As for the leaks, I wouldn't worry too much about them. Mercs are notorious weepers. My 560SEL drips a bit of oil from the rear main seal, but I'm not about to spend $700 to pull the motor.
Like tkamiya wrote, keep your eye on fluid levels. I check the oil every time I fill up the tank...
There's a Merc tech on this forum who has a saying about the leaks, forgot his handle (?)
I wouldn't doubt your bushings are worn, pretty common at that age and yes, mine does the exact same thing.