"pare down to its essence" was a bad way of saying "disregard intersecting issues and focus on one logically resolvable issue." Your soundproofed room analogy is apt.
I also agree with applying pure logic to a scoped problem being not only possible but desirable... but I'd argue that properly scoped problems are rarely as useful to solve as the scoper might think. In many cases "merely" scoping the problem in a novel way leads directly to a truly useful course of action, and is most of the hard work.
I agree completely with emotions being something we should not deny, but rather be something to /include/ when trying to solve problems. (My complaints are around emotions being placed outside or opposed to the realm of logic, where accounting for them is "illogical")
(Not attacking, genuinely curious because I'd love to find new and more useful courses of action when it comes to problems...)
I further argue that useful scoping (isolating the problem in a way that solving it provides a solution amenable to all those who proposed the problem) often /is/ the hard work, itself a product of much time and logic.
Far from proposing a useful course of action: I simply lament that we will often choose our scope to support simple logic, rather than use complex logic to improve the scope.
No surprise either: each life only has so many hours.
It is possible to genuinely enjoy scoping the problems out though, evaluating their complexities, etc. It's also possible to say "I don't have time to evaluate the thing, so I'm not going to conclude anything about it" (although the latter irritates lots of friends, haha)