I wasn't really disagreeing with you Mark. Learning to put your fingers into peculiar shapes to make difficult chords is great exercise.
But I see people trying to use chords they don't need and that aren't ready to use, and losing the fun. And the rhythym.
Much of the time the chords with the strange names and the funny look are just a matter of moving a couple of fingers in a straighforward chord. I never consciously learnt a lot of the chords I play, and don't even think of them as different chords. More theory would help - I tend to think the theory comes out of the practice and after it rather than before.
That's largely a matter of personal style and taste, and it's probably got something to do with what side of the brain you got up on on the day you were born. Sometimes I think we fail to appreciate how very fundamentally people can vary in that kind of thing. It's as basic as the diifference between being left-handed and right-handed.