Yes I more or less think anything imaginable would be cheaper than the F35 at this point. Especially considering some of the systems you describe aren't available for it yet and a running massive cost overruns. I would suggest to you that any off the shelf option from America or Russia would come in at around 1/3 to 1/2 of the cost and provide the same capability.
We have sod all frigates and destroyers. Ships that we use day in and day out. Woot that we are buying carrier we intend to mothball right out of the dock and another which we will have no planes for.
SAMS have demonstrated themselves exceptionally well in history.
They took out the Israeli airforce which was using the same planes Argentina currently has at the time.
SAMS are superior to airborne launched misiles in that they are larger so they can have a greater engagement range.
While a surprise engagement could happen anywhere, where could it happen that we don't have aceess to land based airstrips exactly?
What intrests do we have that need a fleet arm to protect?
I understand that the capability is wanted, but there are other capabilities that are more wanted.
You might note that the Navy's SAM ship program costing the same as the carrier program was chosen in preference to it. SAMS are more wanted than an air arm.
Nimrod is the plane that lets our ICBM subs know that they have not been shadowed before going deep. There is quite simply no aircraft more vital to our national defence than this one was.
Repeat about the F35 as often as you like. It's bloody expensive. It's by no means the only airframe capable of being navalised in the world. That they have tried to make the airframe fit 3 different purposes is having precisely the same sort of issues we would expect in anyother such adaptation.
As previously noted, the Germans had no trouble adapting Russian airframes. I can't take the idea that we would be unable to do so very seriously.
I don't want the UK to place any future orders with this company. There is no need and it doesn't help the long term UK defence industry either.
Fairness has nothing to do with it. If it did they wouldn't be attaching F22 design costs to the aircraft. We can legally default if we like. They aren't coming in on time or on budget. Everyone else is dropping orders and we should do the same.