Re: Hombu Culture
After o'sensei died, a lot of changes came to aikido. The new doshu, Kissomaru, gave Saito one position, that of developing weapons forms.
I never heard o'sensei comment on the counting of techiques, you may be right, but, on the other hand, he counted, techniques himself, ikkyo, nikyo, etc.
Kissomaru didn't teach too many weapon techniques, because he tried to be true to the later wishes of his dad, and make 'ki' be the most important part of the art,
The weapons techniques just make you 'bad'. It seems to me that aikido never caught on so large in the west until those weapon techniques came out there.
All those techniques in the 31 jo kata came from o'sensei, but Saito developed it. He'd been working on that kata for years. We went through many 'warm-up' katas before he got to that one.
Still had to be approved by Kissomaru before it could be spread out into the world, however.