Great thread paynt! You have made me get off my *** and restructure my links as I knew I should.
Don,t know if this is sound but this is what I have done so far. Start with reciprocal links from hubs or authorities within my theme and go out from there. I prefer to ask for links manually by visiting each site, check it out, and send a personal e-mail if required. This shows the other webmaster that you have at least taken the time to look at their site. This method works almost 100% of the time, including the anchor text that is desired; which for me is always an internal page. I let the auto and links programs link to my home page which is branded, carries the main theme of the site, and has proper meta titles and descriptions. They can use the URL or meta tags as link text which are my favorite keywords. This works great for me.