While I don't necessarily have a problem with either side of the debate, in Everyday Things, he laid out scientific, objective suggestions for making a design successful. If there is an objective method of designing, they should be followed.
I myself would prefer to have attractive appliances, but I do not think that that is a defining aspect of the object. I like objects that are easy to use, or that have great functionality (even if they require more attention to learn fully), if the design is emotionally pleasing, that is a bonus.
I think designers should worry about how their product will be perceived by their target audience, and should attempt to make it attractive in all aspects. I think that the primary goal is that the device functions properly, and is easy to use with respective to whatever its intended purpose is.
I accept that people like good looking things, but I think the functionality of the device should be the designer's main concern.