The only thing warming up lately in regards to climate change is the rhetoric.

Despite a decade in which there has been no recorded warming, the Democrats seem to be dusting off the issue again in preparation for President Obama’s re-election.

Because you know, nothing wins votes like a good scare tactic.

Sen. Dick Durbin tried frightening the normals last week when he actually blamed the recent Texas tornadoes on Americans’ unwillingness to drive hybrid cars.

“We are either going to dedicate ourselves to a cleaner, more livable planet and accept the initial investment necessary, or we are going to pay a heavier price in terms of the loss of human life, damage and costs associated with it,” said Durbin.

Just think, if we all bought hybrids, storms would vanish, tornadoes would go away, hail would never fall and lightning would never strike. If we had only had hybrids in previous centuries, no sailor would ever drown at sea, no plane would ever crash, the Donner Party wouldn’t have had to resort to cannibalism, life would be full of puppies and kittens, and the skies would not be cloudy all day.

Of course that last one could be problematic from a global warming standpoint.

Durbin is backed up by CNN meteorologist Alexandra Steele, who told her TV audience that the Texas tornadoes were definitely caused by climate change:

“That’s kind of the climate change we are seeing. You know, extremes are kind of ruling the roost and really what we are seeing, more become the norm. … This global warming is really kind of a misnomer; itís global climate change. So the colds are colder and warms are warmer and severe is more severe.”

The hot stays hot and the cool stays cool — wasn’t that the slogan for the McDLT burger?

The whole man-made global warming theory has been ridiculous from Day One, although that hasn’t stopped liberals from tilting at the wind or the Obama Administration from trotting out more greenhouse gas regulations last month.

Proponents of the theory have been up in arms about an alleged one- to two-degree increase in average global temperature over the past century. Even ignoring the incredible unreliability of most of the data — which have been gathered over 100 years, through wars hot and cold, in countries civilized and primitive through means as diverse as scientific weather stations and household thermometers stuck out in the sun, by personnel ranging from trained scientists to enthusiastic tribesmen — none of the computer models has ever accounted for clouds, which are the leading regulator of temperature on the planet.

When you account for them, the actual contribution of carbon dioxide to the greenhouse effect is about 0.5 to 1 percent of the total temperature change. It’s been estimated that, on the outside, doubling the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere would result in less than a 1-degree Celsius increase in temperature.

Then when you figure out man’s contribution to atmospheric CO2 (about 3.8 percent), the human effect on global temperature over the past century due to industrialization is somewhere around six ten-thousandths of a degree Celsius — maybe. That’s like trying to move an SUV with just your pinky finger.

Compare that with the cost of programs to “fix” the Earth — billions and trillions of dollars and an incalculable loss of freedom with an exponential growth of government power.

The reality that global warming propagandists don’t understand and don’t want you to think about is this: The Earth is a lot bigger than we are, it can take care of itself, and there’s not a thing we can do to affect the global climate one way or the other.

And by the way, climate change propagandists were reportedly stunned by a recent study of polar bears in parts of Canada that found populations of the sea mammals (that’s how they’re classified) to be much larger than advertised and showing no signs of drowning. File that one under “Duh.”