Here is confirmation of what I've been posting and telling people. From an actual meteorologist who also happens to believe in AGW. Here is a excerpt of his blog post:
Why did this happen?
It may be easy for someone to go and say that it was just global warming or La Nina, but it is not that easy. We are looking at several factors that just happen to come together for an extended period to produce this pattern. Some of those factors are.......
1. Unusually sustained, record positive phase of the Arctic Oscillation produced stronger west to east jet stream into southern Canada and the northern U.S. which spread Pacific air across the continent and trapped the Arctic air far to the north.
2. North Atlantic Oscillation mostly in a positive phase. (lack of blocking)
3. Stronger western Atlantic high pressure ridge.
4. Sea ice?
5. Lack of snow cover from the Prairies to the eastern U.S. allowed cold air masses to modify as they tracked south and east. The darker, bare ground also absorbs more heat than snow/ice cover.
6. La Nina played some role, but not sure it was as much as we thought.
7. Warmer than normal sea surface temperatures over the Great Lakes and off the East Coast.
In terms of global warming, we have to remember that this is just one season over a relatively small part of the Earth (North America). Yes, the planet is warming, but we just do not have enough data to link this past winter to global warming. Now, if we see a steady increase in winters like this from North America to Asia over the next few decades then we may be able to establish a more concrete link.