My initial thought when I read this was "who freakin cares." In the end as long as people climb safely and ethically, I don't give a rip if every piece belongs in a textbook and it takes 3 hours per pitch. Maybe the dude doesn't have the time to find regular partners and has the cash to pump in to a guide. As long as he's having a grand ol time, I don't care and it shouldn't really matter.
I get what you are saying. There's nothing wrong with climbing slow, but if the weather goes south and it's time to for the afterburners, such an approach can be bad. If someone wants to snail their way along, fine with me I guess, but I can't say it's the best approach.
Re: Al and above, this sort of thing strikes me more as learning curve than anything else. Maybe I'm wrong, but I think that if anyone climbs long enough, they will eventually move beyond the guide and develop speed, which is a function (partially) of confidence. The realization that nothing they do can be made 100% safe eventually settles inside them, and they choose to either keep climbing or not. Or they stay with a guide. Whatever.
Maybe they're socially awkward and a guide is the only way they can get a partner. All
climbers are socially awkward.
One of my buddies used to climb almost only with guides. In the end, he just felt more comfortable especially with his skill level and limited time.
Good for him for being honest with himself
He and I connected, and I fooled him in to thinking I'm a good partner. We got comfortable and have a good ol time. He still uses guides when he feels necessary, but it doesn't really matter.