Conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh on Wednesday mocked news outlets hyping the heat wave gripping much of the nation by reporting the heat index rather than the actual temperatures.
On Friday's "Real Time," host Bill Maher proved Limbaugh's point by falsely telling his audience, "It was 123 in Minnesota" (video follows with transcript and commentary, vulgarity alert):
BILL MAHER: No, I know why you're happy. It’s because you're indoors. It's hot outside. Not as hot here as it a lot of places in the country. Do you know that 29 states are under what they call a heat advisory? When I was a kid this used to be called, “Get the f--k inside.”
But, I mean, they’re triple-digit temperatures. It was 123 in Minnesota. How far is Al Gore going to take this global warming hoax? A hundred?
Before we get to the stupidity and/or dishonesty on display, Maher followed this up by making another tasteless joke about Marcus Bachmann:
MAHER: 123 in Minnesota? Minnesota? Michelle Bachmann's husband went in the closet just for the shade.
[Cheers and applause]
Oh, I kid Michelle Bachmann.
Hysterical, isn't it?
Not so funny was how Maher was doing exactly what Limbaugh spoke about Wednesday:
RUSH LIMBAUGH: They're playing games with us on this heat wave again. Even Drudge is getting sucked in here, gonna be 116 in Washington. No, it's not. It's gonna be like a hundred. Maybe 99. The heat index, manufactured by the government, to tell you what it feels like when you add the humidity in there, 116. When's the last time the heat index was reported as an actual temperature? It hasn't been, but it looks like they're trying to get away with doing that now. Drudge is just linking to other people reporting it, he's not saying it, I don't want you to misunderstand, but he's linking to stories which say 116 degrees in Washington. No. It's what, a hundred, 97, 99. It's gonna top out at 102, 103. It does this every year. There's a heat dome over half the country, the Midwest, it's moving east. And it happens every summer.
Indeed. Maher likely got this 123 figure from a CNN.com piece reporting such a heat index in Hutchinson, Minnesota, Tuesday.
If folks like him were honest, they would first make clear that heat index is not temperature. It's temperature including the impact humidity has on it.
And that's the real news this week that global warming obsessed media members have downplayed - record humidity.
As Conservation Minnesota reported Wednesday:
Tuesday evening, around the dinner hour, the dew point at Moorhead reached 87.8 F, making this the most humid reporting station on the planet. The heat index peaked at an almost incomprehensible 134 F. at Moorhead.
Yet, as Minnesota Public Radio reported Wednesday, it was only 93 F when that record-breaking heat index was recorded in Moorhead.
What was responsible then? As the Bemidji Pioneer reported Saturday, it was the unprecedented humidity:
Meteorologists have determined that large fields of corn raise the dew points in surrounding areas because corn “sweats” on hot days. When the humid air mass that originated over the Gulf of Mexico passed over the sea of green that is Iowa, sweating corn likely added to the humidity levels.
Of course, it's also been a very rainy season throughout much of the upper Midwest adding to the high humidity levels.
But folks like Maher aren't concerned with such things.
Heat indices skyrocketed last week, and that must mean Nobel laureate Gore is right about global warming regardless of all the other factors involved.