LOU DOBBS, COLD WEATHER, WARMING PLANET…. This stopped being funny several years ago. Every winter, most of the country gets cold, and lots of snow falls. And every winter, conservatives point to the winter weather as evidence that global warming isn’t real. And every winter, people who know what they’re talking about smack their heads in frustration.

Yesterday, CNN’s Lou Dobbs helped demonstrate just how inane this tedious practice has become. (thanks to reader D.K. for the heads-up)

Dobbs told viewers that the weather has been “unbelievable,” because there are “unusual storms and a deep freeze across much of the country tonight.” Dobbs was particularly animated about snowfall in Las Vegas, Malibu, and Payson, Arizona. “So what are those folks talking about global warming?” Dobbs asked incredulously.

To “discuss” the subject, Dobbs invited CNN meteorologist Chad Myers and Heartland Institute science director Jay Lehr onto the show.

Not surprisingly, Lehr told Dobbs what he wanted to hear, starting with an anecdote about Lehr’s sky diving hobby.

LEHR: I have jumped out of a plane in Ohio every month for 31 years, and I track the weather constantly to find out if I can make it out of a plane. And I can tell you, the weather the last ten years hasn’t been significantly different than the ten years before that or the ten years before that. It has been — it is always changes what the weather is about. And to say that it has to do with global warming is really more of a joke than anything else. Why people are so alarmed about it, I have no clue.

DOBBS: You know, that’s fascinating.

Before ending the segment, Lehr added that the sun, “not man,” warms the planet, and that “right now,” we’re “going in to cooling rather than warming.”

Let’s quickly highlight reality here. First, it’s not the sun. Second, snowfall on one day in one part of the country does not reflect “climate.” Third, an anecdote about sky-diving experimentation is not indicative of climate science. Fourth, though Dobbs apparently forgot to mention it, the Heartland Institute is a conservative think tank subsidized by ExxonMobil, not an independent scientific organization, and Jay Lehr’s background is in “groundwater hydrology,” not climate science.

Oh, and fifth, this is not “fascinating.”

Why CNN airs this nonsense, in between commercials promoting its “Planet in Peril” series, is a mystery.

Update: I neglected to mention that the bizarre commentary from CNN’s Chad Myers wasn’t much better. He argued that it’s “arrogant” to think that humans can affect the climate (“Mother nature is so big,” he said) and that people who accept global warming are only looking at “a hundred years worth of data, not millions of years that the world has been around.”

Why is this man a CNN meteorologist?

Steve Benen

Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.