I made a comment in CyranoVR's journal (summing up bltzu's comment), and thought it was a lot of my opinion put into a couple sentences:
Programming is 20% design, 10% implementation, 5% testing, 65% maintainence.
Perl makes 10% of it cake.
Java makes 65% of it cake.
Now take your pick ;-)
That being said, Perl is great for small project, and Java is much better suited for major/large projects (where maintanence is much more of an aspect).
I'll use /. as an example. It was written in perl, because it was a little college project, but it grew into this massive project. Now maintanence is a bear (find bugs on Wednesday deliveries!), and (I believe) if it was rewritten in Java, using fancy technologies (struts, hibernate, Xdoclet, etc...) it wouldn't be nearly as difficult to manage.
Feel free to discuss/argue (you know you want to) ;-)