If you are only changing client-side resources for VF development, remember, you can reference those from anywhere. You shouldn't be inlining your JS or CSS anyway, so while you're fine-tuning, why not stick them in your own content server, edit them there, and then the refresh is immediate.
I've done this two ways.
One is to run a local static web server and reference it in my VF pages via localhost. This obviously only works if you are writing and testing on the same machine as the server. There was a good blog article on this in the developerforce blogs not too long ago.
The other is to serve static content from a public web server. I've typically done this with a heroku instance. There is a small lag while you push to your heroku repo, but nothing like waiting for your test code to run.
The reason we force you to run tests is so you don't screw up your production system! As has been said, all development should be done in a sandbox or developer edition org then pushed to production after thorough testing. So I would still suggest these techniques, but in reality you should be doing them in a system that is ring-fenced from your production org.