Re: Poll: Who determines the outcome of a technique in aikido?
I don't think it is un-answerable. I started Aikido in the UK and was trained to believe uke falls where uke wants to go - in the direction of their attack etc. But in Japan, my Sensei would make everyone fall exactly where he wanted them to fall, thus he could make it look like even a beginner was a good uke - he actually forced his beginners to go where he wanted them to. Sure it hurt a bit, but uke soon learns where to go! I have seen several Sensei do this and have now changed my outlook - I think both perspectives are OK. Accordingly, you have choice - you can let uke fall where they will (uke decides, kind of), or, you can make them go where you want them to go (tori decides). Thus, in training, you shouldn't have one without the other - both are options.
For example, on the top of a flat-roofed building, knife-weilding madman rushes, you duck, over he goes - it was uke's choice. Same situation but it's your brother, you do irimi-iriminage and send him back onto the concrete - it was your choice.
And if both options are available, then mixing them together mid-technique is possible - inevitable even.