I spend about 90% of my wow life doing instances I outgear. It's the nature of the beast when it comes to warcraft as the instances stay the same but the rewards increase as new tiers are put in the game. With that in mind, I really feel like paladin aoe has taken a massive hit. I'm all for separating out single target vs multi-target, but it seems like the multi target aspect was not really put back in.
A lot of people will say, but in cataclysm aoe doesn't matter because instances will be hard. For sure I agree with that, until we have a higher ilvl average and the instances once again become trivial.
I use heroic magister's in TBC as an example - the people with sub gear or average gear had a hard time with that instance, were forced to CC their pulls and take their time. Then people like me in sunwell gear blew through it aoe'ing everything down. I see the same thing happening in cataclysm.
With that being said, is it possible to re-examine divine storm? It seems to be under performing with the revamp it had on beta according to some parsing of player much better than me. Again, 90% of my play time revolves around going through farmed content. I'd like to be able to have a sufficiently satisfying damage output in that situation and currently I feel like I don't/can't.
On live, I spec as a protection paladin and use my ret gear to get my 8-9k dps in heroics. I do think that is a little backwards. I also want to point out that I think single target dps is really good. I'm doing about 12k dps on non-icc bosses, even with the incredibly high amount of RNG build into ret.