The spectrum remains a vast wasteland where there is little substantive exchange. From the elderly men who each day trudge to the radio room to talk to the same dying old men on the low bands, to those that shout meaningless numbers at each other for hours on end in Contests or the FAUX world of "Special Events" and "Field Day".
I must disagree strongly with this sentiment. I equate the Amateur Radio spectrum as somewhat analogous to national parks.
Such parks are vast stretches of wilderness that are not
in private hands that would exploit the acreage for maximum profit. The uses of such parks is generally rather narrowly confined to hiking, camping, and perhaps a little (non-subsistence) fishing or hunting. In your view, certainly, experiences such as physical exercise and outdoor living can be found in other ways besides underutilizing such vast lands! Wilderness environments have already been fully mined for biology and nature studies, have they not? There is no more to be gained by humans from leaving that much of the earth fallow!
If viewed in the same way, amateur radio spectrum creates tremendous waste and foregone opportunities in the underutilization of such potentially valuable (read: profitable) spectrum. But instead, hams are merely recreationally getting in touch with the electronics and atmospherics that are governed by laws of physics that cannot otherwise be explored outside of textbooks. Can the development of interhuman communication skills really be accomplished in the same way in the classroom or computer simulator?
If individuals are denied access to the priceless limited resources of nature in a pristine and open environment, there are huge losses to be sustained in human endeavor, the understanding of nature and science, and the carefree exploration of mental exercises in the real world. This is the reason that amateur radio, even when not made use of by large swaths of the population, remains an incredibly important resource to protect, defend, and grow.