<< My point, though, is that these desires/motivations were not created by
the conscious entity with "free will" or something.>>
I agree that we did not consciously create our original base desires/motivations.
<<There was no time in my life at which I DECIDED my sexuality, or DECIDED my food preferences, or my particular loves&hates in any area. I discovered them.>>
Perhaps it was only discovery, or perhaps you did have a role in choosing all these things. I suspect it is some of both (though with the examples you cite I would tend to agree that they are likely more programmed than chosen).
<< All base rules, and therefore motivations are out of our control. The only
"freedom" our "intelligence"gets is to come up with the plans that fulfil this predetermined motivation set.>>
I don't think this is strictly true. Those predetermined motivations are a starting point. With our conscious minds we can evaluate them, weigh them against one another, and recombine them into new desires. It is like a sculptor with marble, who chips away what he determines to be excess to reveal the image desired. Or maybe it is more like an engineer on the shore of a mighty river; she did not create the river, and it will take a lot of intelligence and effort to affect its currents, but she could still divert its course or damn its flow. We may not have chosen the cards we were dealt, but we do have a say in which to keep and which to discard.
<< I could go further and mention that we don't control our intelligence
either - in fact, that the consciousness is not a control device at all, but that's another subject. >>
Please do continue; I would be interested to hear what you believe is consciousness.