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The U.S. military thinks we're one step closer to peak oil, the point at which oil demand will forever outstrip oil supply, and therefore we're one step closer to fighting over the last rusting cans of gasoline like so many scraps of meat. On the plus side, we're also one step closer to finally equipping our cars with superchargers and massive gas tanks rigged with explosives a la Mad Max and his archetypal peak-oil sled, "the last of the V-8 Interceptors."

Part of the problem is speculation: individual and institutional investors betting on higher future oil prices. Another big factor is the very weak U.S. dollar. But the bulk of the reason oil and gas prices have climbed so high is that age-old Economics 101 supply/demand equation. Global demand, especially by developing countries, continues to grow, while supply does not.

Oil hit a new record high price of $111.80 yesterday morning, but settled at $105.68 later, a drop of $4.42 for the day. While we're not yet ready to suggest that an end has come to the daily rise in oil prices, seeing the price for a barrel of crude drop, if only for a day, is probably a bit of a relief to some. Before yesterday's drop in prices, many analysts were suggesting that the falling value of the dollar was the largest cause for the recent upward trend in oil prices. Another contributi

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