How would Slashdotters explain the proliferation and existance of such unusable user interfaces and design choices?
Gaslighting occurs at the workplace in the form of bullies unscheduling things you’ve scheduled, misplacing files and other items that you are working on and co-workers micro-managing you and being particularly critical of what you do and keeping it under their surveillance. They are watching you too much, implying or blatantly saying that you are doing things wrong when, in fact, you are not. As you can see, this is a competitive maneuver, a way of making you look bad so that they look good;
In addition to above, I'd add Poring over every source-code commit, and then criticising it even if the criticism is contradictory to what he previously said.
Raising things through the official channels is out of the question, as is confronting the colleague in question directly as he is considered something of a superstar engineer who has been in the company for decades and has much more influence than any ordinary engineer.
So, what do slashdotters recommend (other than leaving or escalating via the official channels)?
A mathematician is a device for turning coffee into theorems. -- P. Erdos