makes no difference. high gas prices (usa) killed demand by about 3%. this is fairly inelastic. as the rest of the developing world pushes ahead. yoy retail sales in china were up 27%, doesn't sound like they're having any problems, while they add about 30m cars on the road per year. i have a feeling india is much the same. an analyst i follow says it's not a question of "if" the us will decide to drill offshore, but "when" the us will drill offshore.