Oil will shoot up past $120 soon, but that also is because the 'brilliant' recent moves of the Federal Reserve have the dollar rapidly moving towards toilet paper territory. With Chavez moving a chunk of his troops towards the Colombian border, does that leave him vulnerable to another 2002 style coup attempt? His haste to prove himself as a big man could open a crack that a quick moving operation could exploit.
I'd argue that this 'whitewashing' is a recent event on L&O...all of the episodes cited have occurred in the past couple of years. Not coincidentally, the last two seasons have been clearly the worst in the show's proud history.