I agree that specialization is very important, and that no one can do everything well. I do think that in the web design discipline (which is distinct from the graphic design discipline), there is necessarily some degree of overlap. Just as print designers needs to understand enough about the print process to design printable work, a web designer needs to understand enough about the web to design websites well. In my opinion that means some degree of coding knowledge.
And let’s get real for a second: calling HTML/CSS coding is a bit of a stretch. It’s not C++. It’s not even PHP. It’s a skill set that is completely within the grasp of most designers.
And because these skills are things the Bearded designers already had, it made sense to shift our process this way. Because of those changes, we’re seeing benefits.
That doesn’t mean you have to work this way, of course. I’d really encourage you and everyone else to just reexamine your process, and see what about it does and does not make sense right now. Getting stuck in ruts is easy; don’t just do it because that’s how you do it. But if your process seems to be working for you and you don’t see any problems, congratulations! Keep up the good work and enjoy the bounty of your labors.