First of all Thank You for the detailed reply. For the benefit of others here is what I observed.
2. Cannot set ENABLED to false because then content (bullets especially) is not rendered correctly. The bullets are gone and other things. also no borders etc.
3.Compatibility mode was off and made no difference
4. at the end of the day I had to do brute force as follows whenever I hide/show content on page
editor = $find(id); editor.get_contentArea().setAttribute(