Very good read. I'm sharing your philosophy and like I said yesterday, I'm a console fetishist. You just need to use what you have when you are in a recovery console or when your server just does not have access to that NFS export or SMB share where all your fancy tools and scripts are.
I think it's way more important to understand how things actually work. This will also help a lot when it comes to tracking down errors.
PS: This is not about necro'ing an old thread, but the topic just came up once more.