Combat Needs a Buff

Basically what you're all telling me (for the most part) is that "you can accomplish your goals the boring way, or you can accomplish you goals the fun way. It will just take 14x longer."

This trade off between fun and game progression is not good game design, I don't see how you could defend it.
Making money does not equal game progression. It's a valid aim, sure, if that's what you're after. But if you want to play the game in a way that doesn't bring immediate riches, then you're going to have to make a decision: get lots of money doing something you don't enjoy, or do something you enjoy and have less money.
Elite trade rank does not feel like the accomplishment it should be.

Normally I would be perfectly happy ignoring mining and just shooting stuff in my dirt cheap Viper MkIV. But now I'm trying to fort so LL can get that medal on PS4... Quickly burned through all my funds, and I realized just how much combat pilots are getting shafted compared to miners. There's no way I can compete with other Forters who mine.
imo buying extra merits and turning the logistics side into a "who has the most credits and the biggest ship" is one of the most worst decisions to happen to powerplay

having a limited resource available to you and having to make a decision on where to utilise it would make for a far more interesting game on the strategic level and the "every half hour" allowance would actually mean something

fitting anything other than cargo racks to your ship would no longer be a case of "your build is no longer the optimal hauler", maybe we'd even see things like the dropship used for the thing that the text implies they're used for (tanky hauling ships with lots of defences for moving small amounts of important cargo somewhere safely) or cobras and clippers built as fast blockade-runners and the like. If you've only got 50 tons to haul and want to make use of them, you'd build a ship that's great at hauling exactly 50 tons and not losing it.
When I pointed out the Mining and becoming Elite Trader in one day. What I have seen was taking something that needed minor adjustment and Frontier made it 14x easier. Mining use to be really long. I think Exploration was in the middle of being the Norm after 3 or 4 weeks of exploration.
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