I know that I'm going to be bucking the current trend in "conventional wisdom" with this.
However, as far as I can see the main cause of the current rapid rise in the price of gasoline in the U.S. has more to do with the devaluation of the U.S. dollar. Rather than any increase in demand on the world crude oil market, supposedly caused by China and/or India.
For example, take a look at how the Canadian & U.S. dollar compare over approx. eight years. Then cross reference that with how both the Canadian & U.S. dollars compare to the Euro over the same period.
02-JAN-2001 1 CD = 0.67 USD
14-MAY-2008 1 CD = 1.00 USD
02-JAN-2001 1 CD = 0.71 Euro
14-MAY-2008 1 CD = 0.65 Euro
02-JAN-2001 1 USD = 1.06 Euro
14-MAY-2008 1 USD = 0.65 EuroNotice that the Canadian dollar hasn't changed much at all against the Euro, But the U.S. dollar has reacted almost the same to the Canadian dollar & Euro (i.e. lost close to half its value), and that isn't the result of increased demand on the world crude oil market. But it darn sure is going to effect the price we pay for everything.
The above is courtesy of the financial mess we've allowed to develop in the U.S. and the recent actions of the U.S. Federal Reserve. You remember, pumping all those wonderful little pieces of paper printed with such nice colored ink, into the economy, and repeatedly dropping the interest rate. Trying to compensate for the lousy economics we've practiced.
Heck, if the U.S. started drilling in all those areas that are currently taboo, and by the grace of GOD hit the mother-load of all crude oil deposits. It wouldn't do much, because the fact is there hasn't been any investment in increasing our refining capacity so we couldn't do much with it. Don't know, but you might be surprised if you go take a look at the increase in the volume of gasoline (note that is gasoline, not crude oil) that the U.S. now imports.