The game is very healthy and in the long run I just see it being even bigger. Don't know what the banning issue has to do with the health of the game, though. The people who did those things lied about what happened. They claimed they were banned for going to the planet, but they were actually temp banned for exploiting content.
As for the leveling speed, it's no faster than any other game around. You obviously played a ton in that time or you skipped the cut scenes. It took me nearly 3 days to hit 30 which is right in line, or slower, than the last couple of MMO's I've played.