Knives and pots should last you 'forever' if cared for well, with the exception of the paring knife and bread knife, which you shouldn't think of spending more than about $30 for - the cheap stamped ones are as useful as the forged ones in this case. And those sets of either that have like 8 items are excessive sillyness. If you have a 8" chef's knife, why the hell would you need a 6" knife that's the same shape, only a bit smaller?
Most of the rest listed in that article is insanely excessive to me. Last I checked, $200 jeans were a lot like $30 jeans, except they'd been worn out before you buy them.
recursive ... who's still too cheap to replace his 13" tv