Good points all. I think one reason yoshinkan technique (kihon waza, in any case) uses atemi where uke must often block and move
is because of the very factors you and I are speaking of, David. Otherwise, by being out of range, not only do you create a suki, but a big, ugly, whopping one.
I do think, however, that George addressed that very point...by saying that he must be in range to actually place the atemi for the physiological responses he speaks of to work.
Christian, your statement is a textbook definition of yoshinkan atemi...where there is an opening in the technique (such as in kotegaeshi), use atemi to fill it. I'm not so sure the finer points are over your head...you seem to understand the topic just fine.
As for final answers...I'm sure there cannot be any...but this kind of discussion is exactly why I find this site so rewarding.