"OK, I know that these are just a Folder full of short-cuts, but why?"
Because lots of people find it very helpful. The idea of libraries was consumer driven - the result of feedback from the Windows user-base. Lots of people store the same file types at different drive locations or on different drives, and that's when the library system can be very helpful.
As john bunyan has pointed out,it's a pretty simple procedure to turn libraries off with a small registry tweak if you don't like the idea.
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