The prices of the 2012 models are going to look a lot like the 2011 models, except if you needed to guess which direction to move them, you should look to move them toward zero, not away from zero.
For example, the VT30 was introduced at an MSRP of $4499 (I believe). So a VT50 at a price of $3999 should not shock you. A price of $3499 (MSRP) should shock you. A price as high as last year's is not out of the question, but is unlikely given the competitive forces in the industry. The above hypothetical discussion is based on conversations with Panasonic, but quotes no one, uses figures for illustrative purposes only, and should not be construed as suggesting anyone specifically intimated a particular MSRP for any model.
There is no difference in HDMI cables. If you can see the picture without visible dropouts or sparklies, the cable is working at 100%. No other cable will display a better version of that picture. You're simply wrong if you think there is a better digital cable than one that is already working.