This seems to me to be a philosophical question. Indeed, if the uptime and more importantly availability is higher by the purported crash and burn (taking liberties with the slash and burn deforestation technique) method, who is to say it is less useful or less valid? Indeed, to espouse skills over delivering for the client seems to be missing the point. It seems to be standing on some pedagogical imperative that knowledge is somehow of more value in the workplace than delivery.
Now - having said that - don't get me wrong. I have seen entirely too many *nix sysadmins (full disclosure: I got an RHCE in 2003) who don't know where the network config files are because they only know the GUI, and are hired by a team of people who have never logged into a *nix box. However, I think the ill that is most egregious is not that it sets some moral and ethical imperative fo fixing rather than reloading (or in this case, recovering from a VM image) a server, but the fact that it misses the point that there has been a dearth of qualified IT candidates since the dawn of our industry and that the fixes to this don't have to do with how we fix a server, but how we hire and more importantly who we hire. As is everything in IT, garbage in == garbage out.
Finally - I absolutely agree with the Infoworld argument. It assumes an unexpected failure within the server, not some external thing that needs to be diagnosed and fixed. If your app crashes because the SQL table isn't there on the SQL server you don't control, rebooting ain't going to do a hill of beans worth of good.