Thanks, Roger. I appreciate your response and have a few followup comments
1. Scaling on chain was always the plan from day one. I don't understand the second part of your question regarding putting the blockchain on hold.
Related to 1. Why does the scaling and a hard fork have to result in creating a blockchain, balances, and (as a result) coin values that are inherently separate from Bitcoin core? IT dev project will typically make the application unavailable for a few hours or days while new code is uploaded to make new features possible - why is this approach not
being considered to scale bitcoin block size?
2. There are already 1,000 lanes of traffic. Bitcoin is just one of them. Now that the Bitcoin lane is crowded, people are starting to use other lanes. (Alt coins)
Related to 2. I don't think that analogy works. Alt coins aren't additional lanes on the highway, they don't have the same use or purpose as Bitcoin does...alt coins are like the back roads, the country roads, the fire service roads...certainly worth of travel and may have some scenic vistas but don't really facilitate transaction traffic. I don't know of any companies or online wallets that also accept altcoins in addition to Bitcoin (let alone any that accept altcoins only). People will only drive transaction traffic to other sources if/when the believe that the Bitcoin transaction highway is unsafe for travel.
And more broadly, why is the proposal for Bitcoin Unlimited built upon the idea of having a completely separate coin under the same name?