Your list essentially looks like you want to ascertain that you'll be able to use a CMS here at Dreamhost. Given that we're both DH customers, talking about my experiences using Joomla on the DH forums, I figured it was reasonably evident that you can use a CMS. I can see where there may be some confusion though, so let me clarify that every hosting level here can do this.
Please understand that I'm trying to be completely honest here, and hope to not come across as patronizing. With Dreamhost you can either implement Joomla as your CMS with an automated install process, or you can rely on your expertise to install an alternative CMS manually. There are at least a handful of people on this forum that use Joomla, and seem willing to offer advice.
After multiple attempts to bring up various CMS installations, you found that you always ended up getting stuck because you simply didn't know where to start. There is no reason to be upset that you don't just know this stuff the first time through, but I've provided pretty much the most helpful and beginner oriented resources I can think of.
Until you get the first earnest attempt under your belt, using a lot of Google and wiki searches, there seems to be only one answer here. If you're going to go for it, you should use Joomla and the one-click install offered by Dreamhost. There is no less complicated method of getting started available here.
Joomla Forum: http://forum.joomla.org/index.php
Joomla FAQs: http://forum.joomla.org/index.php/board,49.0.html