Well, I don't know that I'd go so far in Kata-bashing. If you're out to learn practical street self defense, kata is probably useless.
If you're out to master an art, kata is as important as dry fire practice to a Master Sniper. It teaches muscle memory, instinctive movement, speed, power and fluidity...unfortunately, it does so only over a very long period of time.
Granted, few of us aspire to becoming a Yuck Foo Grandmaster....few of us aspire to being a Master Rifleman (1,000 yard plus). But if you *do* wish to become either, expect to put thousands of hours into actions that are worthless to the general (and competent) HtH trainee or combat shooter.