The final fleecing, and then goodbye.
When the war in Iraq started, a gallon of gasoline was about $1.35. Average (informal result based on googling the phrase "2007 average gasoline price" and reading the headlines talking about monthly changes) gasoline at the pumps in 2007 spent most of the year in the neighborhood of $3.25. Already in 2008 the price has risen to a shade under $4.00 and noone doubts it will pass $4.00, and could easily get to $4.50. The home ATM is shut off, so Americans will be cutting back on unneccessary spending. Equally dependent on American consumption, are the oil companys for sales and earnings. In 2001 (the most recent year I could find figures for easily enough for this paranoid rant) Americans consumed 105 billion gallons of gasoline. As American incomes have not risen since 2001, and many Americans have already given up luxury spending like health insurance, where are they gong to find the money to buy the gasoline they need to get to work.
If 105 billion gallons of gasoline increase by $1.50 each it will consume the entire $160 billion tax rebate plan and redistribute that wealth to the oil producers.
$160 billion should tide the oil producers over nicely as emerging markets replace declining US consumption.
Congratulations Dick, you win.