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America's Woeful Weather

Bad weather is getting to be a habit in the United States these days.

The El Nino weather phenomenon, which soaked the Pacific coast all winter, may be behind the furious storms that lashed the Northeast and Central U.S. this weekend-and, batten down the hatches, Northeast, the storms are still coming.

In the Southeast, there's a heat wave in the wake of thunderstorms.

Some parts of New England saw ten inches of rain this weekend, handily breaking records right and left. And more New England rain was the outlook.

Then was the especially strong tornado that ripped through Oklahoma City, and the lightning strike that injured six people during a concert Saturday in Washington, D.C.

what is going here? Well, right from the start, it needs to be said: there's no easy answer. Some of it is, undoubtably, just part of Spring ending and summer beginning. Some of it is, undoubtably, related to the dreaded El Nino.

El Nino has affected weather worldwide, in more ways than anyone yet understands. It certainly started the tornado season earlier, and made the regular tornado season last longer -- and do more damage -- than usual.

Some of it is, also, possibly, related to what we know is already developing in the Pacific -- La Nina. El Nino was a warming of pacific waters. La Nina is the cooling.

There is much talk around about what effect La Nina is going to have down the road -- long after the unusual weather we're now undergoing -- has passed.

We know the trouble with the weather is that, so often, there's not anything you can do about it. But right now, in many, many parts of this country -- there are a lot of people who wish they could do something about the weather.

Reported by Dan Rather
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