Reader Stephen Rynerson has the lowdown on how Norway takes care of its vertically challenged citizens:
He complained of bitter memories riding the school bus as a child, because of bullying and because he needed more time than his fellow passengers to go on and off the bus. Today he remains subject to anxiety attacks at the thought of riding the bus.
Local authorities in eastern Norway, where he lives, said this is a problem he must tackle himself. The special Norwegian court that decides social welfare conflicts nationwide (Trygderetten) disagreed.
The court sympathized with his claim, and ruled that society shouldn't expose him to the additional psychological burden of riding the bus. The court said he thus can demand that taxpayers finance the purchase of a private car for him.
A state-funded car, according to the court order, is the only way he could enjoy a relatively independent life.