Federal Reserve Governor Gramlich gave a Speech on the Economic Impact of Rising Oil Prices. The following chart (from the talk) shows the market's belief that the current increase in oil price is for the long term. He also presents inflation-adjusted data and a good graph of showing the extra money per barrel we pay because of hopefully short-term issues like Middle East Instability.

After Kerry wins the election, it'll be interesting to see what happens to the prices and spread.