With the VC you dont get to use the natural controller either, and I've heard the classic controler for the Wii is less than desireable. As far as the legality, ehh... you got me there, not that it bothers most people. Nintendo already got my fare share of the NES profits.
You would either have to have a ton of money, or be really bad at math not to see the problem with the pricing. With games starting at 5$, say you want to sit down for an afternoon and play some nostalgic games. A lot if NES games dont hold your attention well, and some others suck, and others you thought you remembered liking but now dont. So in 4 hours you go through 8 games.(I know when I sit down with my NES I probably go through twice as many) Thats $50(prices 5-10$), thats %20 of the purchase price of the console in one afternoon.
Yes, if you just got the ones you liked no problem, you'll play them dozens of times and get your moneys worth. Problem is the best games cost the same as the worst games, and there are no trials or refunds. To actualy do much with the VC adds up fast and really makes it not worth it. Id rather spend 5 minutes diging out a console and hooking it up than spend $10 on a game. Im my mind im making $120 by doing the work myself. Then, hey Ive got the console out, might as well play the rest and save that other $40, now I made $600 an hour.
So I guess if you only used to to get some games you really liked, and you wanted to play a lot again, yes it makes sense. But as a way to go back and play through games of old, its not practical at all. Chances are though, if you liked them a lot, they are still in the box with the console in your attic. If you want to see what games you never played were like, or try to find something new to play, its going to cost a small fortune.