I'm not at STOC, but I see the debate about "conceptual" papers appeared again at the business meeting, as it rightly should. It's obviously an area where there's disagreement, in terms of whether there is an actual problem currently, as well as what to do about it. It's something that, as a community, we need to talk and think about.
Rather than engage in debate specifics, let me suggest (yet another) way of thinking about the problem. As a community, we need to think in terms of our field having a regular check-up. Not that we think there's any emergency, but as a community we act like our primary care physician and look at where we are, and make sure that problems that need to be looked into are being looked into.
As part of that check-up, I think it's reasonable to ask if our community has produced a healthy number of good concepts. (This, to me, is the heart of the debate.) At the end of the day, in many important ways (including NSF funding, prestige in comparison with other areas of CS, possibly even job production) the production of concepts is at least one significant way in which we'll be judged. Arguably, it's the most important way; certainly externally to CS, and to large part internally to CS, and even within TCS, people remember and latch onto concepts more than technical details.
I think the vision workshop before STOC played something of this role -- transforming concepts into nuggets for an NSF-style audience -- albeit looking more forward that backward. As a community, though, perhaps we need some metrics to go along with these checkups. We need some goals to let us know if we're being successful, and numbers to let us know if we're achieving those goals.
My bias is that one way to see if we're succeeding in concept production is to consider how much our work is used (measured say by citations) outside of TCS. If we come up with a good concept, often it will show by being spread along outside of our limited community. I know that's just one metric, but it's one I like. We should regularly see how FOCS/STOC conferences are doing in terms of the concepts making their way into other communities, and compare it to other theory conferences, and other conferences in related fields (say, with the International Symposium on Information Theory). We should see which theory papers become highly cited outside TCS and, when they don't appear in FOCS/STOC, we should question why, since FOCS/STOC are supposed to be our premier conferences.
And, personally, I think we need to think of other check-up items we ought to be looking into. (Example: how is hiring going in TCS? How many people are leaving the area after getting their Ph.D.s? Why?) Overall, I think these debates and discussions are quite healthy for the community, and we actually need more of them.