How can I correct the need to manually reindex and flush the cache everytime I add or update a product?
See screen shot https://drive.google.com/open?id=0Bytqhoir_Tt5eldLeEFaTE5UemM
You can just leave the cache invalidated while you are working in the backend, and when you will have finished your backend work you can refresh the cache.
Isn't that indicative of a problem with the software?
Are there no work-arounds or corrective actions available?