Everyone should, by now, have come to the conclusion, that Wube is way better at making a really great game even better, than at communicating what exactkly changes (or not).
And i am pretty sure, that it is better this way around than the other.
Some of the team also seem to like trolling their audience a bit, as topics like Bots versus belts (yes, this thread even got locked!) or #224 - Bots versus belts clearly show.
But this FFF was definitely one of the more informative and less trolling ones.
So, if you are easy to trigger, better avoid the FFF altogether and be positively surprised by the final product.
It will be great.
Mods will not die. Some really seem to believe, that the dude, that made Wube give him source code access and add quite a chunk of his code in the game although they do not plan on using it in vanilla will consider stopping to mod. That will not happen. He will not quit modding just bedcause they are not always doing exactly, what he wants. Most likely, there will be updates to make all the great mods work with 0.17. I myself am ready to fork stuff, that allows forking and improves my gameplay. And everyone can do that - updating a mod for API changes most often is way easier than making a new one.
Even the axing of axes can be compensated by using items hold in hand / inventory or armor grid equipment.