Absolute power, how? What's to stop you from walking out?
I understand how cults work. But in order for a cult to have power, you have to buy into the idea that the cult is the sole avenue to something that you absolutely have to have. Do you have any evidence that such is true for the majority of aikido practitioners?
In 16 years training in a variety of styles I have been aware of one dojo - not one I was a member of - that I would consider a cult in that people allowed the dojocho to make decisions over things outside of their on the mat training. That's one out of a whole lotta dojos I"ve visited, trained at seminars w/ folks from, etc.