Quoted from jar155:
Stop taking away gameplay features. That sucks.
Well that's the problem you will never resolve. Stern sees it the opposite way - They are adding gameplay features to the Premiums. Just like the upper playfields for GOT and Aero.
As someone pointed out earlier, you can never make a $ for $ comparison, as these don't add up to the added price. It's all about packaging and getting people to upgrade. If it didn't make $ they wouldn't do it, and the coding changes could be very small, especially if it was planned for at the beginning.