Compartmentalization...need to know basis is the counter argument to the 400K + personnel involved. They don't have to be frickin liars in order if they aren't in the inner circle...
So they can build U2 spy planes back then but send up a piece of poorly constructed crap on one of our most important missions of all time? You think that's a reasonable/logical conclusion? Are you saying that the astronauts brought tape with them knowing that the design flaw was going to necessitate same once they landed?
Billions spent and this is what you accept as the best outcome?
Maybe they utilized people with your thought processes/skills (did they have Gorilla tape/glue back then?) rather than employing actual machinists and engineers. ;)