While I don't agree with tilt's disrespectul approach (It's just what Tilt does, people.), at least the Visuddhi Magga draws a distinction between a Samatha Yanika and a Sukkha Vipassaka: While the Sukkha Vipassaka is a person who only has Vipassana as his/her vehicle and at least reached stream-entry,
the Samatha Yanika is a person who has at least the first jhana as his/her vehicle _besides_ insight/vipassana and, with both insight and jhanas, reached at least stream-entry.
Jhana alone may not be enough, but that does not mean it's useless or a subject that can be neglected, looked down upon or made fun of... As far as understand it, a high level of concentration (such as attained in the jhanas), is a great supporting condition for Insight and thus it's good to develop samadhi.
@ Thread: Concerning jhana in pre-buddhist times. When the Buddha awakened and decided to teach, there were several people he thought might be suitable to understand the Dhamma. Some of them were past teachers of Siddharta Gautama and if I recall correctly, the Buddha thought they would understand because they already achieved one of the higher jhanas. However, most of them died shortly so he couldn't tell them. I think it was something like this.. if you're interested, I'd suggest poking around in that area.