One would expect the cream of scientific and engineering excellence to rise to the top, and in exchange for all our money that is invested in it, produce the best that money could buy.
Alas, what really happens, is someone pushes a particular design beyond the point where it should have ceased, for no better reason than they are dismayed by the prospect of losing it all.
So, the inevitable marketing campaign begins, where more and more money is spent trying to get the damn thing to work properly, while the budget for 'convincing' important people of its worth, climbs out of control until the end-game is reached where so much has been spent, that it becomes the only option we can afford so we press on, urged by the people who have been enjoying the expenses-paid ride and are planning their retirements for just before their baby becomes operational.
So many wonderful things in our past have come to us via this route that one would think we could have thought up an antidote for it by now. But here we are again. Our Harriers are gone and the F-35's will be here sometime never, so it's time we glued AK-47's onto Gladiator wings, and employed small boys to sit in wing pods to keep the magazines filled - because soon we're gonna need them.