fsync() in combination with a journal will protect against data loss.
But yes, a journal by itself has as its primary feature avoiding long fsck times. One nice thing with ext4 is that fsck times are reduced (typically) by a factor of 7-12 times. So a TB file system that previously took 20-25 minutes might now only take 2-3 minutes.
If you are replicating your data anyway because you're using a cluster file system such as Hadoopfs, and you're confident that your data center has appropriate contingencies that mitigate against a simultaneous data-center wide power loss event (i.e., you have bat, and diesel generators, etc., and you test all of this equipment regularly), then it may be that going without a journal makes sense. You really need to know what you are doing though, and it requires careful design both at the hardware level, the data center level, as well as the storage stack above the local disk file system.