I thought about this secondary issue the first time through but was a little stunned to comment on it. I always get emotional when saying goodbye especially when it just may be for the last time. Don’t know why, but that’s me. I stand out in the street when out of town friends/family leave after a weekend visit - waving like a mad man 'till they turn the corner. At the airport, I wait however long it takes to see the plane disappear from view. Something bad must’ve happened in a former life because I just hate goodbyes.
You said that all your life you were told to
1. Love the Friends and,
2. Learn Organizational Procedures like the back of your hand.
None will argue that #1 is a goal worth trying to reach. It’s what Jesus did. Cared about people – made their needs the focus of his life... or so it’s said. He also railed against those who focused on doing #2 (pun intended). The Pharisees were sticklers for procedure and pity the poor widow or orphan that stood in their way to stardom.
JW elders, especially those aspiring to be among the elite, are exactly the same. The ones you called out by name in this thread are probably versed in Organizational Procedure. And... they have serious juice. AMNESIAN spoke on this issue a while ago. People of that type will never give up that lifestyle for the sake of principle or love of others. Why should they? Caring too much for others carries a price they are not willing to pay.
This is something it took me nearly thirty years to figure out. As I was exiting a lifetime of association with “Jehovah’s People” – among other things – there’s one thing I finally figured out: the better you were at being a JW, the less humane and the less human you likely were.
I thought about it. I found that the really “good” JWs I ever knew were pretty cold individuals. They weren’t the type who leaned on their (untrustworthy) human feelings. Whatever emotional instincts happened to surface when dealing with ‘orphans and widows’ were always ignored, if not considered demonic in origin.
Example: the elder that married my wife and I, an otherwise fine man, told us that the primary reason he didn’t go to his grandmother’s funeral because it was in a church. The woman had a big hand in raising him to manhood – a pillar in his life! – but he wouldn’t go pay his respects, the very last time he ever could. Why? Organizational Procedure. It stunned me when he told us that. With my new mindset, I couldn't believe he'd do such a thing.
The point is: you can’t do both 1 AND 2. Not for long, anyway. Sooner or later, one of the goals has to make room for the other since they will never coexist. EITHER love the friends or learn (and meticulously follow) organizational procedure. Can’t do both.
But then James, you already know that.