Sorry, I haven’t written in a while. The wife and I just got back from our vacation in sunny Cancun. When I stepped off the plane in Orlando, I wondered if we had flown into the wrong airport. Had the plane been diverted to New York? Christ, its cold! This morning, there was frost on my car. FROST? In NY we keep a windshield scraper in the glove compartment for ice, (along with gloves imagine that). Do you know what I keep in my Florida glove compartment? Suntan lotion… also salt and lime in case I have to make an emergency margarita. I ended up scraping the ice off my windshield with a Cracker Barrel gift card that I found in my wallet. It worked out, because I certainly had no intention of ever eating at the Cracker Barrel.
This is the coldest winter I can remember, and I live in a state wear Hawaiian shirts are mandatory. I don't know how it works in other places but here in Orlando we are constantly being pulled over by the Florida Highway Patrol for shirt flower density checks. This is why we are particularly aware when temperatures dare to dip below 80.
So, what happened to global warming? Come on Nick, explain this one. After all, you are the Rational Crank. Or, as a relative said recently, maybe we should start calling you the Irrational Crank. (Yah, a regular Don Rickles, that one is)
So what IS up with global warming? Friday, Fox News reported that it was the first time it had snowed in every state in the union since 1976. What they didn’t report is the record high temperatures in Alaska and Washington State the week before. They also didn’t mention the record-breaking temperatures in New Zealand or that Australia experienced its second hottest year in history (2005 being the hottest).
Small highs and lows are not what are important. What’s important is the larger overarching trend. The graph is not going to be a straight arrow up. It’s going to be a saw tooth. This cold snap doesn’t mean a thing. “Weather” is not “climate.” “Weather” is what happens in your town today and tomorrow. “Climate” is what happens to the planet over years. John Stewart said it best when he showed a graph that indicated the average temperature in the US had steadily been going down since October. It’s called winter folks.
If anything, this weather might even be a product of the coming Climate Change. A few scientists are saying that this cold is a result of a breakdown of Arctic Oscillation, a current that keeps the cold trapped in the North Pole. Once this current is disrupted, the cold air dissipates throughout the rest of the planet. It’s like being outside and opening the door to your air conditioned house. Sure it’s cool at first but if you keep the door open eventually the house gets hot.
The other thing that might be happening is that a hotter planet means more moisture in the air which, in the short term, will mean more snow for some areas.
Conservatives are using this weather for political gain. Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) wrote that “it’s going to keep snowing in D.C. until Al Gore cries ‘uncle.’” And Sara Palin called evidence of global warming a "bunch of snake oil science." Read more:
The real shame here is that because of a freak cold snap, climate legislation probably won’t pass this year, and because we are heading into an election, it probably won’t pass next year either. So if the planet really does have a conscience and a soul, then with the help of Global Warming deniers, this extreme winter might have sealed the planets fate. I’m certainly not one to believe in Earth Spirits, but who knows; maybe this is Gaia’s way of committing suicide?