What it did do was cut out the middle class players. It's a binary expansion, like Osmeric pointed out, of completely solo play or hardcore play. That's the problem, not some imagined focus on hardcore whining. Hardcores didn't get catered to, they simply got left alone while middle-class players were shut down in favor of solo play via LFR.
Ironically, this sucks for hardcore guilds as they no longer have middle-class players filtering up into their guilds for recruitment. This has led to a gradual population decline that isn't very good for long-term heroic raiding. Yay for Flex Raiding.