The only people who refer to it as a "Loudness War" are beardy weirdy real ale drinking music puritans who would rather audio signal compression didn't exist AT ALL!... and for whom I couldn't give a toss about.
It's not that I disagree with their sentiments though, but I think there is a wider issue which isn't being addressed... and that is the emergence and domination of electronic based music forms over the past 2 decades, and the relative stagnation of more traditional "band" music (i.e. Rock, metal, punk, emo, whatever...)
Rock (n' Roll) enjoyed being the coolest sound around for near on 40 years, but now has to compete against RnB/Hip Hop, Electronica (encompassing DnB, dubstep, techno, etc.)... so what can it, as a genre, and it's proponents do?
Well, it's stuffed in terms of any kind of real innovation - bands are still typically 1 singer, 1 guitarist, 1 bassist and 1x drummer, with the techniques for playing the same as they always were. The amps and effect pedals have also changed very little over the years and so the sounds bands can make are similarly limited to the "same old, same old" sounds.
Heavy compression, in essence, is one of the few areas of the music production process that Rock can "do" to compete.... and if you want to know why electronic music is heavily compressed, see Clubs/DJs/the-necessity-to-have-some-kind-of-standardised-dynamic-level-for-the-benefit-of-mixing