Although I started with the cultural notion, I didn't realize how well it all fit together until I got into the middle ages. The Cathedrals in particular were an "aha" moment (as opposed to my "doh" moments
). 3 whips for something that provides 3 contents, perfect match. That's why this was such a good fit. Although the Russians (or any scientific civ) can easily whip libraries also, the happiness problems are harder to deal with. Combining Religious with Agricultural for faster growth, and the pure-irrigation strategy, just came together to make things work out.
I totally agree the whipping restriction is more cumbersome than helpful. Now if they included it with a restriction on swapping after a whip, it might be useful, but as it is it becomes a tedious exercise in math and clicking (and having the right pre-builds). One nice thing about Agricultural, the 50-shield aquaduct makes a nice step to whipping a Knight!
The worst part about the Memphis settlers, was all that time, there was an FP spot near Thebes that would have gotten them iron that was never filled!!!
Edit: Acknowledge your point about Honorable, poor choice of words. I guess I meant a clean declaration, no ongoing deals or units in their territory. Clearly it was not a defensive war!