SUMMARY: After several days, I am satisfied to use the latest X Blog update and set the custom link colors to [link] = light blue; [hover] = BLACK.
All I wanted was blog posts where has the HTML DEFAULT behavior. Now we are getting closer to that goal, although I don’t know why we had to work so hard to produce default behavior.
When WP recognizes me in the browser (Chrome), the link color is standard text color which dims on hover. In an incognito window, the links are light blue and they turn to black on hover. Outside the paragraphs in a post, the headers now stay black and the SIDEBAR links are all blue. I can live with that.