So in short, what are your thoughts on keeping Aikido pure or making sure that new techniques fit within the general 'look' of what we understand Aikido to be? I don't profess to be a greater master than O-Sensei or the other Aikido greats...but surely there is room for inclusion of more effective techniques that fit in the philosophy of Aikido?
Reuben, I am actually with you on most of those points, but I would look to training in terms of bad technique. In the beginning, the uke has to be compliant, because nage has never done the technique, and needs to understand how it is supposed to feel to start with, and move on from there. But as students progress, compliance needs to start going away. I'll never remember the first time my uke took an actual swing at me. I performed the technique, a bit sloppy, but I did it, and after I pinned him I was in shock. "Dude! You swung at me!" "Yep, and you did it right. Good job."
If you have anyone who has achieved any kind of rank without the occasional "real" attack, that is what needs to be remedied.