It is a pleasure to thank M. Ghil, R. Saravanan, G. Schmidt, and D. Thompson for stimulating discussions, and three reviewers whose comments led to a substantial improvements in the manuscript. I also thank M. Latif and the Max Planck Institute for their hospitality during a 2-week stay in the summer of 1998 when this work was initiated, and for making the GCM simulations available. The CSM group at NCAR are equally acknowledged for allowing access to their simulations. The NCEP–NCAR reanalysis data were provided through the NOAA Climate Diagnostics Center (http://www.cdc.noaa.gov/). This work was supported by DOE Grant DE-FG03-98ER62615. This is Publication Number 5663 of UCLA's Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics (IGPP).
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