Europeans in heat

This has been quite a summer in Europe, with scorching triple-digit temperatures in Spain and Portugal, and 90s widespread as far north as central England. European media has taken the initiative of blaming environmental change as the culprit, announcing that "global warming is now a fact of life".

If the current weather continues, France's Liberation warns, "it means that it's not a heatwave, but climate change".

"Just like the floods of 2002, the heatwave of 2003 is giving us a taste of the kind of weather future generations will increasingly have to think of as normal," it says.

However, these same newspapers are having trouble figuring out that the word 'global' appears in the term global warming. So for this to be true, this heat wave would have to be widespread across continents.

But only recently, the Weather Channel claimed that Atlanta has only surpassed 90 degrees twice this summer, a rarity for them. Moreover, New York City hasn't seen 90 since July 5, another oddity. Here in Michigan, doing some investigating on the local National Weather Service site shows that 9 of Detroit's last 10 months have had overall monthly temperatures average below-normal. The most recent winter was among the coldest ever recorded. So it's perplexing how the eastern United States is enduring global warming. It looks more like a case of the northern jet stream being more amplified than usual, which is a scenario that occurs every once in a while.

Those looking for even more vacation time from work across Europe have the media's backing:

"Too hot to go to work," a headline in French daily Liberation declares simply

But Bild wants action from politicians, and has some radical, if perhaps predictable, ideas. "Chancellor Schroeder, do something!", its front-page headline demands. "Only the chancellor can save us from sunstroke now, by giving us time off work, free raspberry ice cream - and large quantities of free beer!"

Hot summer weather? Demand some handouts from the Feds.

...although it is difficult to argue against tax-funded distribution of German beer.

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