First of all, an interesting and insightful article, thank you!
Like the author, I have around 25 years commercial IT experience: software development, training and support. I also look back fondly to the days when genuine skill was appreciated and paid at (admittedly) a very generous rate. My pay rate hasn't changed in years, and this isn't something I'd complain about, given that it started off way above the average for the hours and effort expended, but some things certainly have changed.
In the late 1990s I was a technical trainer, loving the experience of having a room full of geeks eager to learn the ins and outs of (e.g.) NetWare, TCP/IP, etc. but in the space of a few months, a quite astonishing and noticeable change meant it became much more common to have an audience concerned only with passing a specific exam, with no interest in what had been learned from experience, and much less in sharing any (often limited) experience of their own.
Whereas at one time it was a novelty for enthusiastic but amateur programmers (yes, Office developers usually) to be able to pick up tips, it is now with monotonous regularity that I am asked to help out with projects undertaken by people who have little or no genuine interest in programming, but don't think it's worth their while employing experts to write applications when they can cobble something together from scripts downloaded from the web.
I'm not talking about home users who want make an address book in Access or use mail merge to send out party invitations, but 'professionals', for whom building an application is one of their many varied IT roles.
Amongst the questions I've (genuinely) been asked in the past fortnight alone by 'IT professionals': "How long would it take me to write an app?" and "Would it be easier to write this without using variables?".
So, of the million or so 'IT professionals', which presumably includes support staff, network engineers, designers, developers et al, how many are doing what they're actually good at, and (more to the point) how many are appreciated for it?