A very well thought out piece M4tt - and much of which I agree with.I think that the Odet review is indeed accurate for that movement at that time. However, it would be rather dangerous to generalise from what was, while representative of the Cal.3000, clearly, an aberration in the broader history of Rolex movements .
Look at the movements that came before, movements like the 3035 and 1570, These really do stand toe to toe with anything from anyone that you can buy without a mortgage. Likewise, the later 3135 is a far better movement made to a far higher standard. In short, the 3000 which Odets looks to be the odd one out . A damaging and embarrassing black sheep to be sure but still not representative of the majority of Rolex's other movements.
It is disingenuous to assert that Odets was biased or that he got a 'Friday afternoon' watch. His review clearly implicates the production at that period. Why Rolex's standards slipped is another question. That they were far, far higher, both before and after is quite clear. Perhaps Odets did Rolex fans a favour by reminding Rolex of their brand standards. He has not been thanked for it.
I think the Odets article is a work of analytic brilliance. However, it has been a 'political' football: depending on your favourite cool aid flavour it either proves that all Rolex are rubbish which is supported by nothing more than advertising, or it means nothing as it was just a hater delighting in having found a very rare lemon (or worse). I can't help feeling that both camps are equally foolish.
I guess it is understandable thought; the fact is that all high end watches are unjustifiable Veblen goods and the tension between actual and perceived value cause a fair degree of cognitive dissonance. Is it any wonder that 'the faithful' grasp at any straws to rationalise their choices? There's no problem with rationalisation as long as your arguments are sound and your premises are valid. Indefensible 'opinions' are another matter.