I have been copy/pasting objects because when I Duplicate objects, I can no longer "apply all transforms" (control a) to them. I use that feature to reset the rotations to 0 and scaling factors to 1.0, otherwise when I adjust locations and dimensions, sometimes my objects jump around. Whether they do or not, when I look at rotation, dimension, and location values, I want to see what they all are in the world coordinate system, because that is how I think about object locations with respect to each other. If I rotate something it's because I am changing how I am using the object and it is permanent; the object remembering a previous orientation is just confusing, since the dimensions are no longer using the world axes.
Apparently, I do not understand something fundamental about Blender's mindset toward objects and their coordinate systems, locations, dimensions, etc. With the information above, can anyone tell what I need to learn?