I don't think Dan's been saying any different previously; I'm reading the same thing I think he's always saying, I guess it comes down to terminology and interpretation.
We all read things through a filter composed of our experiences and arrive at a conclusion based on those which can lead to all sorts of misunderstandings and seeming contradictions.
Sometimes when someone uses a word it doesn't mean what you (one) think it means.
Most times I use words that do mean what they say and not what others think they mean too.
Dan's types of questions he poses are standard procedure in my way of Aikido. Thus I don't think it's down to culture or hiding things but more down to enquiry on both sides of the coin, teacher and student.
Unfortunately there is not enough and that has always been the case.