Maarten De Queecker
There is a documentary on S. Seagal as an aikidoist on youtube. Yes, his aikido is a lot harder than most of us are used to, but he wants it to be effective on the street. The reason he might come across as a jerk might be because he "knows and expects excelence", to quote one of his students. He is probably not the kind of instructor you would go to if you only want to train twice a week, but rather the kind of instructor for people who want to devote their life to aikido. He has really high standards.
Excellent point! If you don't like his style of training, then just ignore it. It's not for everybody. I recently met a former student of his that has invited me to come and train with him one day. He did mention that the training was rather hard. He said that because he doesn't know what I am use to. I currently train in Chiba Sensei's style, which is another style that is thought to be "hard." If you have ever been to a seminar with him, some might say that he is a jerk, he's too rough, too brutal, and doesn't care about his uke. Many on the other hand don't see it that way. They see it as hard training that could lead to good self defense on the street. One thing Seagal wants from his students, is for them to really be able to handle themselves on the street, which is very different from handling uke in the dojo. It's a shame he is no longer teaching. I would like to attend a class and see for myself how he really is as a teacher.