Not sure where you get the information above, but no, you're not right. There are literally thousands of sites added daily. It has been discussed many times why some areas take forever to get listed in and other areas do not. It has also been discussed exhaustively on why some sites will NEVER be approved/listed.
There is nothing fishy about it. The largest problems in my opinion stem from those that submit their sites to multiple categories (sometimes 10's/100's) instead of to the "single" best category – not to be perceived as what's best for you or your site, but where the submission actually belongs. The directory could get along fine and grow at approximately the same pace if no-one ever submitted a site to begin with.
Look at it this way – if an editor spends 1-2 hours documenting and tracking down a single abusive submitter which had 25 mirror domains listed, think of how many sites that one editor could have listed every time they do that….