I agree. Maemo is much more in line with what typical linux desktop systems use (X11, GTK, in the future Qt, glibc, gstreamer, dbus, ...). This makes Maemo a dozen times more attractive for somebody who's actively looking for a Linux product than Android.
However, it's also far from being perfect. There are still a fair number of proprietary components left that need to be either opened up or proper replacements developed by the community.