It snowed here yesterday briefly, on the outskirts of D.C. But I’m not fooled, even if Sean Hannity likely is. Global warming is real though Hannity’s reaction would likely be, “Hah! It snowed! No global warming!” But of course, the D.C. area does not exist in a vacuum.
Why it’s cold in Iowa in the winter means there is no global warming, the complete lack of cold – and not only that but 61 degrees in Minot, North Dakota – doesn’t mean there is global warming is anyone’s guess. Hannity probably can’t explain it. I know he can’t.
Well, no one ever said Republican political theology made any sense. It doesn’t. It’s simply a collection of unrelated talking points which can and often are refashioned to meet the needs of the moment. It’s more of a theology of negation than anything, ready to disprove, disenfranchise, discredit…well, you get it. Dissing is a big part of it.
But here is the thing (I’m addressing thinking people here now, not Republicans) if snow in the winter (where, remember, you’re actually supposed to have snow, at least in Iowa) means that global warming is an evil liberal conspiracy, then why, many miles further north, recipient of winter-long Alberta Clippers, does the absence of snow in winter not mean the opposite? Why is 61 degrees not a noteworthy statistic? It’s not supposed to be that warm until April. Republicans may not have calendars. I do. And it’s not April (I’m increasingly questioning their basic literacy).
The Weather Channel tells us that we’re seeing outrageously high temperatures all the way from southern California to North Dakota. “Temperatures have reached up to 40 degrees above early January averages in North Dakota.” Forty degrees! What happened to winter?
For the record, here’s the Weather Channel’s three-day forecast from last Friday:
I realize I am living just outside Washington D.C. these days and that there is often no snow here, but there ought to be snow in other places. There is supposed to be snow in other places because there is supposed to be winter. But winter seems to have disappeared with as completely as honesty from a Republican debate. I mean, what the hell is happening? There isn’t even any snow in my old hunting grounds in the Twin Cities – it’s not even cold enough to snow.
The Weather Channel feels me, if Hannity does not:
We’re talking temperatures in cities such as Minneapolis, Milwaukee, Chicago, St. Louis,Indianapolis, Detroit and Cincinnati enjoying highs on the order of 10-to-20 degrees above average. High temperatures around 5-to-15 degrees above average will make it all the way to the East Coast including New York City, Washington, D.C. and Charlotte, N.C.
According to the Weather Channel,
Daily record highs have been set in Des Moines, Iowa (65 degrees), Rapid City, S.D. (73 degrees), International Falls, Minn. (46 degrees), St. Louis, Mo. (66 degrees) and Fargo, N.D. (55 degrees), to name a few locations.
I don’t know about you, but that sounds like global warming to me. The image below illustrates the extent of the problem – the numbers shown are not temperatures but departures from temperature as in degrees above average.
As Weather Channel says, “Welcome to the winter of 2011-2012 – so far it will be known as the winter without snow and the winter of little cold air.”
I’d add to that, welcome to the winter that wasn’t – because of global warming. Newt Gingrich can drop a chapter from his book by a professor of atmospheric sciences at Texas Tech University – even though she’s an Evangelical Christian herself – and Rick Perry can stifle evidence of global warming in Texas, but that’s not going to make it any colder in Minot, or make it snow in Minneapolis. Trying to shove the evidence under the rug won’t change the scientific facts.
Sadly, no one can change the scientific facts, and they are facts. The overwhelming verdict of climate scientists is in, and even attempts to disprove global warming have found it is, indeed, a fact. We can only hope its not too late to do something about it. The survival of our species is at stake, and tempting though it is to laugh at Sean Hannity, the day may well come when nobody feels like joking about it.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.