Have the "global warmers" lost the messaging battle?
One of the worst things the global warmers did was forecast, initially, monotonic warming. If only they had said, "There are natural variations in climate that may lead to stagnation or even temperature reversals, but the overall trend spanning decades will be for warming to occur."
To "see" the effect of global warming you have to factor in ocean temperatures, not just atmospheric temperatures because most of the excess heat will go into heating the oceans. What is ominous now is that we had a strong El Nino in 1998 leading to record warmth. Now we are going into a cooling phase that may last decades where temperatures may rise minimally. When warming again starts 20-30 years from now it will be much worse because the global warming will piggy back "normal" warming trends e.g. a strong El Nino.
The Intergovernmental Panel On Climate Change moved the goal posts. They weren't worried about their computer models if no warming occurred for a decade (it didn't), so then they said they wouldn't be worried if no warming occurred for at least 15 years (no warming has occurred for the past 16 years). Now they say they won't be worried about their models unless warming doesn't occur for 20 years.
Now we have the worst case scenario for the global warmers. They have had to scale back from the worst case scenarios, maximum warming, to the prevailing view that we are not likely to see maximum warming. To the scientist this is science adapting to new data; to the non-scientist it looks like waffling.
Global warmers have lost the messaging battle; unless Americans see sea level rise at least six inches nothing will be done to lessen carbon emissions. Carbon dioxide levels will mean nothing to the average American unless they can see clear tangible effects of these elevated CO2 levels.