Well look at how it works in RL not soccer where there are no player shortages and standards between divisions are not as stark.
2003 Halifax could only afford £400k for wages so that's roughly what they spent. They beat London and didn't win another game after that, and crowds went down and down.
2005 Leigh could not afford full cap and spent what they could, they won two games and went down penniless.
Both clubs survived - nobody died.
Those who support P & R say what's wrong with that. Clubs earn the right to play in SL and if they don't do anything so what, they go down, and another club has a go.
The problem is that the second division RL clubs don't have a professional team like Blackpol FC had when they were promoted nor access to quality professionals they can sign on for a season to add to that strong base.
So anyone promoted have to largely change their team and build a whole new side in a matter of weeks when there aren't the quality players to build it with.
It all becomes a pointless excersise in a way. the other thing to look at is who goes down??
This year Sheffield would have gone up and would have needed a lot of money to build a competetive side and who is there to buy who'd want a one year contract? Widnes would have gone down just as they are trying to build an SL side undoing all the work O'Connor has done. If London or catalans come bottom the RFL won't want to relegate them for sure.
It's not soccer BRK and so to make the transition succesfully you do need a lot of money. Having said that both Crusaders and Wakefield built scratch sides and went well to the shame of established SL clubs who didn't.
What is the difference from having to build a SL team after promotion to building one after being awarded a SL licence. Widnes were awarded a licence and finished bottom. Catalans were awarded a licence and finished bottom.
Hull KR were promoted and stayed up, also Huddesrfield, Wakefield and Castleford. What is the difference.?
Huddersfield and Castleford ( twice) went down but came back and survived.
If Widnes had have gone down this year, then it would be their own fault for recruiting a sub standard team and a poor coaching staff after coasting through their last season in CC and making no effort to recruit properly. They would have survived if O,Connor was the true fan/owner he seems to be and had stuck with them to rebuild for another crack at promotion.
If London had gone down this might not have been a bad thing. The juniors that you rightly laud as having been London born and bred in their team are clearly, talented though they might be, finding it too much of a jump from london amateur RL to SL. A season in CC would be a better fit for them to acclimatise to pro rugby before a leap to SL if the broncos got promotion. They would lose the Sky funding but the reduction in wages expenses and the possible increase in attendances from having, finally, a successful team might well have compensated for that. This would also be a true test of Hughes and his loyalty to the club. If he bailed it would only be a taste of what is to come in any case.
If we ever went back to p and r the status of the French club(s) would have to be thrashed out. If they are relegated, where to, CC or LER for example but it is not an unresolvable problem. The precedent for a French team to operate in CC has already been set with Toulouse's participation at that level for instance.
Finally, that you need money to be in SL is undeniable but, from the state of several existing members of SL, it would appear that the amount of money needed is going to have to be reduced for them to survive. This would make it easier for any promoted club to compete.