Agreed. But: speed is of the essence. If I can get 90% of the way there in 1 node, or -- god forbid -- 2, the client will appreciate it. I'm thinking of situations where we have a room full of three people who have to catch a plane in three hours, and trust me, this happens every day in LA.
Even when you're doing work for yourself or your own company, it's really, really expedient to get to where you need to go quickly. I can think of many occasions where I've had to take over color-correction jobs from other operators at certain companies, and I was sometimes bewildered at the number of steps they took to go from Point A to Point B. In one case (for a major A-list studio trailer), I literally got to certain shots where the director leaned over and said, "man, I never liked that shot. Can we do something about it?" The previous colorist had done about 8 power windows and four or five secondaries. I threw them all out, started over... and got a beautiful, clean look with two layers. That's it. The difference was massive.
As I said, relighting can be done in post, but at what cost? To me, it diminishes the role of the DP, because this is what their artistry entitles them to do on the set. To me, the role of the colorist is to enhance their work, not try to step in and undo or redo the naturalness of the scene and the core of the image that was there in production.
BTW: I'm quick to add that there are certain ultra-extreme, heavy-duty looks which absolutely will require a dozen or more layers (or nodes), and there's no simple way to get there from a basic look. For situations like this, "natural" isn't what the creative artists want or need, and so we pull out all the stops and go at it. But for a simple shot like what I see above, I don't think that's what you need to do. Less really can be more.