I hear you on frameworks, abandoned that long ago. Since then I’ve gone the pure JS route and the boilerplate route, without much greater success.
The problem with roll-your-own or boilerplates is that all those wonderful focussed pieces introduce enormous complexities at the boundaries where they inevitably must interact.
That’s why I’m optimistic about projects like Create React App and Next.JS. Hopefully they can abstract away the parts I won’t need to deal with anyway (finger crossed).
There’s still a lot of work to be done in creating and managing an app, before you get to delivering on the core values that make up your app.
Yes, I fear we are still doomed to being “perpetual newbies”.