I'd argue that a language designed by need over time will out perform languages designed by "want". Yes, stock JS is pretty bad (ES5 anyways). But as the language has exponentially picked up adoption in both front end and back end use cases (not to mention CLI tooling, electron, hybrid apps etc. etc.), the quality of life additions that are added in each new version of the ECMA script make JS more and more appealing.
It could of been better from the start, but JS is where the web landed in the browser, so the world has run with it to improve it.
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