I think it is absolutely indicative of a bad trend, and to address one of your points, I can't imagine a circumstance where I'd be wanting to see a 180 million dollar trek movie, because it doesn't need that much money. Maybe if Nolan was making it, because he spends the money wisely, but I don't think he'd be a good fit creatively, though I like damned near everything he does.
Making more smaller shows definitely impacts the VFX community in a better way, because it gives the boutiques a chance to survive. And I've heard that repeatedly, not just in my own interviews with VFXsfolk but in the occasional thread on cgtalk and elsewhere.
One stop shopping for vfx can work (look at Dneg, they can handle a lot of different stuff with taste) but it shouldn't be a default. Going to ILM when it means you're really getting ILM and ILM/Singapore isn't really what ILM used to mean, not entirely. VFX facilities have rarely if ever been going concerns, but if you can't change the system or unionize, then to retain the artists, you need to do something, and if improving -- sorry, altering the frequency of relying on vfx to shore up shitty movies would do that, then you're impvoing stuff on two fronts.
HAVE A FEELING THIS IS GOING TO BE TOLD TO GET ITS OWN THREAD ELSEWHERE ...