I ordered a 60" ST60 direct from Panasonic on 7/11, got it delivered on 8/2. Unfortunately, the screen was broken on it so I had to return it. But I talked to a Panasonic rep for a while trying to figure out how to get a new unit.
Basically the ordering is an absolute disaster since the demand is so high, and there aren't any real estimates on how long it will take to get them. They're producing them as quickly as possible, and when they do get a shipment in some go to retailers, and some fill the direct from Panasonic orders. They never know how many are going to get shipped from the factory (FYI shipments come in every Sunday), so they just give that 8-12 day estimate. It doesn't sound like this is going to change anytime soon either, so I highly doubt the price will go down from $1499.
They told me that once Panasonic gets my broken unit back they'll send me a replacement if they have any in their warehouse (ha), otherwise they'll refund me.