Rick, last year the 7000 was selling for $1,099 delivered to your door, and included the remote kit. I suspect it won't be much different this year. The best price for the 857D (base, no accessaries) wasn't but $25 less than nominal street price. Why the disparity, I can't say.
What I will say is, the difference between the 857D and the 7000 is almost night and day. I'll agree the specs aren't all that different, but the 7000 uses an IF based DSP. That alone is worth the difference in price.
The current draw is peak depending on the audio level. The best way to limit that is to use phones. Of course if one was really interested in battery life, he'd be using 703 or the little Yaesu.
And speaking of audio, I wish manufactures would put decent audio amps in their products. Two or so watts just doesn't cut the mustard in my opinion.