As I'm sure even you nongamers are aware due to the news lately the retail release of the PS3 was cursed by more demand than there was supply. This was no shock as Sony told us all ahead of time exactly how many units would be available at launch. This however was both a curse and a blessing. A blessing in that we knew what to expect (long lines and possibly no PS3) but a curse by giving the greedy a heads up.
Many of the people who preordered or managed to get a launch day PS3 had no intentions of keeping the console for their own enjoyment, rather they had more sinister (albeit genius) plans. Their plan was to make a grotesque amount of money on this shortage buying PS3s for $600 each and reselling them on eBay for upwards of $1200 each.
This problem has increased as December approaches. A single PS3 going for more than $5000. It boggles my mind. Greed benefiting from some rich person's impatience perhaps? Who knows but it's ridiculous. I cannot imagine, under any circumstance paying more than $500 for a gaming console and this is coming from someone who has been known to live off of instant Ramen and vitamins to support her gaming habit.