I'm not sure exactly what you mean by, "Why was I led to believe that this product offered a solution that it clearly does not?"
If your computer doesn't support USB 2.0 then I don't see how you could possibly expect those devices to work at their full potential.
It's going to be awhile before USB 2.0 is standard, much the same way as it took awhile for USB and FireWire to become common -- but that's one of the risks you have to accept when you're an early adopter.
I don't mean to sound rude, but did you research this before you bought? If the salesrep that sold you the equipment told you it would work at 2.0 speeds with current Macs, you should take it back and demand a refund unless you're willing to accept the fact that it's going to be slower than advertised.
Perhaps MWSF will bring some sort of announcement regarding Apple support USB 2.0, but who knows?
[ 12-14-2001: Message edited by: FXWizard ]