So, the big, stupid talking point among climate sceptics at the moment, including some of the more sophisticated ones — I’ve heard Jim Manzi make this point before — is that no warming has occurred since 1998, because that was the hottest year on record. This is moronic. It also strikes me as very foolish from a rhetorical perspective. You see, global warming means that we will eventually have a year that’s hotter than 1998. A developing El Nino suggests that we may have a year that’s hotter than 1998 tout de suite.
I understand that the kind of person who cites the 1998 factoid as evidence against warming is not the kind of person who will be unable to come up with some alternative, perhaps more moronic, denialist evidence. Still, won’t having this argument cemented in the public record many, many times wind up being kind of a black eye once it’s no longer true?
I mean, can we get George Will on record as saying what he believes the implications of the world having a year hotter than 1998 would be?