A few months above $4 will be crippling.
If the average drivers drives 15,000 miles per year and his auto averages 25 mpg that is 600 gallons per year.
If gas goes from 3.50 to say, $4.25 that is an additional $450 per year or $37.50 per month.
The 2 percent SS tax holiday is about 40 to 50 dollars per month extra for wage earners. So this gas price hike will not be nearly as devastating as the last $4 gas.
In addition, the core rate of inflation is still low. Last time that gas hit $4 the core right was rising, causing other purchases to cost more.
So, although I readily agree $4 is not good, it may not spell catastrophe for the economy either.