yeah, the front brake does most of the braking anyway, when you brake properly. Never just slam them, ever, ever ,ever. Kinda like a car, even in emergencies, you should try to ease on, and ease off. Grabbing a big 'ol hand 'o lever will only lead to loss of control.
Anywho, what did you use to clean them? A degreaser? Only ever use soap and water to clean your pads, or just replace them. What kind of oil? Road crap, or was it hydro fluid? If it was fluid, you need to have them looked at, as you may have a leak.