For the record, and don't all come down on me for this, I thought the OP was quite arrogant and also very disrespectful to Finkelstein.
No argument from me on that statement!
I will say, though, that things had already got easier being a JW between when I began "associating" with the JWs in the late 1960s and the time of my baptism in the early 1970s.
For example, the infamous eight-day long assemblies were no more, and the requirements for being a "regular" publisher were much more relaxed. By the time I got baptised, you didn't fall into the "irregular" category if you failed to make 10 hours of service and conduct at least one bible study during the month. Also, if you failed to "place" at least 12 magazines a month, you were no longer made to do keep your rifle held above your head whilst doing ten laps of the parade ground at double-time (so to speak!). For an excellent description of what things were once like as a JW, W.C . Stevenson's The Inside Story of Jehovahs Witnesses ( published in 1968) is an informative read.
As to the present situation, I have been out too long to be able to comment. I do notice, however, that those long-time JWs who have remained with it (some of them for 70+ years) seem to pay lip service to everything the hallowed Governing Body says, while quietly ignoring the more extreme demands of the religion. I suspect, though, that the "It's not for bastards like you" mentality is very much at work there - e.g. Brother big-shot Gilead graduate ex-missionary elder sends his son to university, but ordinary Joe-Publisher better not even think about doing the same (I have seen it happen! )
PS: I didn't intend to sound like some disgruntled old veteran complaining that the "The new guys aren't as good as we was"!