I'll relate an experience I had once that I believe exemplifies at least a portion of the root of the problem
Once, an elder whose family I often spoke to, said something strange to me. I don't remember what he said, but I know it was weird, cause I responded, 'You're really weird, you know that!' A sister, whose daughter I was close friends with, slapped my arm (gently of course) and reprimanded, 'Oh! You can't say that to an elder'.
I didnt' respond at the time. I was a bit taken aback. Upon reflection however, I wish I had said, 'Hey, he's isn't the Pope... or he isn't a catholic priest... or God... or anyone but someone who handles administrative duties of the congregation.'
See, that particular sister was an ex-Catholic. So, I have the feeling that she had simply translated a lot of her ideas from catholicism to witnessism. (hmm, i think i've just coined a new term... witnessism)
Often, there seems to be a trend to treat the congregational arrangement like the clerical hierarchy. I've no explanation or solution for that. I was raised in the truth.
As for the younger generation changing things... that may not happen. But I'm not terribly in touch with Witness youth worldwide, just my own small section of the globe, and only a handful of people at that.
Oh, and the fiction. The Ayn Rand... I don't publicize my choice in literature unless asked. I browse the Society's literature as well, but I don't limit it there. Thinking of that, there's this new translation of the Bible out, and the language is just amazing, so clear, so modern, and you can read so many of the verses and go, 'oh wow. I get, like, on my level, what this guy's saying now.' I'll look it up and find the name.