I'm with Zen Internet. They're cheap, they give me a static IP address, they don't mind me running a Linux server off my connection and....lord be praised....when you call technical support you immediately get to speak to an honest-to-goodness engineer. AN ACTUAL ENGINEER. Somebody who knows the difference between a web address and an IP address and doesn't ask you to turn off your firewall as part of their checklist/script.
They don't supply a router when you sign up, but they seem to know the admin screens of lots of different makes and basically talked me through configuring mine over the phone.
I was a Sky customer for a week once when my previous small ISP got bought out by them. Never again.
Don't be so closed minded. That's the sort of software that is important to you and me. For the vast majority of people, all they need is a word processor, email, instant messaging, web-browsing and Candy Crush Saga. Those sorts of things can absolutely be replaced by something like that.
You download and install VirtualBox. You define a new virtual machine (File -> New) for the operating system you want to run as a virtual machine. You define it's memory, ethernet, HDD size, etc. You attach the operating system ISO file to the virtual optical drive of the new virtual machine you created and then you start it. It installs the operating system as normal and now you have an operating system in a window in your physical operating system.
That's it. Hardly wizardry.
I know! All Americans seem to have, like, massive cable bills. I get Netflix for £5.99 pcm, my broadband for £49 pcm (including line rental and an actual landline telephone) and whatever Amazon Prime goes for a year these days...£80 a year? Can't remember. I don't get Sky or anything but it's not that expensive.
"but there still is one huge problem for regular people and linux, and that's when you incorrectly shut-down most linux distro's you'll actually destroy your OS ~ install ubuntu (non-virtualized) and force shutdown (for proof)"
This, friends and neighbours, is just so much bullshit. You have no idea what you're talking about.