Stop. I agree, I think shomen strikes are a waste of time.....
I guess I didn't express myself well. Replace shomen with any techique in my original statment and that will always be true in the kata environment (my definition, previously given). I can deny ikkyo in a kata environment to anyone, regardless of how skilled they are, how excellent their timing is, etc.... That's not because I'm a good aikidoka or whatever ... that's the nature of kata. I can keep the prescribed attack to the presribed target and move in such a way as to make ikkyo a virtually impossible response. That's easy. Anybody can do that. So what is this environment good for? Instruction.
This is just my definition of kata. Your definition is just smaller, less inclusive.
Then we have different definitions. Call it what you like. I still submit that in the environment I call "kata", it is a poor use of resources to worry about timing for the reasons that I've tried to explain.
The bulk of your post, as I understand it, is that you submit a different definition of "kata" wherein working on timing (among other things) is good use of resources. Whatever you want to call it. If there aren't prescribed roles, specific attacks and specific targets, then I could see how working on timing may have value, provided the environment is truly alive and dynamic.