Cuba runs out of toilet paper

The financial crisis, which has already hit Cuba's economy hard, is about to give the country another big kick, this time in the tuchas. Literally. Cuba is on the verge of a toilet-paper crisis.

Devastating hurricanes have left the state-run company that produces the country's supply, without the raw materials necessary to keep up with demand. In addition to which, President Raul Castro recently announced a 20 percent cut in imports, meaning a lot less goods on state-run store shelves. Cuban officials are saying they may not have sufficient TP supplies until the end of the year.

Worldwide, toilet paper is a booming business, especially in the United States where consumers use up to 50 million pounds of TP a year. It seems American bottoms have a "soft-tissue" fetish, one that's not only costly, but harmful to the environment. In order to get the fluffiest tissue, suppliers take from the world's rainforests. Earlier this year Greenpeace released a toilet-paper guide listing the more planet-friendly products. 

One penny-saving option for Cuba would be to use recycled lavatory paper, a much cheaper alternative on the whole. Indeed, many countries are already using the eco-friendly alternative, even if it is a little ... rough.

For Cuba, this could be an opportunity to take that initiative one seriously brave step further to becoming a leader to an "greener" planet: Go cloth.

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Ramzan Kadyrov creates his own reality

Whatever you say about Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov, the guy is comfortable making big promises:

Every year the economy suffers losses but also sees gains and no one knows what's going to happen tomorrow. The only thing I can say is that we'll fully rebuild Chechnya and solve every social problem. Chechnya will be the most successful region in Russia and the world.

Has no interest in feigning sympathy for his recently deceased enemies:

[Recently murdered human rights activist Natalia Estemirova] never had any honor or sense of shame. And still I appointed her head of a [civil society advisory] commission with the mayor of Grozny as her deputy. I wanted to be objective about addressing the issue. But she didn’t like it. She would say stupid things. I told her, "You're a woman, and we're trying to do something for the people. But if it doesn't work, don’t blame us."

And little shame in sucking up to the boss:

By lowering his status [by stepping down as president], Putin again showed his strength and that he's a servant of the people. But that doesn’t change my attitude toward him. I'd still give my life for him.

RFE/RL: Would you like to see Putin become president again?

Very much. I want Putin to be president of Russia for life. 

Check out the whole unbelievable interview with Radio Free Europe, especially Kadyrov's explanation of how human rights groups and violating his human rights by saying such nasty things about him. 

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