George Will does not want you to believe in global warming. In the Washington Post today he makes the profoundly dumb claim that since 1998 was the hottest year on record, the climate can’t really be getting any warmer. Really!
Reducing carbon emissions supposedly will reverse warming, which is allegedly occurring even though, according to statistics published by the World Meteorological Organization, there has not been a warmer year on record than 1998.
Jon Chait and Steve Benen rightly take Will to task for the factual and logical fallacies in that statement. Will is right about one thing though: 1998 was the hottest year on record. But it was followed by closely by 2005, 2003, 2002, 2004, 2006. In fact, eight out of the hottest ten years on record with the World Meteorological Organization occurred in the last decade. There is no way you can look at this chart (found on page 4 of the World Meteorological Organization report to which Will refers) and NOT conclude that the trend is toward a warmer planet. Will did not bother to read the report or he is deliberately misrepresenting the facts. Either way, that is some shameful stuff to appear in the pages of one of the America’s leading newspapers.