I'm with TMS. I've got a whole slew of theories about what's working and what isn't but the incentive to contribute any further has gone right down the toilet with all the bashing and anthropomorphic conspiracy hatching (not to mention personal attacks) that go on here now. I understand that everyone's site is 100% perfect in their eyes, and that people are hurting, but there are also people who have gained bigtime, and guess what, they're not *all* Amazon, Walmart, and scraping miscreants.
NONE of us are so expert we don't have lots to learn, from what Google is saying and doing, and from each others' experiences, but it's getting pretty damned difficult to find the signal amongst the noise.
Things change. You can cling to whatever you've been doing the past eight or ten years and quite possibly go down with the ship, or you can shut up about how much Google sucks and how they're penalizing sites as a power play or for pure pleasure, and figure out how to make yourself more Google-proof. And maybe that means not only your site changes but your business model changes. So what? It's the world we live in. It's going on three months now. It's not going to magically get better.