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Toilet training is an essential hurdle for both parents and children. It is a task that everyone needs to do; and one that often strikes panic in the eyes of parents. But it can be an easy event that marks significant growth and development.
I agree about early potty training. I used the book "Toilet Training in Less than a Day" by Nathan Azrin and Richard Foxx and it really worked (well in a couple of weeks for my son). In the book they actually show that even babies can be trained to use a toilet, but they can't get to the toilet or tell you they need to, so it isn't functional (just good to know that it isn't a developmental issue so much). I think the bigger issue for most parents is that it takes time and it's a pain to deal with "accidents." But it definitely can be done!
I used the 3-day method at 22 months with my daughter. We documented all of it on www.pinkbears.ca - so far it was successful! I don't know that 22 months would work for everyone, but I certainly didn't expect it to work so well for us - and it did! Obviously she was more ready than I thought!