You discounted these elements because they seemingly in your eyes are not as 'disney' and probably not much better then a non-Disney version. You said it verbatim!
So why not call the castle in MK an attraction because it has it's mosaics? And rides != attractions. Is main street not an attraction in its own right? If not, why does it even exist. We can just throw all that stuff out and just keep the rides! Oh wait.. then you get Six Flags!Rides = attractions. The castle in Disneyland USED to be an attraction walk-through as well. It's a shame that it no longer serves as an attraction and an icon.
Most of them died because they SUCKED. It had nothing to do with being bored of them. Just because a ride opens, doesn't mean it will be successful or should be there forever. Most of those attractions were not even that old. They just sucked so bad they got yanked.And why are these attractions dead I wonder? Because there aren't enough other attractions for guests to visit... so they go and visit the same old ones over and over and get SICK of them.