Your solution does work and we would have much healthier forests.
We can and should do this on our private land.
The forest service is a terrible neighbor. The foresters and other most USFS professionals know what to do and want to be good managers, but the eco-lawyers file tons of lawsuits and the weak judges are afraid.
[Pine beetle infestation can be stopped right in its tracks with selective cutting of the timber. Pine beetles are hard to spread when the trees arent thick and are spaced out. I had an outbreak on my place and we stopped it by cutting a lot of the pines. The ones that are left have grown exponentially since that cutting and are healthier.]
Not totally true. What happens is that cutting out some of the dead and undergrowth gives more moisture to the healthy trees. The major cause of beetle spread is low tolerance due to low moisture levels which weakens trees. If you recall, a few years ago the Canadians were blaming the Nasty US industrial complex for ACID RAIN. I believe this is the same thing.