UAC is fine, but no panacea. A program may be a trojan and that program may naturally require admin priviledges. But it does allow you to know what programs you gave access, so it's not just "Every program I've run could've caused havoc".
I've never waited 10 minuttes for UAC, if that were the case it would be turned off. Perhaps 5-10 seconds in extreme cases. Annoying as that may be.
I've learned to live with UAC, although for a while the file level permission requests drove me to turn it off.