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Getting it partly right on weather vs. climate

By Michael Fumento

Eugene Robinson in today's Washington Post protests that global warming skeptics are using the current (though very long) cold snap in the mid-Atlantic region, which encompasses the nation's capital, to confuse weather - a short-term phenomenon - with climate.

Proof of global warming?

Robinson, who last year won the Pulitzer Prize for commentary, correctly notes that, "the Earth is really, really big. It's so big that it can be cold here and warm elsewhere - and this is the key concept - at the same time. Even if it were unusually cold throughout the continental United States, that still represents less than 2 percent of the Earth's surface."

True enough. And he adds:

Those who want to use our harsh winter to 'disprove' the theory that the planet's atmosphere is warming should realize that anecdotal evidence always cuts both ways. Before the Winter Olympics in Vancouver, crews were using earth-movers and aircraft to deposit snow on the ski runs - the winter had been unusually warm. Preliminary data from climate scientists indicate that January, in terms of global temperatures, was actually hotter than usual. Revelers participating in Rio de Janeiro's annual carnival, which ended Tuesday, sweltered in atypical heat, with temperatures above 100 degrees. Fortunately, the custom during carnival is not to wear much in the way of clothing.

Again, true enough. And regrettably I once again missed going to the Rio Carnival, but hope springs eternal.

But here's what he doesn't say. His people have long played exactly the same game.

There's a wonderful website that keep a more or less comprehensive list of all the things that warmists have attributed to "global climate change" - and mind you, the very term "global climate change' was coined precisely to be able to tie any change, including things associated with cooling - to the effects of greenhouse gases. One glance at the site blows you away. I want you to click on this link right now and not continue with this blog until you have.

No. Stop. You didn't click on the link. Do it now.

Okay, the point is made, isn't it? It includes everything from "acne" to "yellow fever" with "short-nosed dogs endangered" in between. And there are lots of instances of weather change.

In fact, time and again cold weather and its fall-out, including blizzards, have been attributed to "global climate change."

This is from an article of mine that appeared 13 years ago:

But there it was, the cover of the Jan. 22 Newsweek: "Blizzards, floods & hurricanes: Blame global warming." There also was the New York Times front-page article by William K. Stevens headlined "Blame global warming for the blizzard" and a nationally syndicated article by environmentalist Jessica Matthews that ran under titles such as "Brrr, global warming brings our blizzard."

Moreover, I note. Moreover, I say for emphasis, while this was a perfect opportunity for Robinson to show he was playing fair, he could have pointed out they're doing it even now.

Moreover, Robinson could have seen it in his own newspaper from just days ago.

There it was, right in the headline of a column by uber-environmentalist Bill McKibben, "Washington's Snowstorms, Brought to You by Global Warming."

Time magazine also argues "climate change could in fact make such massive snowstorms more common, even as the world continues to warm."

And of course I could go on and on, but point made.

If you live in the mid-Atlantic, don't go out without a coat. But hypocrisy is a mantle never worn well.

February 19, 2010 10:49 AM  ·  Global Warming  ·  Recent Posts