Hi Dan (btw email wink wink)
Let me take stab at one of your points:
Talking point #1
What on this earth would cause almost 100% of the people going in one direction (many of whom have invested significant portions of their lives to it)....to entirely change direction?
I think that is a compelling talking point.
Let me not directly address your question so much as in pointing out something else. Now I'm speculating here, but my best guess is that a portion of readers are simply put off by the tone. Knowing you in person, your statements don't strike me that way -- at all - but is there a certain amount of bluntness? I'd say so, but that in itself does not refute the facts.
Speaking of which….
What for you are facts, may simply be an opinion of yours to others. I have frequently wondered why so many of those shihan and higher ranking teachers are not forthcoming. Of course I can sympathize with implications of which I have no knowledge and that do not personally concern nor affect me. OTOH without the support of verifications, it does turn Dan's "facts" thus far mostly into "claims." (btw I'm not saying no one of stature has supported you: Howard Popkin, Allen Beebe, Marc Abrams, George Ledyard to name just a few, have done so directly. Indirectly it is an established FACT that Bill Gleason trains under you. I'm mostly implying that the Aikido community at large would, perhaps, be more inclined not to question these "claims" once credible Sensei X, Y and Z openly state that this "stuff" had them change their direction…entirely!
Thus, it first requires a willingness of people to accept your claims as facts. Once that's done…well…