I'm absolutely convinced at this point that Ford is not dead. Delores killed a host that was meant to look like Ford. I think what I see developing is that Ford is a firm believer in Asimov's three laws;
A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
A robot must obey the orders given it by human beings except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Laws.
The only exception here of course to the first law is when said human is interfering with Ford's plans.
It really feels like the central conflict here is that Ford believes in control, whereas Arnold is about sentience and the evolution of machines into independent beings.