It is rather interesting that it took me about a year to start wondering about this
I had studied Kempo for a while and was trying to figure out why I lost interest in that but have managed to be much more dedicated to Aikido. At first I thought it was that Aikido is not a pummel-you-oppenent-until-he-can-no-longer-fight style of martial art, while the Kempo had "Death Techniques". But after doing a few choke techniques, it struck me that Aikido can be just as deadly, it does have a different mentality applied to it though. As a few posts here have pointed out, Aikido favors the life giving sword.