Welcome and it is nice to meet you. Many Jehovahs Witnesses feel the same as you do. Of course, there are a few things to consider.
1) How old is too old to consider relevant? In other words, what is the expiration of food at the proper time? 5 years? 10 years? 20 years? 50 years? Do any of those time periods matter to Jehovah? If they are not relevant to you, but to someone else they were, would you feel their feelings are justified?
2) COBE's experience is his. But it is related to many others here who have served or are serving. See that meeting with hundreds of elders, creates the culture that then stretches across multiple congregations and circuits. If someone "goes rougue", they certainly were not put in their place.
3) The "feeling" of the publications is highly subjective. For example, i would suggest that the publications have become much more duplicitous. Giving the impression of personal responsability, while simultaneously making your salvation dependant on association with a particular group of people whos doctrine is subject to change at any time.
4) I respecfully disagree with your idea that freedom is not denied by the self appointed slave class my friend. If I celebrate my sons birthday and do so with a clean conscience, I am disfellowshipped. If I take a forbidden blood product and do not repent despite the fact i have studied it at length and my conscience allows it, I would be shunned. There is no freedom in the congregation. Most born in it (such as myself), don't even know what freedom is.
May I ask in the spirit of kindness and sincerity, what brings you to our site? I am not disfellowshipped. Just a person concerned with how things are going, that allowed myself the time to research outside of what i always held to be true without question. "Men" did not stumble me....reality did. :)