A downside of payment in stocks or stock options is that it dilutes the shares and depresses the stock price, over the long term. This is one reason companies do share buy-backs.Why exactly are you so opposed to stock-based compensation? What does it matter if the company pays the CEO $X in cash, or $X worth of equity (or $X worth of options)? I don't think the stock/options approach is inherently more favorable to the CEO (it has benefits, but also drawbacks).
IMO, if compensation by stock options were done in reasonable quantities and with sufficiently long vesting periods, it'd be well worth the relatively minor dilution.