I've done my share of work on regrading and installing outdoor french drains in almost every scenario you can think of around the home. No one is saying what the 'best solution' is because no one is at the site, you included.
As for the destruction of shrubbery, it can be moved in many cases, and besides, it should be planted in such a way that when it's full-grown (or grown to the size you want/like), it should be no closer than 3' from the foundation. Air and sun are important in keeping the perimeter of the home dry. As for driveways, walkways, patios, etc., etc., you don't have to destroy them to do a french drain. I've either worked around them or not at all.
As for determining the source of the problem, the overwhelming vast majority of them are due to landscape/drainage issues or gutter/downspout issues. Only once did I make an attempt to 'fix' a water problem that couldn't be fixed w/o a sump pump. That's because the home was in the flood plain of a small, underground stream. The home was over 60 years old, way before there were codes about building in flood plains. (There was a surface stream that was man-made to help 'draw' the underground water away many years AFTER the home was built.)
I don't know what 'dramatic shifts in weather conditions' there are that affect an exterior, sub-terranean drainage system that's built below frost line, or simply properly built. When they're properly built, weather and land 'movements' as you would say, are taken into consideration. Sorry, but I feel you're just putting unnecessary fear into the homeowner.
Interior systems have their place. My unsolicited $.02 says to use them judiciously. When less-interior-intrusive measures such as exterior modifications fail or don't work or can't-be-done, then look into making a mess of the interior, living space(s).
Yes, even the best of interior Dry Basement Professionals can't guarantee a dry basement. And yes, it would be prudent to educate yourself about the 'subject'. But Jack, need you make a sales pitch for your book to get your point across?! I offer my advice for free. How 'bout you???