Who mentioned Hurd? I didn't. That's not even a good strawman.
You mentioned Crunchbang used a stock Debian kernel as a seeming downside, so I picked a facetious example of a non-stock kernel. You may commence your giggling.
Why is the comparison point a netinstall? And why, on a system that can be upgraded from version to version, does anyone care very much about configuring it the first time? You only have to install once, not repeatedly. How hard is a netinstall anyway?
Because that's how I've set up my Openbox desktops previously? I tend to distro-hop, so I end up reconfiguring quite a bit. If you're upgrading the same system for years, you're right, it probably doesn't make that much of a difference to you.
As for the website not giving you a bulleted list of features... who cares? There's no Crunchbang copywriters, no marketing department, etc; just the guy who makes the distro. If you're mortally offended by the About page, then by all means, don't download an ISO - or, hop on over to the Crunchbang forums and offer to help them out with their website.
There are plenty of great distros to use out there, including vanilla Debian. If Crunchbang doesn't qualify as an officially blessed, fully-qualified Linux distribution in your eyes... I think we'll find the will to go on living & using it ourselves. ;)