From what I have seen in more than thirty-five years' association in the religion, many if not most elders are absolutely unqualified to hold their offices and are incompetent to boot. They don't know how to counsel. They can't teach. They are poor speakers. They aren't good administrators. Worst of all, they couldn't shepherd anyone, driving their sheep into the jaws of wolves rather than rescuing them. That's not to say I haven't known good men who were fine elders and shepherds, but such men were few and far between.
Abraham Lincoln said it best many years ago. "If you want to see a man's true character, give him power." That is why I drew the comparison between the Flock book and Sauron's One Ring. As you noted, the One Ring controlled all the other Rings of Power and their Keepers. This was especially true of the Nine given to Mortal Men who, blinded by their greed, took them without question only to be enslaved. The elder arrangement does not work, period. It did in the first century for one reason only: holy spirit was the foundation of the arrangement. Holy spirit is not supporting it now, so there is no way these men can function as their first century counterparts did. And even in the first century, there were problems as the book of Revelation clearly shows. But I am convinced that the reason most men "reach out" is because they want to exercise control and power over their fellows. Serving the congregation is the last thing on their minds.
You had a very interesting, and I must say rare and outstanding, experience. I'm surprised that congregation was able to continue as it did without some heavy-handed intervention on the part of the UK branch. Maybe the fact that it was located in an out-of-the-way rural area had something to do with its relative peace and freedom. I don't think that would have been the case had this congregation been in London, Birmingham, Manchester, Liverpool, or some other large city. It might well be that the branch just didn't want to be bothered and so took no action.
You're right to say that some elders are tyrants. The problem is that these bastards aren't deleted, but are allowed to stay in office. Just another proof that holy spirit has nothing to do with their, or anyone else's, appointment in the first place.
In addition to the bottom line, I would add there is one other concern the organization has which is paramount: CONTROL. The WTS is not interested in directing people to God under the loving leadership and teachings of Jesus Christ. It has put itself, through its fiction of being the "faithful and discreet slave" in the place that only Jesus Christ should occupy. It wants that position because, as Christ himself would say, they are "false prophets that come to you in sheep's covering but inside they are ravenous wolves."