...and malice towards none, I rise (off the crapper) to join the Great Toilet Paper Debate.
With no other sure-fire way to attract the attention of the Common Man save by pointing at his ass, the enviroweenies have begun to center on the lack of awareness of the environment brought on by the act of wiping one's ass.
This blog doesn't get involved with many of the "greener than thou" diatribes which seem to befoul the lefty blogs, stifling the proper exercise of thought thereon, but I'm an actual combat participant in the Toilet Paper Wars, so I thought readers might be interested in getting to the bottom of this bit of history.
I lived in England for three years, while a lad, 1954-56. It was the best time of my life, for I was just old enough to begin to appreciate how adults led their lives, but still young enough that I could retreat to the simplicity and civility of the child's life any time I wanted to, and the English were a civilized lot back then.
England in the Fifties was just starting to come out of a post-war Depression. Actually, they had been in a Depression for longer than the US, about 30 years by then. Their Depression was triggered by the commercial finish of their Colonies. They still held a few, but the days of glorious advantage because of them were over by the time our Depression started.
Enter toilet paper as an indicator of the civilization (citation).
Post war Europe manufactured toilet paper, but it seems that they declined to actually improve the product since it had evolved from it's previous humble beginnings as catalogs, meat wrappers, etc. During my sojourn there, I found that the best TP available wouldn't have made a mid-grade roll in the USA, and evidently, that evaluation still holds up 50 years later:
European toilet paper that I've used could actually be used to write on, and write upon clearly WITH A FOUNTAIN PEN. I've seen it used as TYPING PAPER, performing that role adequately in a manual upright Underwood machine, perfect for writing an Airmail letter. Most of this eurowipe had such a smooth surface, all it did was smear the cling-ons flat, not actually remove them, as proper US paper will reliably do. This, of course, leads to seriously skidded shorts in skinny people, and serious trail burn in those with more mass to their asses.
Of course, all this ASSumes that you were taught things like how to properly wipe your ass and blow your nose in the first place! While in England, our family noticed that the locals did not like to use disposable tissue for blowing the nose, either. This led to my habit of taking 6-12 tissues with me whenever we left our house for any reason. Those same Kleenex could be used to wipe the butt with as well as the nose. The Brits, of course, used handkerchiefs, but they can get loaded up with snot and be very unpleasant to handle, and heaven help you if you had to shake hands, which they did a lot! I DID learn how to properly flick a booger while in England, though.
The BOTTOM line here is that if civility can be measured by how clean your ass is, we are a lot more civilized than the Europeans, and that's a butt-load of truth!