Re: Basics, basics, basics
If by doing basics, people are relying on wrist twisties and throws done over and over to have you get it...well, good luck with that. I believe this is yet another dead end. There are many very serious and committed Aikido-ka who DID and DO practice the basic techniques and remain largely unimpressive..several I know even say they remain personally unimpressed with their own art.
On the other hand if you mean the exercises Ueshiba did and showed; you can watch any number of people practicing the exercises that Ueshiba did (example: Terry Dobson and Ueshiba) and it is obvious that they are not doing the same thing. Great material, not adequately explained, can lead to really crappy results.
This is not something that just plagues Aikido, it plagues all the arts. I once asked a Daito ryu teacher how many people in his art did he consider to be any good. He thought about it and said ...."Two." So many of the arts that have specific drills/ kata/ forms, whatever you want to call them for building power and have failed (whether by intent or neglect) to convey their meaning to their own membership. Thus we can end up practicing hollow forms, hoping and waiting in vain, for something really cool to happen. We need to look for meaningful ways to train that brought the founders of these arts true power, beyond techniques.