Dismissive of Peak Oil
I've come to the conclusion that people love to complain about the price of gasoline. I spose if I drove more often, I too would complain about the price of gas. (I'm thankful I don't shell out $100 a week for gas, which I would be, if I were to drive to/from work every day in a vehicle of my own.)
I see a very obvious reason why the price of gas is going up, but whenever I mention it to my gas consuming friends, they dismiss it as crazy paranoid theories. That reason being the imminent threat of Peak Oil. I don't mean to say that when the price of gas fluctuates a couple cents up and down over a weekend that Peak Oil is the cause... that's more likely due to smaller market factors. I mean overall. The price of a gallon of gas is $3.50+ out here in CA. I fully expect it to hit $4 by the end of the year. It's slowly inching higher, and it's not going to go back down.
Lamenting over back-in-the-day when gas was $1.50 or $2 or whatever... it's never gonna be that way again. Oil companies aren't stupid... they've now proven they can get $100 for a barrel of oil and we'll still pay it. They also know that their product is gonna run out -- and soon. Why is it so unimaginable that the reason gas prices are so high is because they're trying to get as much money as they can before their production runs dry? Imagine what the price of gas will be when we're on the downward slope and oil production starts dropping? As it is current models predict that point is within the next 5 years. Any industry as huge and powerful as Oil thinks way beyond a mere 5 years. They see their demise on the horizon and they're provisioning for later.
There's very little we as consumers can do about the rising prices, as long as capitalism still rules supreme... so do what you can: use as little gas as possible.
If anything, I see this spike in oil prices as somewhat of a good thing, as necessity is the mother of invention. There's more research in alternative energy going on now than ever. More energy being put into alternate modes of transportation, redesigning mass transit, etc.
But then again, I don't buy gas very often.