Well I have a long track-record of hating carb swaps into late-model EFI vehicles. Regardless of what power it puts out, to me that is just ruining the car, so my advice if you are looking for more power with your bird would be to go with the explorer motor. It will be a simpler swap, it will be a cleaner swap, it will be a cheaper swap, the car will have much better drivability, and while it may not matter where you are now, there is definitely something to be said for being able to pass an emissions check in any state, should you ever decide to move or sell the car or something.
As for the Jeep swap, if you are trying to keep a teenager interested and out of trouble, keep in mind that a teenager has a very short attention span, and if the swap gets too complicated with no end in sight, he will just say screw it and go back to whatever he was doing before. That to me, would be one of the perfect candidates for a carbed 5.0 swap since it won't be a wiring nightmare, the motor will be easy to work on, and he can have the truck together and running on the trails and having fun with it within a couple months, and at that point the tinkering and maintaining and upgrading it is what will keep him interested long-term.
So in summary, don't destroy a 4.6 tbird by ripping all the wiring out and dropping in a carb'ed motor, and don't waste your time trying to make a troubled teenager want to wire up an EFI motor into a Jeep as his first introduction to working on cars.
no emissions tests here so that's never been an issue. That and I rarely sell a car and the two times I've done it its been because another car enthusiast liked the set up and made an offer I couldn't refuse. Otherwise, I donate since most aren't worth enough to bother with the hassle of selling.
as for my buddies son that needs some focus, we understand that. his father is a car guy, though mostly interior and paint. He and I are instructing him on the motor rebuild, upholstery work (his dad), and window tint...which that will be the most difficult cause neither of us are very good at it. as for the wiring, I have a wiring harness out of a 95 donor parts car which I'm doing all the wiring. we're going to let him drive it at the 1/8th mile track for a few passes then he will sell it to make money for community college supplies.
as for me cutting up my own wiring for a carb motor, that's one of my biggest nays against doing this. so I agree with you on that one.
Thanks for the concern regarding the teen involved in the other build. Proof there are still some people who have a heart even if they disagree with you. Trust me when I tell you this, We Both understand he is in a very sensitive situation. We have done our due diligence and came up with a plan to keep the frustration as low as possible.