Here's my take on it:
If you want a blockchain to store value in a trustless manner, then tokens of value must be intrinsic to that blockchain. Without tokens of value you could still transmit value by trading IOUs etc, but that of course wouldn't be trustless.
Token-less blockchains (i.e. append-only databases) seem to be niche, i.e. big companies are researching how then can use them for their own specialized needs. Therefore they're not really competing with Bitcoin itself which is why I don't see the need for all the tension.
You can take advantage of the redundancy properties of blockchains for interesting things like a distributed github for example. But maybe you still need an underlying token to charge users to not spam the network. I dont know, thats why I hope people try new things and innovate instead of just spreading FUD against trying new things with blockchains.