Yeah, when the prices initially started dropping and news sources said it was from reduced demand, I emailed my brother (who, along with his neighbor, is also on a quest for better mileage) and groused that we could keep this going... but wouldn't.
High gas prices may hurt, but I'm afraid as soon as the price went down most people sighed with relief and went right back to what they were doing before. In very real ways, we drivers are in control of fuel prices, but it seems few add two and two anymore.
Relative to current prices, I snagged $2.48 this week at an Exxon of all places -- they're usually premium-priced but it was actually the lowest in the area that day.
I believe that the price spike was partly due to the summer olympics in China. China was buying a lot of oil leading up to and durring the olympics to get ready for and run the games. Once the games were over and the news crews left the prices started to come down, but then it was hurricaine season which causes the prices to rise again. Throw in Chavez who has said "We can use the price of oil as a weapon against the United States", and OPEC not shying away from an opportunity to raise prices - well it made for a very unusual summer. Now that the olympics and hurricaine season are over, consumption has dropped, and our refineries are up & running again we are seeing a sharp drop in oil prices and futures pricing.
Also consider this - I've mentioned it before, but OPEC knows which side their bread is buttered. They know if supply isn't increased to bring prices down the US will seek other alternatives and then we won't be buying oil from them at all. They know that we will pay higher prices in a short term, but if prices remained high in the long term we would look elsewhere for alternative energy. They don't want that. When we were seriously looking at alternatives in the 70's & 80's all of a sudden they started producing like crazy until the price of gasoline fell to below $1/gal. It stayed there until we abandoned our efforts in researching alternative energy. What we need to do is keep the research going despite what the price of gasoline does to break free of this hold that OPEC and Chavez holds on us.
EDIT: I should also note, that because of that statement Chavez has made I stopped buying Citgo and 7-11 fuel all togeather. He can say whatever he wants, but I choose to not purchase fuel from him.