No solution for lots of tabs yet
Old Opera had two very good things for managing lots of tabs: Tabs had a minimum width and there was also a Windows panel for them. At the moment I have LOTS of tabs opened and I want to close several, but it is a difficult job. And BTW, as tabs become too narrow it is almost impossible to NOT HIT the current tab's Close button when clicking it.
I don't disagree with your main treatise, but just to comment on a smaller detail which might help you in the meantime… "as tabs become too narrow it is almost impossible to NOT HIT the current tab's Close button when clicking it." –> alternatively you could hide the close-crosses, then in future close tabs via middle-click, or mouse-gesture. Without visible crosses, you'll no longer accidentally close tabs when left-clicking: Settings - Tabs - Tab Display - Tab Options - Display Close Button [untick this box].
I would not say that there is no solution, perhaps just not one that you find convenient.
- Tab Stacking
- Separate Windows