The behavior I want works now if you use the mouse wheel while holding the Ctrl key at the same time. This causes it to zoom in or out where the mouse pointer is pointing. This is zoom but as you can zoom out at one place and back in at another, it works better than pan in my opinion, though it is not pan.
The change I want is for an option to do this with the mouse wheel only, without holding +Ctrl. This makes the operation one handed, not two handed. I want to be able to do this one handed with only the mouse.
Besides being far more convenient than it sounds to have one hand free for a drink, for the phone or to scratch an itch, there is the ingrained muscle memory.
I have been using the mouse wheel in CorelDraw for years to do this. It is an aggravation beyond compare to have a set of mouse actions or keyboard shorctuts be altered. I want to change the program to my way of doing things, not change my way of doing things because the program can't adapt. It is enough of an aggravation that I just won't use the program if it will not adapt to my way.
For me it is like the shortcut for copy cut paste. If you went into another program that used different shortcuts for these, you would just ditch the program. Ctrl +C and Ctrl +V are just too ingrained to change. The mouse wheel zoom for me is like that.