And part of this was a business model more on out-competing others in their central competencies. But that's one thing when you're apple bringing in the iPod. It's something else entirely when it means superficial copies with reduced performance at full price. I'm afraid Meade always looked after the pretty paint job more than design execution.
So, yes, I would guess they had many internal discussions about how to stamp out Celestron once and for all. Obviously they expected bringing Celestron to its knees would bring about a golden age. Instead, it created a large number of enemies, not only amongst other vendors who clearly saw an eventual threat, but amongst consumers who would never forgive that behavior, and had ready means for a lifetime of revenge.
There's a definition of waste for a business: Waste is anything you do your customers will not pay you more to do more of. It turns out amateur astronomers aren't interested in paying some company to destroy others in the hobby, so there was no hope for a direct benefit from doing this. But it also polarized the manufacturing community. Notice how after the Meade lawsuit against celestron, the RC manufacturers ganged up on Meade and their dealers in the RCX lawsuit. That was a tit-for-tat which obviously caught Meade by surprise. And I have to wonder if you ask for a quote as Meade if you get the same deal as anyone else.
Ask this question: what blood feuds are left in amateur astronomy with Meade's departure? It seems to me everyone else in the business learned something from this.
The impression I get is that Meade saw Celestron as their only competitor and set out to beat them, not by making and selling better products but by trying to destroy Celestron.
I'm referring to the patent wars of the early to mid 2000s on which we hear that Meade spent $15M. If the profits over that period had been increased by $15M their numbers would have looked considerably different.
Meanwhile in the real world there were all sorts of other manufacturers coming along, Synta, iOptron, GSO and so on. They occupied the middle ground, where I suspect most of the profit is, with practical, reliable equipment at a good price.