It is necessary that Debian itself releases. That some spin-offs (or subprojects, or however you want to call them) like Ubuntu release is not enough. No, Debian itself need to release. We need to do that for the sake of our users and for our own sake. There are two major reasons for that:
  • First, how dare we say that "our users and the free software community are our priorities" if we do our users the great dis-service that they don't have a stable basis for their use? And, running unstable is not a good idea unless you have much insight into debian, including reading many mailing lists. For most people running servers, this is not acceptable. And please remember, our social contract speaks about users, not only about computer hackers.
  • Second, we also need to release for our own sake. Preparing for a release gives us a good hint which packages need more attention, or should even be dropped at all from the distribution. A release is a tough quality control, and we need it from time to time. Also, excluding a package from testing is an easier step than dropping it directly from the archive, but it servers well as warning shot. (Not all removals from testing are meant as that, however.)
Please note that that all was _not_ about sarge specifically, but about release per se. We need it, we want it, we should do it.